Broncos hold on in final seconds to advance to Super Bowl 50

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The Broncos are going to Super Bowl 50 by the slimmest of margins.

After a Rob Gronkowski touchdown with 12 seconds left to play cut Denver’s lead to 20-18, the Patriots saw their chances of continuing their season ricochet off of Aqib Talib as he broke off a pass to Julian Edelman. Bradley Roby corralled the ball and the Patriots’ ensuing onside kick was recovered by Denver to seal the victory.

The Patriots were going for two because Stephen Gostkowski missed an extra point in the first half. It was the first time since his rookie season and just the second time in his entire career that he missed a PAT. That miss receded in the back of the mind as the Broncos defense battered the Patriots over the course of the afternoon, but returned after a couple of attempts to save the season by Gronkowski.

Facing a fourth-and-10 from the 50, Tom Brady hit Gronkowski for 40 yards and then hit him on another fourth down a few snaps later for the touchdown. Gronkowski finished the day with eight catches for 144 yards, which made him the most effective New England offensive player by miles.

The Patriots offensive line was barely a speed bump to the Broncos pass rush, which had four sacks and many more hits and hurries of Brady. That pressure seemed to leave Brady feeling as uncomfortable as he’s ever looked in the Patriots offense and the Broncos came up especially big on third and fourth downs. The two Gronk conversions were preceded by a pair of fourth down failures by the Patriots inside Broncos territory during the fourth quarter (when they had all three timeouts as well) and the Pats were just 2-of-15 on third down all day.

Denver was 6-of-17 in those situations, but came up with three conversions on one fourth quarter drive that ended with a Brandon McManus field goal. It was the only time Denver would get on the board in the second half, but those points were big ones given the way things played out over the rest of the afternoon.

While things sputtered in the final 30 minutes, the Broncos offense got the game rolling the right way with an 83-yard touchdown drive to open the game. Peyton Manning was 4-of-6 for 60 yards on that drive and later threw a 12-yard touchdown to Owen Daniels after a Tom Brady interception.

It wasn’t a vintage Manning passing extravaganza by any means, but it gave the defense the lead it needed to tee off on a New England offense and that was plenty on Sunday. Von Miller had 2.5 sacks and an interception, Derek Wolfe had a sack, DeMarcus Ware was impossible to block off the edge, Chris Harris stuffed Julian Edelman for a loss on fourth down and so on and so on and so on it went for the Denver defense.

Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips’ game plan was excellent, his players executed it with few errors and they came up with one last big play with overtime looming in the background. Whatever other redemption stories are told over the next two weeks about why the Broncos are going to the Super Bowl, it’s their defense that deserves the spotlight right now.

218 responses to “Broncos hold on in final seconds to advance to Super Bowl 50

  1. Congratulations to the Broncos. The defense is the reason they are going to Super Bowl 50. New England haters should just be quiet. Unless you are a Broncos fan, shaddap. The only issue I have with the game today was at least 3 “intentional grounding” penalties that should have been called on Brady. The refs let a lot of stuff go uncalled but any other QB in the league would be flagged. Brady is arguably the best QB of this or any generation but intentional grounding is intentional grounding.

  2. If it wasn’t for Peyton and Eli Manning, Tom Brady may have 9 Super Bowl wins.

    Tom Brady’s Playoff Losses to the Manning Brothers:

    2006 AFC Championship (Peyton)
    2007 Super Bowl (Eli)
    2011 Super Bowl (Eli)
    2013 AFC Championship (Peyton)
    2015 AFC Championship (Peyton)

  3. While that was a good defensive battle, it really came off as a pretty boring game. It’s too bad that the (probable) last matchup between Brady and Manning was an offensive snooze fest.

  4. GREAT DEFENSE Denver!!

    Anyone but Brady….

    P-Money its time to shine and two weeks to heal!!

  5. Broncos front 7 won that game. Cannon was embarrassingly bad. Manning survives to play another game. Patriots made it close, but that choice to go for the touchdown rather than the FG cost them. Patriots defense showed up, unfortunately the offensive line was giving no time for Brady.

  6. Lord Manning Owns Brady

    3 – 1 in AFC Title Games vs. Brady, the biggest stage possible for these two teams.

    18 walks on water, and is the greatest of all time.

