The only thing different here that I can see from last year is the last two teams. St Louis and Arizona are the new teams on the preseason schedule this year. Denver played Seattle and SF last year.
Sept 7 vs Indianapolis: lost Manning’s return there last year. Why not open this season with a possible huge bang. Manning has to win this one though.
Sept. 14 vs Kansas City: won both games last year, spoiled their perfect record too.
*Sept 21 @ Seattle: If Seattle can win this one too, and keep in mind that they absolutely destroyed Denver in both of their games last year, then maybe there is something wrong with this team, this game should be interesting b/c they did not play last year in the regular season, once in the preseason and again in the super bowl.
Sept. 28 BYE last year Broncos’ bye week was smack dab in the middle of the season, not sure if there is an advantage either way. Football players only do their thing once, maybe twice, per week!
*Oct. 5 Arizona: will be among the new faces on the schedule, not sure what Arizona has going for them. They do have at least one top WR in Michael Floyd
*Oct. 12 @New York Jets: second straight game against an opponent not on last year’s schedule, first game against Decker on his new team, I wonder who will come out on top in this one
*Oct. 19 San Francisco: Manning vs Kaepernick better be good, they played in 2013’s preseason and it was boring
Oct. 22 (Thursday) San Diego: with Philip Rivers getting up there just like Manning (age), this could be one of the last games between the two QBs. Manning in no doubt the better player, but Rivers always puts him to the test. Big time. Last year’s AFC division game??? As well this will also be a matchup we didn’t see in last year’s regular season,
Nov. 2 @New England: put Tom Brady right up there with Rivers on the list of QBs that challenge Peyton Manning to the utmost. These games usually wind up being better than the Super Bowl (last year for damn sure).
Nov. 9 @Oakland: the Oakland Raiders played Denver twice last year. Denver won both games. This year I don’t see things getting any better for the Raiders, having basically swapped a QB who can play in Terrelle Pryor for someone who hasn’t yet, in Matt Schaub.
*Nov. 16 @St. Louis: another new matchup on the schedule, I don’t think there is much to be worried about here, St. Louis was the Super Bowl champion about 12 years ago, that seems like it will be it for them for awhile
*Nov. 23 Miami: After what happened with the Dolphins in the middle of last season is probably still going to find some way of affecting the way the team plays for this year, I see nothing good here
Nov. 30 @Kansas City:
*Dec. 7 Buffalo: The Bills were one of the few teams that have actually helped themselves lately. They have a good QB in EJ Manual, and they helped themselves a little more when they took WR Sammy Watkins out of Clemson. I think this kid will test whoever happens to be playing Safety or Cornerback for Denver that day.
Dec. 14 @San Diego: Another matchup against Rivers and the Chargers. I take my previous statements regarding Rivers vs Manning and stick them right here!
*Dec. 22 @Cincinnati: Cincy is on the rise too, they just haven’t done much more than earn a playoff spot, yet. They played strong enough all of last season, will definitely challenge Pittsburgh for the AFC North, at some point we may be considering Cleveland in there too if the team doesn’t destroy Johnny Manziel before someone else’s defense does. Let’s wait and see.
Dec. 22 Oakland: Denver wins. I say by at least 20.
Key omissions from last year’s schedule. I know each and every season the NFL tries to change up the schedule for most of its teams, but here is who was on last year and is off the Bronco schedule this year: Ravens, Giants, Eagles, Cowboys, Jaguars, Redskins and the Texans.
What a horrible game.
I am a Denver Bronco fan.
A really disappointed Denver Broncos fan.
I have been for about two years.
For the past five days or so I have been one of the ones wondering ‘what the hell happened?’
As a continuation, and finale, of my weekly roundup of NFL action which I usually publish on my WordPress page (jeffonlineblog.wordpress.com), things have started to take a back seat to a new FT job (yay for me).
Anyways, it’s taken all kinds of time and a lot of thought, watched a bunch of Bronco player interviews, and I still sit here wondering what the hell happened on Sunday night? I had to go outside for an hour and a half in -10 degree weather to help put that disappointment into some kind of perspective that makes any sense.
There have been some weird stuff I’ve seen online all relating to an NFL football game, most is hard to believe.
HERE IS MY TAKE ON SUPER BORED XLVIII:
I don’t’ agree at all that the Seahawks won the game because they have a good defense. The Seahawks won the game because the other team did not even show up to play.
From beginning to end, they never even showed up to play.
What the hell?
