Super Bowl XLVIII promises to be an exciting match-up

By Josh Bennett
Assistant Sports Editor

The Super Bowl is considered one of the most watched events of the year. According to Forbes, over 108 million people worldwide watching the game last season. That is the equivalent of a third of the US population tuning in. Here is a preview of Super Bowl XLVIII and the festivities surrounding it.

The game itself features the best team from the American Football Conference, the Denver Broncos, and best team from the National Football Conference, the Seattle Seahawks. This is a feat that has only occurred eight times since 1978, the first year the wildcard was included in the playoffs, most recently back in Super Bowl XLIV with the Saints and Colts.

One of the big stories coming into the game is the resurgence of Peyton Manning. Manning has broken all of the major single-season records for a quarterback, and he can cap off the greatest season ever for a quarterback with a Super Bowl win. The Broncos also had the highest scoring offense in NFL history, scoring 606 points according to With Manning and the Broncos’ excellent passing attack as well as a solid running game, the Broncos offense is certainly very tough to stop.

However, if one team was to be able to go toe-to-toe with this record setting offense, it’s the Seahawks. They can match up with Denver’s passing game, as they were the best defense in terms of giving up the least amount of passing yards, total yards and points scored according to The Seahawks’ defense was a scrappy, tenacious group led by cornerback Richard Sherman who usually makes headlines with his mouth, but has the ability to back it up on the field.

While the main attraction of the game will be Denver’s offense against Seattle’s defense. Outside of Seattle’s great running game, led by Marshawn Lynch, Seattle struggles with passing. They are ranked 26th in the NFL. Seattle’s special team is one of the best in the league, and it will show come the Super Bowl.

While Denver is good at stopping the run themselves, being ranked 7th, they also struggle defending the pass, which makes this matchup just as intriguing. One big concern for Denver is that they will be missing multiple key players on defense, meaning that some bench players will be required to step up for the big game. Denver’s team is also very good, which includes kicker Matt Prater, who set the record for longest field goal this season with a 64-yard kick.

The other main part of the Super Bowl is an off the field component: the commercials. According to a poll by Gravity Six Alliance via Harris Interactive, 55% of adults who watch the Super Bowl have an equal or higher interest in the commercials. The cost of a 30 second ad this year is about $4 million. According to Forbes, Some of the expected good commercials seem to be from Budweiser, Butterfinger and H&M.

The halftime show looks to be a good one as well. Bruno Mars, who is Billboard’s reining Artist of the Year, always has multiple songs in rotation on pop radio. He is also nominated for Record of the Year and Song of the Year at this year’s Grammys. Mars is the next in line of the NFL beginning to put popular acts back into the halftime show, which began last year with Beyoncé.

Joining Mars will be Rock and Roll Hall of Famers The Red Hot Chili Peppers. The August 2013 issue of Rolling Stone placed the Peppers at no. 21 of the best live acts in music. Rolling Stone also placed Bruno Mars at no. 35.

One last factor for the Super Bowl this year will be the weather. It will be the coldest game in Super bowl history, as it is the first game played in an outdoors stadium in a cold weather location. According to the Weather Channel, they anticipate the temperature to be in the high 30’s to low 40’s. They also predict there might be some lingering precipitation early on Sunday. Both teams are used to playing in cold and miserable weather, Seattle having to play in the rain and Denver playing in snow.

This should be a very exciting and entertaining game. Denver’s offense verses Seattle’s defense has been an anticipated encounter by many, and Seattle’s offense verses Denver’s defense will end up being game defining. However, Seattle’s defense will slow down Denver some, but I don’t see Seattle’s offense keeping up with what the Broncos will be able to do on offense.

Prediction: Denver 31 Seattle 27