    Brady top 25 QB ever, but a real Gruden Grinder.

  7. Patriots fans keep your heads up, you know you have a class act organization that is well run and managed. You will be competing for Super Bowls for the next 3-4 years easily.

    Signed a Broncos fan.

  8. That was one of the most satisfying games I’ve ever watched. The NFC is going to field a serious contender again this year but I’m pulling for Manning to win it all and retire in a blaze of glory.

    Of all of the ways the Pats could lose, Gostkowski misses a PAT and Brady throws 2 interceptions. Crazy.

  9. Spectacular game. Thought it was over about 5 times before it was actually over. Great game by both teams.

    The Broncos defense is one of the best I’ve ever seen.

  10. Bonus for Peyton Manning winning AFC…$2 million

    Cost of a 30 second Super Bowl ad…$5 million

    Keeping the Patriots out of the Super Bowl, and putting a sock in their entitled fans mouths…PRICELESS

  11. Broncos D dominated today. Pats fans will claim the Refs and NFL cheated them. Gonna be a long flight home for Brady and Co.

  12. Yes! Now we have a taint-free Super Bowl to look forward to. It’s a great day for the entire world!

    Time for Tammy to retire and write his “tell-all” book. Buh bye now.

  13. Congratulations Denver! Neither D deserved to lose that game but one of them had to and the Broncos defense was stifling. They deserved the win. Without question Denver’s D made them the better team out there today by just enough. Great defensive battle and really pleased the players not the zebras decided it.

  14. Was wondering since the playoff “head to head” wins were all that counted for pats earlier in Brady’s career does that rule still count now since Manning is 3-2 against Brady, and 3-1 overall in championship games?…Crickets

  15. Good game Broncos. All the talk will be about Peyton and his storybook ending, but it was all about the defense today.

  16. From the very beginning of this game there as no CLEAR path to victory by the Patriots coaching staff.

    Horrible coaching as follows:

    1.) Choosing to receive on opening kickoff

    2.) Plain Vanilla offensive scheme

    3.) Brady 100% SCARED

    4.) Failed to make adjustments at half time

    5.) BB deciding to go for it on 4th down instead of kicking a field goal to make it 20 – 15

    6.) BB, again, going for it on 4th down instead of kicking a field goal to make it 20 18

    7.) Had the Pats kicked two field goals for a 20 – 18 score, they then had enough time to try an onside kick. If recovered they could of won the game with a field goal = MOST Likely SMART DECISION to stay in the game.

    8.) Entire responsibility for loss belongs to Coahing Staff and Brady throwing those picks.

    9.) Congratulations to the Broncos Defense that played with DETERMINATION.

  17. All the Pats had to do is win one of their last two against non-playoff teams to get homefield and they could not do it. AND, we beat them a few weeks ago with our backup QB. We had this from the getgo.

  18. What a game by the Broncos defense. What an effort by NE defense to help team be in position to tie it at the end.
    And finally props to Dan Campbell whose side beat NE in week-17 to ensure that this happens is in Denver, not NE.

  19. ..
    The Patriots couldn’t run it. The Patriots couldn’t pass it. The Patriots list the turnover battle. Only their defense kept them in the game.

  20. Patriots are still the AFC East Champs! Problem is that’s not saying much to be the best in that division.

  21. Game balls to the Broncos’ D and Wade Phillips.
    Haven’t seen Brady get harassed like that since those Super Bowls losses to the Giants.

  22. I find it completely appropriate that the team that has LOST the most Super Bowls in the history of the game will be representing the AFC in SB 50. Chalk another one up for the Broncos, loss #6 coming up in 2 weeks…

  23. Brady can’t play in the winter unless if he cheats. The curse of the deflated ball, started today. I’m so excited to watch it unfold over the years.

  24. For all his playoff faults, Manning is 3-1 vs Brady in AFC title games, from the stat I saw. Take it for what it’s worth.

  25. Instant classic. Patriots were frustrated all game, Brady choked in the biggest moment. The 2015 Broncos defense is legendary, up there with the 1985 Bears if they win in Santa Clara.

  26. Drink your gatoraid this week, Ward and Stewart. The defense completely changes, especially with both of them out. They can’t rely on the insane pressure

  27. Malik Jackson backed up his talk.
    Manning did what he needed to do.
    Brady was exposed.

    Good win for the Broncos. The Patriots dynasty is over.