This game was BORing. No sports event should ever be boring. That’s why it’s sports. It’s supposed to be exciting, fun and at times, incredibly intense. This particular matchup was SUPPOSED to be awesome. It wasn’t awesome. It wasn’t even close. It sucked. It sucked donkey balls. It was almost a disgrace to its own profession. Even if you are a Seattle Seahawks supporter, you can’t possibly suggest that it was a great game. This shit was actually on espn’s Classic Super Bowls on Tuesday night. That’s a whole two days after the fact. Have the execs at espn lost their freaking minds?!? This game wasn’t a classic, it was a complete bore.
It was so bad that you can’t even blame 1-2 people, you have to blame the whole friggin’ team. Each and every one of them sucked equally. Each and every one of them. Everyone from the head coach down to the water boy. Maybe there was something in the water (maybe, maybe not, at this point I would listen to anything). It was like they didn’t want to win.
It is absolutely pathetic.
You couldn’t blame ‘A’ player, you have to blame all of them. You can’t blame a coach (even though I would love to blame John Fox for not getting his boys prepared enough), you have to blame all of them. It’s like you couldn’t blame ‘a’ thing, you had to blame everything.
Even though Fox didn’t totally do his job properly and assume that the biggest game of the season between two worthy opponents would be enough to make it a very noisy stadium. Wes Welker admitted that the other day in a story produced by cbssports.com
Earlier in the week, Broncos coach John Fox, who had been to two previous Super Bowls, said in a pool report that the team actually turned down the simulated crowd noise during practices because he didn’t expect it to be an issue Sunday. Are you nuts John Fox?!? I know you are coming off a huge health scare this season but what the hell?!?
The reality is that it was absolutely deafening. And it had an obvious and immediate effect.
“We were using a snap count on the play, but due to the noise, no one could hear me,” Peyton Manning said. “So really I was walking up to the line of scrimmage to make a change and try get us on the same page. The ball was snapped. ”
Ramirez disagreed and took full responsibility for what happened.
“It was real loud. We were trying to go on the cadence. I thought I heard him. I didn’t,” Ramirez said. “He was actually walking up to me because he had already said the cadence, and I snapped it. But again,
I take full responsibility for that. It’s just something that we should have been able to overcome, and we weren’t able to … It’s not an excuse. It shouldn’t have happened.”
The biggest letdown of the entire night was probably the special team unit that fucked up so bad on the kick return; that put the offense under even more pressure all because nobody on the special teams could remember how to make a tackle.
Almost because they didn’t want to. Despicable.
THE SUPER BORED MVP
Guess who the MVP of this game was? Had anyone asked me this question before Sunday’s game, I may have given about six different answers. Of course, Peyton Manning would have been my favourite, but it could have gone to a number of players (forgetting the actual results of the game of course), they could have been in no particular order:
Beast Mode (Marshawn Lynch)
Damaryius Thomas or
Obviously none of the above were named MVP. None of them were even close. Not by a long shot. They were all so not good enough that none of them combined could have qualified even for one of those split-MVP awards. Not in this game. Not even close. In sports, anything is possible but this was absolutely ridiculous.
A no-name linebacker won the award! Are you fucking kidding me? I honestly believe that those dignitaries whose votes count for this award were probably at a total loss to name their picks.
If you ask me, I may have gone with a non-player. How about Bruno Mars? Lol.
Maybe this proves that even if you have one of the best quarterbacks in the world, if your coach is an idiot, you can still get taken down.
BACK TO THE BRONCOS
They did not pick themselves up. They did not dust themselves off. They did not show to be the team that had traveled over so much rocky road on its way to the Super Bowl. Especially troubling Sunday was the fact that first domino got tipped over on the first play from scrimmage.
Center Manny Ramirez and quarterback Peyton Manning were not only not on the same page. They weren’t even in the same playbook.
On first-and-10 from the Broncos’ 14-yard line, with the crowd still in a full froth of anticipation, Manning moved up to the line of scrimmage to change the play as Ramirez snapped the ball past the his head.
You have Seahawks guys like Bobby Wagner who says his team “sucked the life right out of them.”
I disagree completely.
That suggests the Broncos had life to begin with.
They didn’t have any life, or else they would have had more points on the scoreboard. This Denver team simply did not want to win. Watching them for two hours or so on Sunday night, that was my only conclusion.
“I thought our execution wasn’t really sharp,” Manning told the media while wearing a suit. He was damn right about that.
