Super Bowl XLVIII PreviewThis is KJ’s time. His man-crush playing against the home town team. I’ll be more concise because I know he has a lot to say. And plus, sadly, my team lost.

GG’s pick

While my fellow 49ers fans are giving me crap for it on the 49ers Facebook page that I run, I’m taking Seattle, and here are three reasons why.

Game recognize game.
I’m no hater. I recognize a great organization and excellent coaching. Even though I don’t have to like them, I enjoy the style of football the Seahawks play. In fact, they are modeled very much so after the 49ers. Look up Scot McCloughan’s name.

If you lose in the game before the Super Bowl, isn’t it better to lose to the actual Super Bowl winning team? I still believe the 49ers were the better football team. And I know that Seahawks fans were scared s***less when the 49ers took the early lead. But the Hawks made the money plays and the 49ers didn’t. There’s no even playing field until the Super Bowl.

I also don’t dislike Richard Sherman. What he said after the NFC title game wasn’t necessary, but then again, he plays a position that isn’t marketed all that well by the NFL. If I asked people who the top five corners in the league are, they would say Darrelle Revis and now because of his outburst, Richard Sherman and then ask me if Deion Sanders was still playing. He shouldn’t have to market himself, but the NFL markets quarterbacks, running backs, receivers, and coaches. That’s about it. I was always taught that you have to advertise your successes because no one else will. And that’s what Sherman did. He just did it in a way that fans at home could might “classless”. Sometimes, you have to knock down that door if you want to be heard.

(For the people who called him a thug, you don’t know what a thug is. For the people who called him brilliant, you probably haven’t been around a lot of brilliant people. If you don’t know him, you can’t judge him off the field. But you can judge him on the field. He’s a football player and a damn good one.)

Lastly, I love to see an edgy Colin Kaepernick. He’s so competitive that he remembers every single team who passed on him in the 2011 NFL Draft. If Russell Wilson wins the game that he couldn’t, Kap might come into camp stronger than Hercules. And he’ll also be a much smarter player. Count on that.

I’m sick of Peyton Manning.
I’m going to get this in before KJ writes his ode to Peyton. But man, I’m tired of hearing about this guy. He’s one of the greatest quarterbacks to lace ‘em up. I don’t disagree with that. But I’ve seen the best. And Peyton Manning isn’t the best. In fact, give me Tom Brady over Peyton every day of the week and twice on Sunday.

But it’s not really Manning’s fault. He works hard. He’s a pure student of the game. He came back from a horrific injury. All of those things are true. It’s the media who treats him like Quarterback Jesus. The last time I checked, Manning only had one Super Bowl ring and time and time again has come up short in games that he shouldn’t have. How about he wins another one or two before we put him in the same breath as Joe Montana, John Elway, and Tom Brady (and yes, in that order).

(I apologize for guys like Otto Graham and Johnny U. I can only grade what I’ve seen.)

The Seahawks just hit too hard.
If you watched both the AFC and NFC championship games back to back, one looked like a touch football game compared to the other. It was drastically different how hard hitting the second game was. I think that’s the difference.

The Hawks hit harder and make small receivers think twice about what they’re doing. They also cover the tight end better than any team in the NFL. Peyton Manning will make some excellent throws. But against the defense that takes the football away better than any other team by far? I think one or two of those slow. knuckleballs get picked off. In fact, I think that will be the difference in the game.

Richard Sherman takes a Peyton Manning duck all the way back to the house in the 4th quarter which is the difference in the game. I don’t think Sherman will call out Manning though. You can’t do that to Quarterback Jesus.

Prediction: Seahawks 27, Broncos 20

KJ’s pick

Hello my name is Kevin.

I live in the greater Seattle area and I’m rooting for the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII.

Let’s see. In the past two weeks, when I’ve had to stop mid-conversation and tell people, “Yeah, I’m excited … but I’m rooting for the Broncos.” I’ve received responses of, “What a bum!” “Let’s kick him!” “You may have to leave the state.” “Why don’t you find a hole to crawl in for the next six days?” I’ve gotten anti-Broncos memes and requests to not say “Omaha!”

Of course, those only make me want to post this video on a the non-Omaha requester’s timeline with the caption, “Because I OMAHA you THIS much!” He deleted it. I kept his “GO HAWKS” and “Seriously, don’t ever post anything Bronco related on my wall again” posts. It’s all part of the fun right?