  28. I have never seen a team beg for a flag on every offensive play that was not a completion. Guess who ?

  29. Hats off to Broncos…bugger. These sputtering NE games drive me nuts. Always something…O line needs repair.
    Glad the team is relatively healthy into offseason…let this one burn….Next year!

  30. Congrats Bronco fan, thanks for shutting up arrogant Patriot fan! That D was amazing! Looking forward to what should be a great 2016.

    Signed Chief fan.

  31. This Patriot fan’s hat is off to the Broncos. Good game. Down to the wire. I am disappointed, but not ashamed. Hope the next game is half as good as this one was.

  32. After the last Broncos win. I thought they would need more than the 20 points they scored. But they did it anyway!

    Now I won’t mind seeing smiley face post pertaining to the pats.

  33. Where are all these Patriot fans that said Denver was going to get killed? This was my Super Bowl game!!! That being said, mad respect for the Patriots team. Great game!!! Go BRONCOS !!

  34. What a game but if I’m a Pats fan, hard to swallow.

    Make the PAT, make the FG or kick the FG in Q4 AND you win that game. 3 chances and blew each.

    Tough way to go down.

    Go Bills.

  35. Never have really liked Tom Brady and still don’t. Don’t like the dishonesty or disingenuous nature he has exhibited. However I do respect the competitive spirit, one of the same reasons I loved Joe Montana. Congrats Denver Broncos and good luck.

  36. Better team won…….good luck Denver. Win one for Manning. To the victors go the spoils. No need to be classless, it just reflects badly on you.

  37. I’m just waiting for Patriot fans to start complaining about various injustices throughout the game even though they’ll be whining about the same things that they’ve gotten away with for years

    So I have to ask you New Englanders how does that medicine taste?

    Denver, CO

  38. Let us not forget the innocent victim who was killed by new england patriots player aaron hernandez.

    Low character, enabling franchise.

  39. Congratulations to the Broncos for the win. Patriot offensive line played a poor game, completely outplayed by Denver’s D. Patriots defense played their hearts out, and should hold their heads up high! Good luck in the Super Bowl!

  40. Congrats to Denver
    The Denver D is for real.
    In my heart of heart I do not believe the result would be different if the game was played in Foxborough .
    Having lived through the Russell/Chamberlin ,
    the Bobby Orr /Ken Dryden ,the Bird/Magic era and all those SOX/Yankees games I believe Brady /Manning is done .
    I know TB 12 said he want to play for ever but this last 12 months has got to have taken a toll.
    If you think about it Brady got his fourth with the same team that draft him .He did not have to put him self out there as a hired gun.

  41. The Manning brothers have been krpyptonite against TB with a collective 6-1 playoff wins in either the AFC Championship or the SB!

    Go get your SB Denver!

    A Seattle fan!

  42. I wonder if Belichick is going to get involved in rule changes this off-season. Thanks to his idea to move the extra point back, he’s got a little longer off-season to think about it.

  43. Down goes Frasier! Down goes Frasier!

    Congrats Bronco fans, when the world didn’t think you had a chance the defense stepped up big time….That Tom Brady is tough to kill but you got him……wow I am pleasantly surprised by those results…..

  44. Great game Bronocs fans. Good luck in the SB !

    Your defense was tremendous and they played their rear ends off.

  45. Cheaters never prosper. Footballs must have been inflated at proper weight. Patriot fans have been pointing fingers making excuses all season. Next time we will here from Pats fans is when they are on the clock with their first round draft pick. Wait a minute , they don’t have a first round draft pick. That O-line won’t get any help in the first round!!!

  46. denver is gonna get smacked around by carolina in sb 50. btw carolina is pretty much done with arizona now. palmer looks awful so i say carolina 31 denver 17 in sb 50

  47. No excuses the Broncos defense took over the game today and Belichick’s decision making combined with Brady turnovers doomed the Pats we will be back next year and hopefully with a better offensive line to combat the Denver Broncos.

  48. Broncos shut the pie holes of the two most obnoxious fan bases in football. Congrats on whipping both the Steelers and Patriots, two teams that deserve to lose.

  49. Big Pats fan. Congrats to the Broncos — you earned it and that defense today was Super Bowl worthy. Thanks to the Pats for another great year — looking forward to you getting back at it next fall.