He wouldn’t comment about Seattle’s defense being the best he has ever faced. It was more like his own offense was the worst he’s ever seen. I cannot remember the last time (if ever) Manning was held to eight points in a football game. Although it has happened.
“I don’t know if you ever really get over it. It’s a difficult pill to swallow. But you do try and make it fuel you for next year.”
Manning said he didn’t feel himself or anyone else on the team being nervous. “The first play was a crazy play,” he noted.
“We just didn’t play very well,” says TE Wes Welker. “It can be a cruel game sometimes. There were so many opportunities that we just missed out on. We just didn’t play very well.”
This is the kind of loss that can really fuck with a team that doesn’t have a lot of experience.
Most people argue that Seattle’s defense is that good, I argue that Denver was just plain pathetic all night long.
Even this description which was put together by USA TODAY is absolute nonsense:
“The offensive line that had barely allowed Manning to be touched in two AFC playoff games (and hadn’t allowed a sack) couldn’t handle Seattle’s ferocious front seven, as Manning had little time to throw and rarely looked comfortable in the pocket. Even if there was time for Manning to throw, the Broncos’ receivers struggled to get open deep against Seattle’s physical defensive backs.”
Manning had time numerous times for the completions. As his stats show, he made 34 of 49 passes and put up 28 yards. Most of those passes were made West Coast Offense style, but he had plenty going, but someone on that Bronco offense wasn’t fully into this game.
I’ve never ever seen a sports event more boring than this year’s Super Bowl.
What an absolute disappointment.
Terrible, terrible showing by the supposed home team.
Now it’s time to listen to all of the possible excuses for not winning the game. And there have already been some good ones.
Might have been a lot easier if President Obama was correct when he predicted 24-21.
What a pathetically boring game.
Don’t know what’s worse, for us the fans, or the players who now have to try and piece together EVERYTHING that went wrong.
I hate to single out the first bad snap by Manning’s centre Mr. Ramirez, whom to his credit, has taken the blame for that, but the entire team was out of sync.
I think I screamed ‘Yes Wes!’ once that night. And it wasn’t after his catch on the two-point conversion after the Broncos only touchdown.
The offense played well for awhile, but it took until the second quarter, the defense was solid for the opening quarter, but the special teams fucked up beyond belief at the WORST POSSIBLE time.
Still don’t get it.
Wanted to throw up for most of it, could not believe how Denver’s team couldn’t get anything going.
I still want to throw up and it’s Friday night.
Seattle didn’t even have to score any touchdowns on offense, they still would have won the game.
Manning did well on a 2nd down and 22 but they missed on a 4th and 2 in the second quarter.
Denver played the way I was hoping that Seattle would.
The great irony is that Manning and Broncos — lauded in the days leading up to the Super Bowl for their experience and attention to detail — looked wholly unprepared against a team with exactly zero Super Bowl experience.
I heard on Wednesday afternoon at work that Manning was paid off to relay his signals to the Seattle defense who claimed that they knew every play he was going to make. This stuff crosses the lines of craziness HOWEVER when you consider the final score was something that nobody in their right mind could have ever foreseen, I would believe just about anything right now.
Sure people bet on Seattle to win and all, but how many of them bet they would just run away with it?
Think about it this way, had the game come down to one final possession for Denver and Manning was looking at piecing together the Super Bowl-winning drive and there was one play left to go, and the Seahawks held on to a three-point lead and their defense stuffed Knowshon Moreno on the goal line, THEN you give Seattle’s D all the credit in the world for stopping the greatest quarterback and his offense, in the world.
But that didn’t happen. This game wasn’t even close. Something was horribly horribly wrong here. Peyton Manning hasn’t been held to eight points in an NFL game in close to 10 years.
A little Google work by me shows that the last time Manning led his team to fewer than 10 points was during the 2004 postseason when he fell to the Patriots while playing for the Indianapolis Colts. The final score was 20-3.
Something else I heard involved Manning asking Pete Carroll when to expect to be paid for ‘throwing’ the football game. How else would Seattle have claimed to know exactly where Manning was going to go on each play. They are a good team but wtf?
Manning called Omaha so many times against the Chargers and Patriots. I think maybe he should consider moving there.
I’m just kidding. Sort of.
Well 17 long weeks of NFL action and now we all know who the opponents will be for the 20013-14 Super Bowl championship.
And then there were two. We started out the weekend with four teams left, two of them lost (obviously), now there are two left standing and one of them will finish as the world champions for the season.
