A New Jersey Mugging: Did Seahawks-Massacre Put Manning’s Legacy On Hold?


Feeling sick? Manning was mugged; legacy on hold?

Many sports fans are still trying to recover from last Sunday’s spectacle.

Who would’ve believed in their wildest imagination, being a Denver Broncos fan or even a Seattle Seahawks fan—“the 12th Man”—that we would witness a total destruction of a legendary winning football franchise with a future hall of fame Quarterback Peyton Manning at the helm?

It unfolded, starting 6:30 P.M., at the Met Life Stadium, East Rutherford, New Jersey; it ended with the fledgling upstart Seattle Seahawks defeating the favorite Denver Broncos 43 to 8.

How could it? Why did this happen you might ask yourself as I did when the Broncos all season boasted of the best offense behind Manning scoring an N.F.L.-record 606 points and 55 touchdowns? The team attacked from the air and on the ground with players like Knowshon Moreno who all season was like a run-away-freight train.

From a psychological perspective perhaps in reality the Denver Broncos were a façade. The team performed all season so successfully, breaking so many records, that when they finally reached the big show the Broncos just crumbled.

From the very first snap they misplayed a Manning call resulting in a safety penalty of 2 points. Almost immediately you could see that they were very nervous and Manning’s look was very distant and unsure of himself, and his play calling. The Broncos were really never in the game at all from the very beginning.

When Seattle got the ball they ran the ball well enough to score a field goal; by halftime the Seahawks led 22-0.

Seattle just simply outplayed and outclassed the Broncos, who were the overwhelming favorite to win and give Peyton Manning his second Super Bowl victory and possibly the M.V.P. award. Younger brother Eli painfully watched the destruction from his upper deck family booth.

Before the Seahawks started pounding away at Manning and the Broncos, I remember thinking that this game would be a low scoring one because of the Seattle defense. I began to feel that the Broncos were actually afraid of the Seahawks offensively and defensively; not running at the Seattle defense for fear of being hit. The Bronco defense was unable to cover the opposing receivers who scored almost at will.

Quarterback Russell Wilson who this summer will play for the Texas Rangers baseball team –he is a two sports person– in my opinion should’ve been the M.V.P. despite the fact that eventual winner linebacker Malcolm Smith intercepted one of Manning’s throws and ran 69 yards for a touchdown; he also recovered a fumble, pounded the Broncos with his arm, his speed, and run that put the game away.

Seattle was just too fast and too furious. The double-teamed Moreno and put the hurt. Moreno had to sit out the rest of the game. 

In the 3rd quarter Manning finally threw a touchdown pass to Demaryius Thomas. The Broncos- went for the 2 point conversion for a laughable final score of 8.

Perhaps the noise of the almost 89,000 fans rattled Manning and the Broncos. Manning didn’t even yell out his famous Omaha signal. They were just simply outplayed by a better team that forgot they were too youthful and lacked Super Bowl experience.

Will they repeat next year? We will just have to wait and see. The brilliant young players, including outspoken corner Richard Sherman, who did not play in the fourth quarter because of a badly sprained ankle, are all tied to Seattle by contracts.

What will happen to Peyton Manning’s legacy?  The Broncos have lost 5 Super Bowl games, to: the Cowboys, Giants, Redskins, San Francisco 49ers and now to the Seahawks. “I do not consider that loss as an embarrassment, we just did not play to our potential,” a very downcast Manning, later said. If it had been a boxing match his corner would have waved the towel at the end of the first quarter.

Another big winner was the Big Apple. Visitors added to the City’s economy;  due to mother nature’s cruelty they had to stay another day, with the snow storm.

I close this column with a recap of pugilism, which is what I normally cover:

At The Barclays Center, Thursday, January 30, with almost 10,000 fight fans, many out-of-towners, in attendance, Luis Collazo finally got his due by knocking out Victor Ortiz with a vicious right hook at 2:59 seconds of the 2nd round; he won the W.B.A. International Welterweight Title. Teary-eyed Collazo, declared: “This is my time now I want the bigger fights. Mayweather is planning to come to Brooklyn, so I want him right here at the Barclays”.

Eddie Gomez, 16-0, 10 k.o.’s, 147 pound undefeated rising star from the Bronx by way of Honduras, continues to impress winning a unanimous 10 round decision over a former amateur rival, Daquan Arnett; and 126 pound favorite also undefeated, Gary Russell, Jr., 24-0, 11 knockouts, scored a 4th round knockout over Miguel Tamayo.

Meantime, on the other side of the river, on Friday, January 31, 2014, at the Richard J. Cody Arena, West Orange, New Jersey, at another packed house, we saw Australian import south-paw  Blake Caparello Light Heavyweight remain undefeated, 19-0-1, by winning a unanimous decision over Elvir Muriqi.

At the end of the fight, Muriqi, 40-6, stated that he was retiring from boxing.

Nineteen year old phenom, Junior Younan, super middleweight continued on his knockout streak by scoring his 3rd straight k.o. victory knocking out Thomas Allen at 1:09 of the 1st  round of an action packed fight card.

How can New York top all this kind of sports activity? Maybe the Olympic Games.



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