  50. Pats fan here. No excuses. Congratulations to Denver. Their defensive front won this game and they deserve it. Brady deserves a Purple Heart for that effort. Denver’s front was relentless on every snap. That being said, Brady’s first interception to Miller was a pathetic throw and I think rely changed the complexion of the game. I also thought it was pathetic for Peyton to not even mention Brock Osweiler in the post-game and recognize what that player did for his team during Peyton’s absence. I’ll never be a fan of his.

  51. The Denver D won this game. Manning looked lost out there most of the game. He moves like he is made of wood but that was a good run.

  52. Not the prettiest game ever by Manning, but what an awesome team win!!!! #happybradylost

    Love the story of Manning going out on a win, but love even better Cam winning cause you never know if he will have the chance to get there again.

  53. Great game…..
    Would have been funny to see Godell squirm in Santa Clara had the Pats advanced but wasn’t in the cards.
    SB50 festivities will be fun and I am sure Roger’s invitation to Brady to be there and partake still will be honored.

  54. As a long time Patriots fan, I’d like to congratulate the Broncos on their win. You followed the same game plan that the Ravens, Jets and Giants used to beat my Pats in these types of big games. Pressure Brady early with some hits, and it gets in his head and his accuracy is gone. Even when he has time his accuracy is gone. Both interceptions were horrible, and his deep throws, other than to Gronk who catches practically everything, was horrible.

  55. I’m from NY and thought the Yankees were the most hated team in all of sports. Man was I wrong, it’s like every state not in New England is celebrating.

    And well, being from NY, I have a strong dislike of all things Boston anyway 🙂

  56. The 2 biggest whiners in the league get to sit home in two weeks and nobody has to watch them do anything! The thought that neither Brady nor Rodgers gets to play is wonderful!

  57. Another game decided in the final seconds like a made for TV movie. I bet the advertisers and the league loved that. That was a great script.

  58. Congrats to the Broncos and their fans. Pats defense played well but Denver’s was stifling.

    I’m still proud of the Patriots, they fought til the end but Denver deserved to win this game.

    Good luck in the SB Broncos

  59. Attention Patriots fans: the Tom Brady Deflategate Revenge Tour has been canceled. Ticket refunds may be picked up at the NFL offices in New York City.

    Refunds will be handed out personally by Commissioner Goodell.

    We apologize in advance for any inconvenience.

  60. Congratulations to the Broncos. The defense is the reason they are going to Super Bowl 50. New England haters should just be quiet. Unless you are a Broncos fan, shaddap.

    It is a fair bet that there are FAR more Hateriots fans than pats fans.

  61. Donks will get blown off the field again in the Super Bowl just like two years ago.. this team is a pretender

  62. So simple that Belicheat outsmarted himself. Kick the FG on three 4th downs, go home the winner 21-20.

    Good Point. They sure were hitting hard out there.

  63. New Papa Johns Special:

    FourAsteriskShadyBeliDUMBfest pizza:

    Extra chowderhead tears, extra cheese, and extra WHINE.

    Yum yum sooooo goood.

  64. Denver Fans owe the Miami Dolphins Fans some credit… In the final week of the Season Miami Defense pummelled Brady and took away Home Field. Without the Refs this game was not even close. I wonder if they threw out the Intentional Grounding rules for the day?

  65. Pats have to kick FG with 7+ mins left. With their horrific line, 2 pt conversion and converting 4th and 1 1/2 no easy task. Bad decision by Belichick.

  66. canetic says:
    Jan 24, 2016 6:53 PM

    I saw a fading NFL qb today and it wasn’t Peyton Manning.


    I thought Tom Brady played fine he just didn’t have a lot of time to throw the ball. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him so beaten up in a game before and that includes both Super Bowl losses to the Giants.

  67. Bill Belichick made the Right decisions to Go for It even though it did not work out for them. I was rooting for Both Quarterbacks but Especially Manning. I Respect a Coach with BALLS! One of the 4th down plays the Pats receiver was interfeered with but no call….. The Better Team Won though. Broncos Win Super Bowl 50 Easily!!!

  68. I think the rest of the league saw the way to beat the Pats is pressure Brady but realistically if Bellecheat kicks those FG’s they would have had a chance to win at the end even though the Pats played terrible on Offense .