Denver 26 New England 16
This game could have gone down as one of the greatest championship games to determine the AFC winner. It did not. It wasn’t even close to great. ‘Good’ yes, great, no. Fun to watch? Sort of, but it wasn’t a spectacle.
Denver had a 10-0 lead early and never ever looked back.
Other than determine a Super Bowl finalist, it may have reignited that debate over who the better of the two quarterbacks is. Brady was 10-4 heading into the game.
Manning is taking the Broncos on a trip to New York for the Super Bowl after another of his impeccably crafted victories — this time, a 26-16 win over the Patriots on Sunday in the AFC Championship Game.
“Being in my 16th season, going to my third Super Bowl, I know how hard it is to get there,” Manning said.
Especially this time.
Only three years ago, he could barely grip a football as he started the long comeback from surgeries that ravaged his neck and nerve endings. And only 53 weeks ago, he suffered a devastating loss to Baltimore in the divisional playoffs that derailed what looked like a Super Bowl trip in his comeback season.
Now, after a huge win Sunday afternoon in the last game this season to be played at Sports Authority Field, he now has the chance to become the first starting quarterback to win the world championship with two different teams. Manning beat the Chicago Bears in the 2007 Super Bowl XLI in Miami while playing for the team that drafted him, the Indianapolis Colts.
The Indy-turned-Denver QB improved to 5-10 lifetime in matches against Tom Brady but is now 2-1 in AFC title games.
They should re-name this game, to honour one or both of these two quarterbacks. It seems like one of them is always in it.
Manning threw for 400 yards, however just like in the playoff run he had with the Colts in 2007’s playoff run, the field-goal kicking was also heavily relied upon. Then Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri had five in the win against Baltimore during that run; Sunday vs the Patriots, Broncos kicker Matt Prater kicked four.
This was the third time in his illustrious career that Manning aired it out for 400 yards in a single playoff game. He is tied with the Saints’ Drew Brees in that regard.
The biggest key in Sunday’s win was Manning’s engineering of those time-eating touchdown drives. When he gets ‘settled in there’ he is nearly impossible to stop. Two drives, one was 93-yards, and a second was 80-yards, each ate up more than seven minutes of clock time. Brady had his first possession of the second half with time running out in the third quarter. The Broncos held the ball for 35:44. Also important, they converted on 7/13 of their third-down conversions. Brady was stopped cold on at least one of his fourth-down efforts (he was sacked on a 4th-and-2).
“To keep Tom Brady on the sideline is a good thing,” Manning said. “That’s something you try to do when you’re playing the Patriots.”
Manning capped the second long drive with a 3-yard pass to Demaryius Thomas, who got inside the overmatched Alfonzo Dennard and left his feet to make the catch. It gave Denver a 20-3 lead midway through the third quarter.
From there, it was time to play catch-up for the Brady Bunch; of all the years when that team could do that, this year wasn’t one of them, proves there is only so much a superstar quarterback can do in this league. Hopefully 2-3 years down the road there will be another installment of ‘Manning vs Brady’.
“We got in a hole there,” Brady said. “It was just too much to dig our way out.”
Not helping matter for the Patriots was top-notch cornerback Aquib Talib went down with a knee injury. That more or less meant that Broncos WR Demaryius Thomas was going to have an easy night because nobody else on the Pats had a chance in hell of matching up against him.
“Talib’s an excellent player,” Manning said, “but Demaryius was going to be a big part of the game plan, either way.”
A team that averaged more than 200 yards on the ground the last three games didn’t have much quick-strike capability. Brady, who threw for most of his 277 yards in comeback mode, actually led the Patriots to a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns. But they were a pair of time-consuming, 80-yard drives. The second cut the deficit to 26-16 with 3:07 left, but the Broncos stopped Shane Vereen on the 2-point conversion and the celebration was on in Denver.
There was some belief that the Pats were using house money in this game. With everything they had been through, they were probably a little blown away themselves that they were within one win of playing for the Super Bowl. The team lost at least three big guns – Wes Welker (to the Broncos, Rob Gronkowski, who has had more injuries than a Chinesse phone book has Chins, and Aaron Hernandez, who is still a murder suspect.)
Head Coach Bill Belichick remains with three titles, and has not won since the NFL busted him for the Spygate videotaping scandal.
Seattle 23 San Francisco 17
The final game of the season that isn’t the Super Bowl game itself was the championship game of the NFC played Sunday night at SecureLInk Field in Seattle, Wash. The next time any of us will see any pro football on the TV, it will be on the biggest stage in the world.