I’m already looking forward to posting this video, with the caption “Sweet Dreams Seahawks Fans,” on his and the three people that liked his comment’s wall.

It’s been difficult. It’s been fun (I coach a 8/9 year old basketball team and a few weeks back I called our motion offense “Omaha”. So for the last three weeks my kids have been shouting “Omaha! Omaha!” as they come down the court. Some of the parents finally informed the kids what “Omaha” meant. Needless to say, I don’t think they’ll be calling “Omaha” this weekend.). I expect the worse on Monday if the Seahawks win. They can expect a one word answer with video.

Most don’t quite understand why I’m a Broncos fan. Most think I’m just being a Debbie Downer, or just daring to be different. Those that are close to me (or have read mine and Garrett’s NFL chats on PopBlerd!) know that I have Team 1A (Colts) and Team 1B (Broncos). I know, two teams, it’s unfair. But for those 12th Men (and Women) or Orange Crush lovers, who think that I just jumped on the Broncos bandwagon this postseason, you’re wrong. I’ve been following the Broncos for three years (yes, I was one of the crazies that jumped on the Tim Tebow Train the year before Manning arrived), only missed one of their games this year, and that’s because the power went out, and well, I’ll be celebrating my 10th anniversary as a Peyton Manning lover fan this summer.

Are we clear on all this? I’m not anti-Seahawks. My son owns a very-worn Marshawn Lynch jersey (courtesy of my ‘Hawks-lovin’ buddy). I’ve attended at least one regular season game in the last four years and have a great time every time. It’s an incredible atmosphere. Russell Wilson is a class act. The defense is incredible (and kind of scares me). I just heart Peyton Manning (and you can read 18 Reason I Heart Peyton Manning here). If the Seahawks were playing any other AFC team that wasn’t part of the horse family, I’d proudly be sporting my No. 32 Edgerrin James Seahawk jersey (yes, they made those). But they are not.

Super Bowl preview
Are we sure we’re clear on this? Geez … I’m as defensive as the Seahawks D facing Colin Kaepernick’s passing “attack” (shot at GG intended) on this topic. I guess that shows how much heat I’ve taken in the last two weeks.

Okay, on to the game. I’m excited! I’m excited because not only is it two teams that I’ve watched a ton this year, and know a lot about, but because it pits the No. 1 offense versus the No. 1 defense.

The Broncos put up a ridiculous 37.9 points per game this year, outscoring the No. 2 teams (Bears and Patriots) by 10.1 points per contest. The Seahawks allowed 14.4 points per game. The Seahawks didn’t face an offense as potent as the Broncos, with only the New Orleans Saints cracking the top 10 in points per game (Saints were No. 10). The Broncos didn’t face a stout defense like the Seahawks all season. They played three teams in the top 10 in points allowed per contest – the No. 5 Kansas City Chiefs, No. 9 Indianapolis Colts and the No. 10 Patriots. They lost to both the Colts and Patriots, but both contests were not defensive battles with the Colts winning 39-33, and the Patriots winning 34-31.

Offense versus defense? Sure something has to give. The Broncos are likely not going to put up 38 points on the ‘Hawks and Seattle is likely not going to hold Denver to a measly 14 points. I’ll take the push.

Fine, let’s look at common opponents. The Broncos and ‘Hawks faced five common opponents (Jacksonville, New York Giants, Houston, Indianapolis and Tennessee). Both teams finished 4-1 against common opponents, both lost to the Indianapolis Colts, and both played Jacksonville and Tennessee at home and the Giants, Texans and Colts on the road. Um … push!

Told you this was exciting?

What does it come down to? I think it comes down to the Seahawks offense versus the Broncos defense. My two key players: Russell Wilson and Champ Bailey. If Wilson can do what he does best and buy enough time to find his open receivers then the Broncos may have trouble (and their secondary has caused me fits the last two years). Bailey has sat out a majority of the season. He’s playing in his first Super Bowl in 15 years. If he can return – for this game – to the Champ Bailey of old and be that All-Pro cornerback that he is, that would help the Broncos D a ton! The ‘Hawks offense has sputtered as of late, the Broncos defense has stepped up in the postseason (much like Manning’s Colts team in ’06). I’m going to renege on my preseason prediction of the Seahawks winning the Super Bowl and say …

Prediction: Broncos 31, Seahawks 27

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