  69. kcchefs58 says:
    Jan 24, 2016 6:58 PM
    Denver will drop off after this season. It’s gonna be fun to watch.
    God knows you won’t be watching KC do anything meaningful so get your fun where you can.

  70. Great game. Congrats Tom, Gronk, Julius, Danny and hats off to Matt and his entire defense. Funny how Bill could have won it the same way Pete Carroll could have beaten the Purple Panthers, by not eschewing the 3 pointer, however I give BB credit for having the guts to show trust in the team and go for the TD. You boys played your hearts out for the full 60. Mad props to the entire Pats org for an outstanding season while dealing with an insane amount of injuries.

    Denver, great game plan and execution. You guys were the tougher team today. Solid game Peyton, maybe your best ever under pressure. Now make us proud. Go win the big one for your fans and the rest of the AFC.

  71. Nothing i like more then see fans from other teams say Denver is gonna get blown out in the SB. That means my team is in the SB and that makes you sick and me laugh. But in all seriousness I have to again say gr8 game to NE. It’s sad to say that this is Peytons last go round and will prob only get to watch the best ever Brady for another 1-2 years. I just hope that Bill and Brady don’t go out together cause i wanna see if it’s the system or the QB for that legendary duo. Just glad it was in Denver again. Heads high Pats fans cause no1 can take away the legendary status of BB, TB and the entire organization. Gr8 respect and envy for that entire organization

  72. lennylyles says:
    Cheaters never prosper. Footballs must have been inflated at proper weight. Patriot fans have been pointing fingers making excuses all season. Next time we will here from Pats fans is when they are on the clock with their first round draft pick. Wait a minute , they don’t have a first round draft pick. That O-line won’t get any help in the first round!!!
    That ironic, I’ve seen quite a few Pats fans give credit to the Broncos on this post. Yet it’s fools like you that show their true IQ with the drivel that comes from your brain.

  73. Congratulations Broncos! And to Tom Brady, you are one of the toughest SOB’s I’ve seen in a long time. Can’t wait to see the Denver D tee off on the NFC rep.

  74. Glad Manning Won as to Shut Up his detractors! I also like Brady and wanted the winner to Take Super Bowl 50 Especially if it is the Overrated Panthers with that Loudmouth Overrated Punk I Centered Pig Newton!!!

    There Will be More Games against each other and they each will Win more Super Bowls. Manning Comes back for a Repeat and then a Threepeat Followed by Brady’s 5th Super Bowl Win!

  75. I don’t understand. Brady is the GOAT. Peyton is old and going to be one and done. There must be some mistake. The stats are reversed right? Brady had the 2 TD and Manning had the 2 int right? I’ve been reading articles and blogs all week and I never read anything like what happened. Weird.

  76. First off, great defense, and great game. I was certain the NFC would win ‘ole 50 this year as I didn’t think the Broncos had the “oomph” and the Pats have been fading since the last matchup with Denver, but that pass-rush is nuts. Congrats Demarcus Ware, you definetly deserved the trip.

    Not to feed the trolls here, but I honestly have to ask, 150+ comments in, and I have yet to see one from infamous lol@patshaters. Your pariah was battered and bruised today, but in all honesty, he didn’t live up to his “crybaby” status today, while disappointing, it actually allowed to sympathize with the guy, it was definetly a gutcheck game. Thank you, and good luck except against buffalo, not like you need it.

  77. If Denver had that Defense 2 years ago I’m not sure Seattle beats them in SB.

    That Denver DL was relentless!!!

    Congrats Denver!
    Seattle fan

  78. No excuses.

    The Patriotd did not play well at all today and Denver was well prepared. Can’t win em all. We will be back. Good luck to Denver and Carolina.

    Signed a loyal Pats fan.

  79. Props to the Broncos D.
    Kudos for Brady for almost pulling out an insane undermanned comeback. Beast.
    Good luck in the SB Broncos fans. The Pats will be in the AFC championship again next year. And the year after that. Maybe to win, maybe not, but will be contending for the next few.
    I hope Peyton can get that 2nd ring, but I think it is Carolina’s year.

