Who you got in the Super Bowl? Here's my pick
So, it’s Super Bowl Sunday, who you got?
I got barbecue ribs fixin’ to go on for a slow smoke. I have libations. I got a high def TV. I have friends and family coming to watch.
As always, we have Mississippi connections on both teams.
The way I got it figured, I can’t lose.
The question is: Can I pick a winner? As everyone else, I’ve gota 50-50 chance. In the case of this Super Bowl, that is good. Because this is what I call a flip-your-coin game. It’s even.
Here are some of the most important factors, as I see it:
• How will they call it? Will they let them play? This is especially true in the secondary where the Seahawks are so good and so physical. So much of what the Broncos do is based on timing. If the officials let the Seattle defenders knock (and hold) the Broncos receivers off their routes, it favors Seattle, big time.
• Apparently we will have fast, dry track. In my mind, that favors the Broncos because Seattle, with Marshawn Lynch, is the more physical, better running team.
• The 12th man. In this case, Russell Wilson’s running constitutes that. I would expect him to run much more than he would in a regular season game. Denver has to account for him. If not, he can beat the Broncos with his arms as well as his legs. This could be Wilson’s big coming-out party. People talk about Peyton Manning’s grasp of the game and how thoroughly he prepares. Wilson takes much the same approach. Says Bus Cook, his Hattiesburg-based agent, “Nobody watches more film or studies the game any harder than Russell. I’ve never seen anything like him.”
• Watch Chris Clark, the Broncos left tackle, who has been outstanding since stepping in for All Pro Ryan Clady in the third game of the season. I’m guessing Pete Carroll is going to send everybody (including Mississippi State’s K.J. Wright) at Peyton Manning from his blind side. Clark, a former undrafted free agent out of Southern Miss, is one of the key players in the game.
• And, finally, here’s the factor that turns the game for me: Peyton Manning. I just can’t pick against him, not after the season he has had and what he has come back from to get to this point in his career. Two years ago, we didn’t know if he would play again. And now he has just completed the greatest NFL season a quarterback has ever experienced. I believe Seattle has the better 53-man roster, but Denver has Peyton.
Pick against him if you like.
Denver 26, Seattle 24.