It was a sad turn of events for our Carolina Panthers at this year’s Super Bowl, but an exciting game nonetheless. Levi’s Stadium was the stage for the Denver Broncos’ 24-10 win in front of over 70,000 fans.
The Panthers’ motto of “Keep Pounding” belies the force of nature offense that led Carolina to a 17-2 record this season. Averaging 31 points per game in the regular season, and over 40 in the post season, it was going to take a team with an incredible defense to keep the Panthers out of the end zone.
The Broncos turned out to be that team. Panthers’ QB Cam Newton found himself exposed and sacked seven times, tying a Super Bowl record last achieved in 1985. One early sack allowed a fumble recovery for a touchdown, the first in a Super Bowl in 22 years.
Carolina just couldn’t get things together out there on Sunday. The disappointing first quarter was rife with fumbles and mistakes. Late in the game they cut into the Broncos’ commanding 16-10 lead, but followed that quickly with another fumble, recovered by the Broncos that left the action on the Carolina 4-yard line.
A Possible Storybook Ending for Peyton Manning
A Super Bowl victory is the crowning achievement of any NFL quarterback, and Peyton Manning now has two. The 39-year-old is wrapping up his 18th season, and retirement rumors are swirling. This decision is no easy call, and leaving the game behind can be tough. No word yet from the man himself, but he’s displaying all the signs of a player ready to hang up his cleats.
The pageantry of the big game kicked off with a stirring rendition of the Star Spangled Banner by Lady Gaga. Dressed in a glittering red suit and a pair of American-flag shoes, Lady Gaga’s legendary performance skills wowed the crowd. She was accompanied by actress Marlee Matlin, who signed the anthem for the hearing impaired audience.
The energy just got higher with a Super Bowl halftime show headlined by Coldplay, Bruno Mars, and Beyoncé. Beyoncé’s intense dance routine lead to a face-off between her and Mars, pulling songs out of their respective catalogs.
Many viewers tune in to the Super Bowl each year to see the best and most bizarre ads of the year. This year’s slate was no exception, juxtaposing huge stars and cute animals. According to Ad Meter, this year’s winner was Hyundai’s “First Date,” featuring Kevin Hart as the 007 of over-protective dads. Another crowd pleaser was Heinz’s “Wiener Stampede,” with a crush of adorable wiener dogs dressed as hotdogs rushing across the countryside.
But no Super Bowl is complete without the strange misfire. Puppy Monkey Baby is a term not many will be quick to forget.
So, while the Panthers didn’t quite bring it all home this year, it goes without saying that they’ve played their hearts out for Carolina. Charlotte couldn’t be prouder of our team.
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