  80. Really a great game. NEs O line was abused by Denver, but Denver’s offense was not good. Denver is fortunate that NE didn’t kick a field goal the two times they had the option. Given that NE was in scoring position so many times in the second half while Denver was only able to score 3 points during that time makes it quite evident that Denver is not just going to lose SB 50, but will probably get blown out again

  81. Congrats to the Broncos. There’s no way to spin it, the Broncos were simply better in all aspects of the game today and deserved to win.

    And while I would have loved to see Goodell forced to hand the Lombardi trophy to Brady, I’ll take solace in the fact that I’ve had a half-decade of uninterrupted 18+ game seasons as a Patriots fan.

    Good luck in Santa Clara Denver. If Manning wins it all, he should announce his retirement on the podium with trophy in hand and go out with style.

  82. Last year I thought Luck and Flacco were going to take over the AFC from Manning and Brady. Wrong last year and wrong this year. The two old guys still have some left, but the window is closing.

    NFC belongs to Cam and Russell. The torch gets passed

    Congrats to Denver on a hard fought win, great defense and home field atmosphere

    Congrats to Pats as well for making it this far with all the BS from Deflatgate nonsense

    Good to see some classy comments from real fans of the game sprinkled in with all the dumb posts from hater nation

  83. Lot of bad throws out of Tommy’s hand today… he couldn’t seem to get a good grip on the ball. Hmmmmmm….

    Thank you, Broncos! You have earned America’s eternal gratitude for vanquishing the cheaters!

  84. Broncos fan here. Props to the Pats who played a tough and clean game today, and have a long trip home after what must be a bitter loss.

    We have no illusions about facing the Panthers in SB50. Just glad we won today, in a hard-fought game. No BS – just tough football. Coulda gone either way.

  85. If Manning had realized his limitations earlier in the year he would have not had all those interceptions. 17 interceptions in 9 games and 0 in last 2 and 1/2. He is a Super Bowl game manager.

  86. Nice win Denver and good luck against Panthers in SB.
    Nice to see lots of good sportsmanship from Pats fans on this thread.

    Kind of of was expecting the TeeHeeLol😊 guy to have an angle on all these articles but he is a no show thank God.

    Got to admit I would have loved to have seen the Goodell / Kraft / BB/ Brady interaction at Super Bowl 50 week had Pats won this game.

  87. Great defensive showcase by both Denver and New England. QB play on both sides was fair but nothing spectacular. Manning still has the knowledge of the game and managing it, but the arm is on it’s last “legs”. Brady never could settle in and get comfortable due to the outstanding pass rush and coverage by Denver’s D. All in all a satisfying if not spectacular AFC Championship game. Now to see who Denver faces in the Super Bowl, at this point in the 4th Quarter of the Panthers/Cardinals Game it looks like it is going to be the Carolina Panthers. If so Denver’s defense is going to have its hands full. Cam Newton and Company are scary good. Should be fun!

  88. tommikula says:
    Jan 24, 2016 8:44 PM

    This Super Bowl is gonna suck big time.


    No Seattle and no New England it’s going to be an awesome Super Bowl. I can’t wait!!!

  89. Twelve yard run by the Sheriff! Our house was electric. Where is tee hee and all the other Pats fans with their gibberish from the last week? Broncos going to the Super Bowl and Olsen/Funchess/Ginn present less issue than weapons from previous weeks. Cam is nervous; go Broncos!

  90. I look so forward to that moment when Goodell has to hand the Lombardi trophy to Kraft, Belichick, and Brady so they can get sweet revenge and stick it to him.

    Oh wait! That’s not going to happen.

    Sorry I just had to get that shot in but I thought both Brady and Belichick showed a lot of class in the way they congratulated Manning at the end of the game. Hard fought game that could have gone either way.

  91. Have to say it again, what a great game! Call me a homer or whatever, tonight’s game is what playoff football should be. Big thanks to the Jets/Dolphins for what you made possible in the Mile High City. We will never forget it!~ Go Broncos!

  92. The Broncos exposed for the viewing audience what the rest of NFL coaches already know: Brady is nothing without Gronk. Take away his threat and Brady has no one to throw to.

  93. Patriots fans can dish it out but they cannot take it. Where’s that “you hate us because you ain’t us” crap now? A Patriots fan took umbrage when I said Brady sucks against the Broncos but it’s absolutely true, especially this season. Brady is 2-7 at Denver all-time and 6-9 against the Broncos in all games. The Broncos are on to the Super Bowl.

