Super Bowl 50, Denver Broncos vs. Carolina Panthers, Prediction and Analysis

By Devon Newport (devon.newport@mstarsnews.com) | Feb 03, 2016 03:28 PM EST
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One of the bigger spectacles in all of the United States is now just a few days away: the Super Bowl. You know, that one sporting event typically watched by everybody; the same one that gives people a real good excuse to eat an inordinate amount of spinach dip--not to mention the whacky commercials. Yes, that one. And while we could talk about all the intricacies of what makes the Super Bowl what it is, lest we not forget that two teams play actually play a football game, too. This year it's the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers. So let's talk about that. We'll even make a prediction.

Winner prediction: Carolina Panthers. Told you there would be a prediction, we don't waste any time here.

Cam Newton and the Panthers come in as the favorites according to most people--Vegas, too (the Panthers opened as 3.5-point favorites). And while Vegas doesn't always get it right, their pick looks pretty good as we approach the contest.

Yes, both the Broncos and the Panthers come into the Super Bowl as the top seed in their division, but the Panthers have done so far more convincingly. They have displayed perhaps the best offense in the league, and their defense has been good too. Not Denver Broncos good, but they are far more balanced on both sides of the ball. Also, they have Cam Newton, who is the NFL's frontrunner for MVP. He's been lethal both through the air and on the ground, amassing 45 total touchdowns during the regular season--tops in the league.

By contrast, Denver has been dragged to the Super Bowl by their defense, which is widely regarded as the best defense in the league. So they do have that going for them. But the big issue with Denver is on the other side of the ball, on offense with Peyton Manning. It's an odd thing to say about perhaps the best quarterback to ever play the game, but he very well could be the thing that holds back this Broncos team. He'll still run circles around you with his mind, but his body is beginning to show the effects of a long and illustrious career in the NFL. He can't throw the ball with great velocity down the field--short passes he's fine--and he's not at all mobile.

Bottom line: it will be a tough task for Denver to score enough points to beat Carolina, even with that fantastic defense. The smart money is on Carolina.

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