SF had the lead early off a field goal and they added a touchdown in the second quarter, things looked good heading into the second half but the home side Seahawks scored 20 points in the second half.
Seattle’s top-ranked defense forced three fourth-quarter turnovers, and Russell Wilson threw a 35-yard touchdown pass on fourth down for the winning points. Seattle will meet Denver (15-3) for the NFL title in two weeks in the New Jersey Meadowlands. It’s the first trip to the big game for the Seahawks (15-3) since they lost to Pittsburgh after the 2005 season.
The conference champs had the best records in the league this year, the second time the top seeds have gotten to the Super Bowl in 20 seasons. It also is a classic confrontation of Denver’s record-setting offense led by Peyton Manning against the NFL’s stingiest defense. Denver opened as a 1-point favorite over Seattle on the Glantz-Culver Line.
“It will be a great matchup,” coach Pete Carroll said. “I think it’s an extraordinary opportunity to go against a guy that set all the records in the history of the game.”
Moments after Sherman tipped Colin Kaepernick’s pass to Smith for the interception, the All-Pro cornerback jumped into the stands behind the end zone, saluting the Seahawks’ raucous fans. With 12th Man flags waving everywhere, and “New York, New York” blaring over the loudspeakers, CenturyLink Field rocked like never before.
Until Seattle’s top-ranked defense forced a fumble and had two interceptions in the final period, the game was marked by big offensive plays in the second half. That was somewhat shocking considering the strength of both teams’ defenses.
Seattle simply had no answers for Kaepernick’s runs, looking either flat-footed or plain-out lost when he took off. He gained 98 yards on the ground in the first half, including a 58-yard second-quarter run, the longest of his three-year career and the longest Seattle’s defense allowed all season.
The Super Bowl in two weeks will mark the fifth time since the NFL-AFL merger that the No. 1-ranked offense and the No. 1-ranked defense will meet in the final game of the season. The last time it happened was 1990, when the New York Giants and their top-ranked defense beat Buffalo and its top-ranked offense. Overall, the top-ranked defense has won three times, and the top-ranked offense has won once.
Against San Francisco, the Seattle defense created three fourth-quarter turnovers. It kept handing the ball back to the offense. When the Seahawks had to get a stop, they did. When they had to force a fumble, they did. When they needed an interception, they got one, and then another.
Denver will be a different challenge than San Francisco. Against the 49ers, the Seahawks had to account for Kaepernick’s legs. Kaepernick rushed 11 times for 130 yards while also completing 14 of 24 passes for 153 yards and a touchdown.
Peyton Manning threw 55 touchdown passes and just 10 interceptions in the regular season. In playoff wins over San Diego and New England, Manning completed 72.2 percent of his passes for 630 yards, with four touchdowns and one interception.
“[Manning] deserves to be there because of what he’s done this year with his team and that whole club,” Seattle coach Pete Carroll said.
“But we’re not going to take this challenge lightly. We’re going to go after this thing and we’re not going into this game any other way but thinking that we’re going to win. These guys don’t know any other way.”
Certainly Sherman doesn’t. He proved that once and for all against San Francisco, and as a result, the Seahawks are going to the Super Bowl.
After the second week of the NFL playoffs, I can now say the upsets seemed to have stopped. I think going back to Week 13-14 of the regular season at least, there were at least two big ones per week, now that the post season is two weeks into it, the upsets seem to have come to a halt. Now we are heading to the Super Bowl semi finals, now there are only four teams left, now there are only four games to write about each Monday, and obviously Monday Night Football is now a thing of the past.
Now all I know is that I would not want to be the NFC team right now, whoever wins the NFC is going to have to go up against one of the most experienced quarterbacks the league has ever seen (Brady or Manning).
Seattle 23 New Orleans 15
This result may have been an upset 2-3 years ago but not now. Somehow though, Drew Brees threw for over 300 yards and still lost. Russell Wilson only threw for 109 yards, no touchdowns accounted for, and he still won. Seattle dominated the entire first half, that is probably why they won this game, after a scoreless third quarter, New Orleans scored all of their 15 points in the fourth quarter but could not convert to tie the game. The Seahawks had only lost one game all season long, that was on Dec. 22 when (speaking of upsets) lost 17-10 at home to Arizona.
