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How Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers Made Super Bowl 50
Super Bowl 50’s participants have finally been determined after 18 weeks of NFL games, with the Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers set to tangle in Levi’s Stadium for the right to be called champions. Both teams had interesting paths to get to this point, with keys for each team highlighting their conference championships.
Denver Broncos Rely On Defense
For the Denver Broncos, the key to their success was one of the best defenses in the history of the NFL, one that stifled opponents at all levels of the game. This facet of their game has covered for the fact that the Broncos’ offense has been anything but convincing throughout this season, including in the playoffs where their quarterback play has been noticeably inferior to that of their opponents at times.
The Denver Broncos’ defense has been led by its pass rush, which is the reason they find themselves in Super Bowl 50. The combination of Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware has spearheaded a defense that has been able to consistently get pressure on quarterbacks throughout this entire season. In their AFC Championship game win over the New England Patriots, the Broncos dominated up front, allowing their defense to better defend the Patriots’ group of receiving threats.
In Super Bowl 50, though, the Broncos take on the team with the best record in the NFL, the Carolina Panthers. This means that their defense will need to play well, but their offense will have to step up as well to put up a comparable point total to the best offensive team in the NFL.
Carolina Panthers Rely On Offense
While the Denver Broncos have relied on a stout defense to get themselves to Super Bowl 50, the Carolina Panthers have combined a good defense with the league’s best offense to get themselves to the NFL’s golden game. Led by superstar quarterback Cam Newton and an unending rotation of skill players, teams simply haven’t found many ways to stop the Panthers from putting up large numbers on the scoreboard week in and week out.
Of course, the key for the Carolina Panthers’ offense is the unpredictability of Cam Newton, who is able to run on both designed and improvised plays on a whim, but has the arm strength and accuracy to make perfect throws in just as quick a decision making period. This makes defenses completely unsure as to what they should do on each play to try and defend him, let alone all of the great running backs and receivers that flank Newton.
It will be vital for the Denver Broncos to contain Newton, as getting traditional pressure on him will just allow him to break out of the pocket and make plays with his legs, which is something the Carolina Panthers are more than happy to allow to happen. This will be the first time Denver has played against a truly mobile quarterback all season long, something that could have a serious impact on their defense time and time again throughout Super Bowl 50.
By: Jason M. Sanin