The 2014 Super Bowl has matched up the best offense of the season against the best defense. Needless to say, it will be a hard-fought battle.
Kaepernick was stopped more in the second half against Seattle than he was in the first. Against Manning and the Broncos, this will be more of a challenge.
Once Peyton settles into a game he has a good sense of "reading the defense and he got [the Patriots] into some situations that were less than ideal with his astute play calling and recognition," Bill Belichick, coach for the Patriots said.
This will come into play against the Seahawks in the Super Bowl when it is projected to be below freezing. The quicker Manning can read the defense and set his team up, the better off his team will be for the entirety of the game.
Manning threw for 400 yards with no interceptions in Sunday’s game. He completed 32 of his 43 passes and hit eight different receivers.
With so many options for Manning when he’s throwing the ball, it’s hard for a defense to find the key players and put multiple men on them.
The Seattle defense has had three sacks this postseason. The Broncos have shown that they don't anticipate being part of this statistic, with the offensive line keeping Manning from getting sacked during the last game.
Seattle was able to force turnovers on each of the final three 49ers' possessions, showing their dominance.
This dominance is much less likely to shine through in a couple of weeks. Manning has proven to be successful in the postseason no matter what critics may say.
He has eight career playoff games with at least 350 yards and has 6,309 career postseason passing yards, second all-time.
Peyton will use his previous two Super Bowl experiences to his advantage against Seattle. Unless the cold weather proves to be a major obstacle in the game, the two interceptions that Seattle has gotten this postseason will be hard to find against Manning.
The Seahawks last went to the Super Bowl in 2006, losing to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Manning's extra experience will be a push that could make the Broncos win the game.
Manning's presence on the field not only gives confidence to his team but also keeps them calm and collected. "He had a little bit of a relaxed demeanor about him," teammate Jacob Tamme also said to CBS. "His type of leadership seeps into everybody else."
Keeping a team calm in such a high pressure game in freezing temperatures can be difficult to do. This leadership will play to the Broncos' advantage.
Many people doubted Manning’s ability to come back successfully after his neck surgery. Playing in the Super Bowl will silence the skeptics for a little while but not enough to keep them quiet.
ESPN weighed in on Manning’s success after his injury.
In 2011, we questioned whether Peyton Manning would ever play football again. In 2014, he's playing in the Super Bowl.— ESPN (@espn) January 19, 2014
Dick Vitale, an ESPN analyst, tweeted his bold prediction for the Super Bowl.
Don't waste time - put the name Peyton Manning on the Super Bowl MVP trophy as he and his Denver Bronco buddies will not be stopped— Dick Vitale (@DickieV) January 19, 2014
Manning will surely be looking to prove he not only made it to the game but also belongs there, leading his team to be champions.
All stats courtesy of NFL.com.