Monday, January 25, 2016

Broncos Win Squeaker, Panthers Roll to Set Stage for Super Bowl 50

The Denver Broncos held off the New England Patriots, 20-18 while the Carolina Panthers absolutely crushed the Arizona Cardinals, 49-15 to advance to Super Bowl 50 in two weeks.

Peyton Manning and the Broncos are headed back to the Super Bowl
Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning out dueled counterpart Tom Brady by throwing for two touchdowns in the first half to pace his team to a 17-9 halftime edge.
The second half was a slug fest as the defenses took over trading field goals until Brady hit tight end Rob Gronkowski for a four-yard touchdown pass with 12 seconds left in the game to provide the final outcome. The two-point try to tie the game failed when Brady's pass was deflected and intercepted.
The ensuing onside kickoff was recovered by the Broncos and it was party time in the Mile High City.

Panthers players celebrate their NFC title game win
Down in Carolina, the Panthers, led by QB Cam Newton's two rushing touchdowns along with two TD passes, jumped out to a 17-0 first quarter lead and never looked back. They held a 24-7 lead against the Cardinals at the half.
The second half was more of the same as Carolina built up a 34-7 lead entering the final quarter and rolled to the final outcome to punch their ticket to their second ever Super Bowl appearance.

A key statistic in each game was the defense for the winning team as the Broncos sacked Brady four times and picked off a pair of passes as well. Meanwhile, the Panthers defense registered three sacks and forced SEVEN turnovers, including four interceptions against Arizona QB Carson Palmer, one of which was returned 22 yards for a score by linebacker Luke Kuechly to put the icing on the cake for the Panthers victory.

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