On Sunday, Jan. 2, the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks will kickoff in the 48th Super Bowl. The Broncos' No. 1 offense will face off versus the Seahawks' No. 1 defense.

In this post, I will breakdown both teams and give my predictions for a game that will surely go down to the wire.

Seattle Seahawks

richard sherman january 2014

Stat Leaders

Russell Wilson: 257-407, 3357 yards, 26 TD, 9 INT, 101.1 RTG

Marshawn Lynch: 301 rushes, 1257 Yards, 12 TD

Golden Tate: 64 receptions, 898 yards, 5 TD

Steven Hauschka: 33/35 FG, 3/3 50+

Bobby Wagner: 119 tackles
Michael Bennett: 8.5 sacks
Richard Sherman: 8 INT, TD

Despite losing defensive coordinator Gus Bradley to Jacksonville, the Seahawks D didn't lose a beat under Dan Quinn, and they actually got better.

Richard Sherman had two more interceptions than last season, and free agent acquisitions Cliff Avril  (eight sacks) and Michael Bennett (8.5 sacks) hunted quarterbacks relentlessly. When offenses could get the ball off to the receiver, they had to get through the Legion of Boom, who had four forced fumbles.

The Seahawks offense, despite having limited contributions from Sidney Rice and Percy Harvin, still posted 7.70 yards per pass, fourth-best in the NFL. Russell Wilson, despite falling stats over the last part of the year, made the plays the Seahawks needed to win.

The offense runs through Marshawn Lynch, aka ''Beast Mode," and Wilson makes they key plays downfield to his unheralded receivers and tight ends. Wilson will have to continue making his key plays to win a game of so much magnitude, but he wont be alone.

The defense will look to shut down the red-hot Broncos offense, and that starts up front. The pass rush has been phenomenal all year, sacking the QB on seven percent of QB drop-backs. If they do get it off, the Legion of Boom will be lurking around.

Many people thought they would fall off after Brandon Browner was suspended, but Byron Maxwell stepped up big, holding Anquan Boldin for most of the NFC Championship game. They will have the task of covering Demaryius Thomas, Wes Welker, Eric Decker and Julius Thomas.

Denver Broncos

peyton manning throw january 2014

Stat Leaders

Peyton Manning: 450-659, 5477 yards, 55 TD, 10 INT, 115.1 RTG

Knowshon Moreno: 241 rushes, 1038 yards, 10 TD,

Demaryius Thomas: 92 rec, 1430 yards, 14 TD

Matt Prater: 25-26 FG, 6/7 50+

Danny Trevathan: 125 tackles
Shuan Phillips: 10 sacks
Chris Harris: 3 INT

For the offense, it was record-breaking Week 1 as Peyton Manning threw seven touchdowns on opening night. 16 weeks later, he broke Tom Brady's touchdown record as he found Eric Decker for his 51st TD.

Five Broncos (Julius Thomas, Eric Decker, Demaryius Thomas, Wes Welker, Knowshon Moreno) had double-digit TD's, another NFL record.

For the defense, it was far from record-breaking, but it was enough to keep opponent's from scoring too many points. Now, they will face their biggest test yet, and like the Hawks, it starts up front.

Terrance Knighton, aka "Pot Roast," will lead the charge against Beast Mode. They will also have to pressure Wilson, and keep him from making key runs and passes.

On the offense, they will have to protect Peyton Manning and open holes in the run game. If they are unable, Manning will either have to suffer sacks or force the ball into coverage, where the Seahawks lurk waiting for the big play.

Keys To Victory

peyton manning demaryius thomas january 2014

Seahawks: Run the ball, keep Manning off field The Seahawks don't have the offense to keep up with Manning. Just in case their D can't stop Manning,their best defense will have to be their offense. Marshawn Lynch will have to run, run early and run well for the Hawks to lift the Lombardi trophy.

Broncos: Don't test Richard Sherman Sherman has shut down the likes of Larry Fitzgerald twice, Victor Cruz, Vincent Jackson — the list goes. Not to say those guys are better than Demaryius Thomas, the one will lining up versus Sherman, but the Seahawks CB can definitely take out your top threat. Manning must look elsewhere, although that won't be easier.


broncos vs seahawks 2014

The Seahawks are playing well, and most importantly, Russell Wilson is playing well. It doesn't show up on the stat sheet, but it shows in the win column.

Seattle has a top-notch D, and the Broncos offense does have lapses at times, like ones versus Indianapolis, San Deigo, and New England in the regular season. I think Seattle's D will force Manning into mistakes, which will give the 'Hawks their first ever Super Bowl victory.

Seahawks 30, Broncos 23


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