Ladies and gentlemen the evening is upon us. The amazing Sunday that everybody decides that American Football is suddenly incredibly important. We at The College Tribune fully support this blatant bandwagoning and have thusly created a helpful guide to get you through the three hours of potential tedium in between beautifully bizarre and expensive advertisements, or if you have a TV and go down the BBC route a usually amazing compilation of the seasons highlights.
Where to watch
For beginners the only place to go is the BBC. Mark Champman’s team will fill the inordinate number of gaps for advertisements with insightful analysis on the game that usually manages to cradle the gap between basic explanation and proper insight. The commentary team is unfortunately not the best but as there is only the one broadcaster you’re stuck with that either way. A perusal through the usual streaming site will help you find a good one.
The Carolina Panthers are undoubtedly the most exciting team to watch in the NFL at the moment led by their incredibly talented quarterback Cam Newton. The Panthers finished their regular season with a 15-1 record (won every game bar one) surprising everyone not least themselves. Newton, an incredibly likeable individual, has been touted as a star since his college days but he has taken his game up several notches. He runs and passes the ball incredibly well and this will be incredibly important against the Denver defence that would be considered one of the best in the league.
Supporting Newton are some of the fastest receivers in the country and an impressive offensive line protecting him. The clear faith that they have in each other after such an impressive season will stand too them if they need to mount a comeback. Fans of Sandra Bullock might also recognise the name Michael Oher in the Panther’s offence. The offensive tackle was the basis of the movie the blind side.
The Carolina defence has rightfully taken a back seat to a star offence but they were an incredibly important part of their successful season. The only real wobble that they faced came in the post season against Seattle who nearly came back to tie a game after being more than 20 points down in the first half. They will be looking for players like Luke Kuechly to halt Manning’s offence. A difficult chance for sure.
The Denver Broncos.
In Peyton Manning the Broncos have one of the true greats of American Football. Manning, nearly 40, has the NFL record for touchdown passes and has the experience of 18 NFL seasons and has been to 14 pro bowls. His career is only marred by his Super Bowl record winning only once in his four attempts. The last Superbowl Manning played in the Broncos were absolutely terrible and he will be desperate to make amends for that. The years have not been kind to him unfortunately when it comes to injuries so don’t expect to see him play many 40 yard passes.
The offence surrounding Manning took a long time to get started this year with his aforementioned injuries causing him several issues. Now however his team looks to have picked up a gear being incredibly impressive against the New England Patriots in the championship game. Manning will have to play incredibly quickly and he knows this.
The Broncos defence on the other hand will be going into this game incredibly confident. They completely shut down the New England offence in Denver and will look to do the same here. They are strong in the tackles and possess incredibly quick safeties with a great ability to catch the ball.
All told both teams are incredibly balanced and fun to watch. The run of form that the Panthers are on and Manning’s history with the final would suggest that they are a good bet to win the trophy and confuse many racist Americans about whether they should applaud the obvious talents of a black quarter back. The game will come down to whose defence does the best job of getting the ball back into their quarterback’s hands. At the very least the game is bound to be exciting. And really who has anything important on Monday morning anyway.
Neil Ryan, Sports Editor