Super Bowl XLVIII Quick Hits

Posted: February 3, 2014 in Bruno Mars, Football, Music, Random Thoughts, Sports, Uncategorized
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I know everyone is Super Bowled out after 2 weeks of hype and 4 quarters of one-sided football, but since that was the last meaningful game we will see until September, I wanted to add some of my own thoughts before we put the last bit of dirt on the 2013 season.

Game Thoughts:

  1. If they played last night’s game 100 times, I have a feeling that Seattle would win at least 80 times.  I don’t think many of the games would be blowouts, but Seattle is clearly the better team.  As I wrote a few weeks ago, certain teams just match up poorly against other teams like a Rock/Paper/Scissor game.  Seattle’s passing defense was going to be a problem for the great Denver passing attack regardless of the score.  When the Broncos got off to their slow start, it allowed the Seahawks to pile up some early points and force the Broncos to ditch the running game.  This fed right into Seattle’s hands, as they were able to focus on trying to get pressure on Peyton Manning and trust their defensive backs would take care of any balls that made it to the secondary.  With pressure in his face and the passing game laid to ruins, Peyton wasn’t able to put anything together until the game was well out of reach.
  2. It was apparent early just how much of an advantage the Seahawks had on offense against the Broncos defense.  Seattle was able to manage the clock and keep their 3rd downs in a manageable distance.  The Broncos secondary will have an entire offseason to practice tackling, as they were just throwing their shoulders at the Seahawks wideouts for part of the game.  Again, once Seattle had the lead, they were able to keep Denver on their heels with a balanced attack of run and pass, with their quarterback making plays on the ground and in the air.  Trying to stop an offense with one distinct strength is much easier than a multi-faceted attack like the one the Seahawks have.  Denver’s defensive line need to wreck havoc in the Seattle offensive backfield.  When that didn’t happen, it allowed Seattle to move the ball down the field at will.  They were a few red zone plays away from breaking the game open even more in the first half.
  3. Due to the Broncos turnovers and lack of scoring, we did not see much of Seattle’s return game.  But the little we did see showed the advantage that Seattle had over Denver on this side of the ball.  The Broncos came into this game as the 21st ranked special teams in the league, while the Seahawks entered as the 5th best.  Denver has been able to hide their weak kickoff coverage while at home, with the thin air allowing Matt Prater to kick the ball out of the end zone.  However, Prater received his “Welcome to New York/New Jersey” moment when Percy Harvin took the opening kickoff of the third quarter to the house, which put a real stamp on Seattle’s dominance right out halftime.  Meanwhile, Steven Hauschka was able to neutralize Trindon Holliday for much of the night by booting many of his kickoffs deep or out of the end zone.
  4. This game felt a lot like the 2002 Super Bowl between Tampa Bay and Oakland.  Tampa was the defensive juggernaut that went up against an Oakland team that had a great offense with an aging quarterback.  Oakland was simply outclassed in every phase of the game and it made for another boring blowout.
  5. Speaking of offense vs. defense matchups, Robert Mays wrote a great piece on history Offense vs. Defense Super Bowls.  Chalk this game up to another one for the defensive teams.
  6. The Seahawks are obviously built to sustain greatness for a good run here.  They have their three most important players still on their rookie deals (Wilson, Richard Sherman, and Earl Thomas) and are among the youngest teams in the league.  That is a scary thought.  While they will not have such flexibility in cap room once those deals are done, they still have one more year to load up on players who will take less money to play for a winner and increase their value (a la Michael Bennett this year).  I think Pete Carroll’s biggest challenge will be to have everyone in the organization avoid “The Disease of More”.  Carroll seems to be a coach that has the pulse of his team, but this next year will be a legit challenge to keep everyone focused in the best conference and perhaps best division in the NFL.
  7. The Broncos will have some big decisions to make this offseason on free agents like Knowshon Moreno, Eric Decker, and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.  Add in that Manning has to have his neck checked out before deciding whether another season of NFL football is healthy for him, and there are some serious question marks about Denver making it back to this point next season.
  8. After years of discussion about the weather, it ended up being the mildest day of the last month or so in the Tri-State area.  I personally would have loved to see all the annual Super Bowl attendees (read: rich) people have to deal with snow before, during, and after the game.  Unfortunately that did not happen.  Instead, it is snowing out today and there is tons of snow in the forecast for the next week or so.  Goodell dodged a huge bullet last night.
  9. I will preface this with the fact that I am a diehard Bruno Mars fan, but I thought he was fantastic during the Halftime Show.  I loved the opening with the kids singing “Billionaire”, Bruno’s drum solo, the Hooligans dance routine, and of course Bruno just KILLING it with some James Brown-like dance moves.  While I thought Bruno could carry the show by himself, I understand why the Red Hot Chili Peppers were added to the mix.  I thought they should have played 1-2 more Chili Peppers songs if you were going to have them there, but it wasn’t that big of a deal.  Finally, the introduction from different members of the armed forces from around the world was really cool before Bruno capped the show with “Just The Way You Are”.  The more screen-time we can give our troops, the better.
  10. Finally, the commercials were not great as a whole last night.  Ad agencies know what type of commercials resonate with people (animals, babies, comedy, nostaliga, etc.), but they have not really been able to hit many home runs the last few years.  USA Today runs an annual Ad Meter that judges the best commercials for each Super Bowl.  Here is a link to this year’s Ad Meter.  Meanwhile, my 3 favorite commercials from last night were:

Goodbye NFL 2013.  We will really, really, really, really, really miss you.  Please let the 2014 season get here ASAP.

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