Updated: Feb 5, 2014 8:23 am
Wow. I know I said offense sells tickets, but defense wins championship in the Super Bowl Preview, but wow. What the Seattle Seahawks defense did to the Broncos is the greatest defensive performance in Super Bowl history. This may be living in the moment, but I doubt it, and here’s why.
When people talk about the greatest defensive games in Super Bowl History, there are four that came to mind: The Pittsburgh Steel Curtain in Super Bowl IX, The 1985 Chicago Bears, the 2000 Baltimore Ravens, and this year’s Seahawks. Despite their great performance, the Steelers dominate performance came before the rule changes of 1978 that would open up the passing game of the NFL, disqualifying them.
In the case of the Bears, they allowed the most points out of the four performances. Between the Ravens in Super Bowl XXXV, and Seahawks this year, even though the Ravens shutout their opponents, their opponents were the Kerry Collins led Giants, not Peyton Manning.
This year’s Denver Broncos offense has broken almost every major offensive record in the NFL History book. Peyton Manning has had the greatest passing season in the history of the league. Their receiving core includes four players that could be the #1 weapon on about half the teams in the league. This was the offense that was supposed to put up eighty points, not eight.
On the other side, the main question for the Broncos is what does this loss do for the legacy of their quarterback, Peyton Manning. Despite the loss, Manning still had a record-setting season, and won his record fifth MVP. But the loss overshadow the whole year?
I believe Mike Greenberg of ESPN’s “Mike and Mike” gives the best description on the effects of the loss to Manning’s legacy. He says that in the QB Wing of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, at the room with the greatest quarterbacks of all time, Peyton is at that table with Tom Brady, Joe Montana, Johnny Unitas, and others.
However, the fact they not only lost the game, but were blowout, and Manning struggled puts him at the kid’s table of the wing. And although I disagree that Manning is at the kid’s table, unless over the rest of his short career, he is able to win another Super bowl, maybe two, he shouldn’t be looked at on equal par with quarterbacks such as Montana, Unitas, or even his contemporary, Tom Brady. Manning will be in the same boat as Brett Farve: A player who put up great stats, and despite winning one Super Bowl, had multiple blunders in the playoffs.
The final question of from the Super Bowl is the possibility a Seahawks dynasty. Statistically, the Seahawks are the second youngest team to appear in the Super Bowl, second only to the 1971 Miami Dolphins, who lost, but went on to win back to back Super Bowls in 1972 and 73. In fact, before Seattle, the youngest team to win the Super Bowl were the 1981 49ers, and the 1974 Pittsburgh Steelers, both would eventually win three more to dominate their decades. So what is stopping Seattle? Well, only two thing actually, and there kinda big factors: free agency and the salary cap.
Do you realize that both Richard Sherman and Russell Wilson are making less than one million dollars a year. Kam Chancellor, and Earl Thomas’ combined yearly averages are less than four million a year. Eventually, the Seahawks will lose some of their best players to the black hole of NFL free agency.
Despite this, the Seahawks still have a couple of years until their young, talented players hit the market, so hopefully, they can win another championship before being forced to pick between Richard Sherman or Kam Chancellor, or Marshawn Lynch or Percy Harvin. Well, whatever happens in the future, it has no bearings on the domination they had on Sunday, and their place in NFL History.