For all of the months of talk about a potential bad weather Super Bowl, the conditions in New Jersey couldn’t be better for a February evening. Quickly, the narrative returned to the best offense of all time facing the best defense in the league on the biggest stage of all. After countless overanalysis of Richard Sherman’s attitude, Peyton Manning’s legacy, and Marshawn Lynch’s interview prowess, the only thing left to do was finally play that final one hour of football.
While Denver was the highest scoring offense, Seattle scored the most points of any team from the defensive end. They got good help from Max Ramirez as the center snapped the ball early on the very first play of the game, sending it sailing over Peyton Manning’s head and into the endzone for a safety. Seattle 2, Denver 0.
Seattle got the ball on the safety punt and ran eight plays for 55 yards but were stopped inside the 10-yard line and were forced to kick. Hauschka nailed the 31-yard attempt to put Seattle up by five. Seattle 5, Denver 0.
Seattle’s defense contained Denver’s O on the next drive, forcing a quick three-and-out. Seattle marched down 58 yards on 12 plays but a Russell Wilson endzone pass couldn’t be hauled in by Jermaine Kearse and the ‘Hawks had to settle for another field goal. Seattle 8, Denver 0.
After not scoring for two consecutive drives for the first time this postseason, Manning took over intent to finally move the ball, completing a quick five-yard pass to Wes Welker and rushing the offense back to the line. Immediately, Knowshon Moreno fumbled it after a short run but the ball was recovered by Denver. On the very next play, Manning overthrew Julius Jones and the ball sailed directly into the hands of Seattle’s Kam Chancellor.
Taking over at the Denver 37, Seattle ran the ball down the Broncos’ throat, capping off another solid drive with a Marshawn Lynch touchdown run. Seattle 15, Denver 0.
Peyton was finally able to convert some first downs as he ran down a tough 16-play, 49-yard drive but was hit as he threw on a 3rd-and-13, under throwing Knowshon Moreno. Malcolm Smith stepped in front of the receiver to catch the pass and brought it back for a 69-yard touchdown. Seattle 22, Denver 0.
Peyton was able to move the ball again, running a 48-yard drive but failing to convert a fourth-down and giving Seattle back the ball at the Seattle 19-yard line with a minute left in the half. Seattle simply ran down the clock to take a three-score lead into halftime.
Seattle got the ball to start the half. Things didn’t go well for Denver. Percy Harvin brought the ball back for a 87-yard touchdown kickoff return to put the game even farther away. Seattle 29, Denver 0.
Denver was able to run 10 plays on the next drive but only moved it 38 yards and were forced to punt.
It took just three plays for Denver to turn the ball over yet again as Peyton Manning completed a pass to Demaryius Thomas that was punched out of his hands by Byron Maxwell and recovered by Malcolm Smith.
Starting at Denver’s 42, Russell Wilson led a quick 58-yard drive capped off by a 23-yard touchdown pass to Jermaine Kearse to put Seattle up by five scores. Seattle 36, Denver 0.
On the next drive, Denver finally got it going, a little too late, as Peyton needed just six plays to move the ball 80 yards before getting the team on the board with a 14-yard pass to Demaryius Thomas. Peyton completed a pass to Wes Welker to convert the two-point attempt. Seattle 36, Denver 8.
It didn’t matter. Russell Wilson marched the offense down once again, taking up just five plays before a 10-yard touchdown pass to Doug Baldwin to put the game even further out of reach. Seattle 43, Denver 8.
Denver turned the ball over on downs on their next drive, as did the Seahawks. Denver got it back and were stopped again. They attempted to go for it on fourth down but the ball was stripped out of Peyton’s hand by Chris Clemons for yet another Denver turnover. Seattle opted to run down more clock before turning the ball over on downs once again. It was too little, too late though, as Denver just ran down the clock and Seattle, inevitably, took the game.
The Seattle Seahawks win the Super Bowl 43-8.