New England 43 Indianapolis 22
Andrew Luck’s good luck had to come to an end sooner or later, this game proves that Tom Brady will continue to be a force to be reckoned with even at this stage in his career. Mind you it wasn’t his arm that did all of the damage in this game it was rusher LeGarrette Blount who had 24 carries and scored four touchdowns totaling 166 yards. Like Seattle, New England is good at home, in fact they are a perfect 8-0.
“Once I get into the open field, they’re going to have to chase me,” Blount said. “And if they catch me, they do. And if they don’t, they don’t. They usually don’t.”
I hate to keep using stupid luck puns but his good luck stopped with his first four-INT game possibly ever, his interception total was double his touchdown total. Why does this result remind me of the days when the Pats used to dominate the Colts when they had Manning at the helm?
“I’m just disappointed in myself,” Luck said. “I can’t commit that many turnovers and have a chance to win against a great team like this.”
Luck threw 3 picks a week ago against the Kansas City Chiefs in the wild card game but led the Colts from a 38-10 deficit to win.
San Francisco 23 Carolina 10
For the third year in a row, San Francisco is heading to the NFC championship game. Carlina made it tight in the second quarter, yet could not score at all in the second half and there goes the season. For a team that dominated through most of the year to the point that they got to host a playoff game (rather than go on the road), a 12-4 record for a team that doesn’t usually accumulate numbers like that, it was a pretty good season, but apparently SF is a slightly better team. Back on Nov. 10, Carolina celebrated its skinniest margin of victory with a 10-9 win over these same 49ers. In yesterday’s game, both QBs Kaepernick and Newton had so-so outings. Kaepernick had only 196 passing yards, Newton had 267, both only had one touchdown pass, mind you Newton’s was a beauty after the Niners defense stopped Carolina dead in their tracks on two red-zone visits, one of which forced a turnover on downs. Carolina was held scoreless for in the second half.
Denver 24 San Diego 17
Most of our eyes should have been on this one from start to finish. If one of these four weekend games was marked for overtime, it very well could have been this one. Denver took a 17-0 lead into the fourth quarter but Phillip Rivers nearly completed the comeback performance of his life reminiscent of Baltimore’s shocking win at Mile High last year.
On that night Jacoby Jones hauled in a 70-yard pass from Joe Flacco to tie it with less than a minute left then Denver coach John Fox had Manning take a knee so the team could regroup in overtime. Then Manning threw an interception and we all know what happened after that.
This time Manning connected with a couple guys to secure huge first downs and sent Denver to the AFC championship game where they will host New England.
Get ready for Manning vs Brady once more.
“It’s the Broncos versus the Patriots and certainly Tom and I have played against each other a lot,” Manning said. “But when you get to the AFC Championship, it’s about two good teams that have been through a lot to get there.”
In winning the game last night, Manning hit receiver Julius Thomas for a 1st down on a 3rd-down-and 17. Then near midfield, on a 3rd-down-and 2, he handed off to Knowshon Moreno who ran for five yards with 1:12 remaining and the Broncos ran the clock down.
“When they got that first down I was jumping up and down,” Broncos defensive lineman Malik Jackson said. “It was delightful.”
San Diego got back into it after scoring a TD to come to within 10 points, then they recovered an onside kick and scored a field goal. If they had done it again, they very well could have tied the game, but they didn’t.
San Diego missed a 53-yard field goal by a few inches in the first half, that could have been big had that counted considering the way the rest of the game went. Denver was presented with two opportunities of 1st-and-5 in the game, on back-to-back plays after the Chargers defense was called for neutral-zone infractions.
“If we got it one more time, I believe deep down we would’ve tied that thing up,” Rivers said. “But we didn’t. Those are all a bunch of what-ifs.”
San Diego defenders were also dropping like flies through the game Marcus Gilchrist was hit in the head by his own player. Rookie LB Manti Te’o (Notre Dame) was also out with a concussion.
Some analysts were predicting Manning to have another outbreak of a game last night, but that didn’t happen. He did complete 25 of 36 passes for 230 yards and was a pleasure in interview after the game and his two TD throws weren’t quite up to the standards he set during the regular season where he established new records for TD passes (55) and 5,447 yards. On key stat from that game was Manning was able to control the ball for 35 ½ minutes last night.
GAME NOTES: Denver’s Eric Decker may have put the game out of reach in the first half after a kick return for 47 yards but he tripped at the San Diego 30-yard line. Decker also missed a TD catch in the end zone that bounced into the arms of Charger LB Donald Butler, resulting in Manning’s first red zone interception of the season.