  94. The home teams wins 75% of the time in title games.

    The Patriots put themselves in a bad position by not locking up home field, and by chasing points today. They took chances Denver did not take because they were more confident in their ability to overcome any mistakes, and perhaps feeling the pressure to perform that road teams often do. Denver knew their limitations, and that’s sometimes a good thing, especially with a good defense playing well.

    Having aid that, I don’t think the Panthers will do the same. I’m having trouble not seeing this game play out the same as so many other Bronco and Peyton Super Bowls…..a loss…..a big one. I know people will say that’s good, keep under estimating them, but really, they are not a complete team. They have a chance, because of the inexperience of the Panthers, and their second half struggles, but their d-line will more than likely maul Manning, and he may not be able to finish the game. That might end up as a blessing in disguise for Denver, as they are between a rock and a hard place if Manning plays poorly. After all this fanfare, I doubt Kubiak will want to bench Manning in the Super Bowl. However if he is beaten into ineffectiveness, he could make the change. If they lose, it will be 2-6 in Super Bowls, with the two wins coming courtesy of salary cap violations that allowed them to keep more Pro Bowl level players on their roster than all the other teams could, creating an unfair competitive advantage. But whatever.

  95. Please Give the Cheating and Deflating Allegations a Rest Trolls! You are just Jealous of Brady’s Successes and the fact that your quarterback is not nearly as good! That goes for our QB too!
    Brady and Manning are Both All Time Greats and Totally Innocent!!! Do Your Own Research People!!!

    Minnesota Vikings Fan!

  96. Congratulations to the Broncos on advancing to the Super Bowl.

    Hope you keep it in the AFC.

    Both defenses played great but, unfortunately from my point of view :), the Pats D only showed up in the second half!!!

    Brilliant pass rushing the whole game by the Broncos and that was the key to the game.

  97. Im not happy with the outcome of this game, but I can honestly say that this is the first game in ten years that the officials didn’t decide it.

    Dear NFL
    please show this game over and over to all your zebras. This is what we want! When our team looses, we want to blame them and not YOU!

  98. It’s funny. When the stories came out about the Broncos LB’s complaining about Brady and Gronk (and actually pretty complimentary in the case of Brady, and exaggeratedly IMO for Gronk), ALL the Pats fans were in here saying “here goes Denver making excuses before the game” and such. And it was an absolute thumbs up fest. Guess Pats fans are all still drowning their sorrows.

  99. How many intentional grounding plays by the Patriots that weren’t called did you see? I saw two or sure and possibly a third one. Refs were being very forgiving.

  100. @jksee, all the passes were beyond the line of scrimmage with a receiver in the area. What groundings did you see? In fact, the linesman and umpire specifically POINTED out the receiver that was about 1-2 yards from were the pass landed. It wasn’t like either pass was no where in the neighborhood.

  101. The Broncos team I saw yesterday will be absolutely dismantled by Carolina. Say what you will but Denver barely squeaked out a win yesterday. That isn’t going to cut it against Carolina.

  102. In the Nation Wide jingle:


    For the haters. New England was favored by 3.5 over Denver, and we all know how that turned out. Cam is good, but he won’t know what to do with the Denver front 7, and the Carolina WR corp will not run wild over the Broncos DBs.

    This game will be a lot closer than you haters think.

  103. jimhart1964 says:
    Jan 25, 2016 10:50 AM

    The Broncos team I saw yesterday will be absolutely dismantled by Carolina. Say what you will but Denver barely squeaked out a win yesterday. That isn’t going to cut it against Carolina.

    I, and many others, thought this exact thing about the Broncos chances against the Pats seeing their performance against the Steelers. The defense will at least make a game out of it, although Cam poses a much different challenge from Brady.

  104. What’s all the “Game of the Year” or “Game of the Decade” talk? The Broncos led the entire game. Doesn’t it have to have some lead changes before it qualifies for “game of the year” status?

    BTW great game by Wade & the Denver D. Jack the WRs at the line and put heat on Brady. That’s how you beat the Pats.

  105. wte1 says: Dec 15, 2015 6:21 PM
    I’m not worried. The road to Levi’s Stadium runs through Foxboro.

    Didn’t happen. Thanks to the Miami Dolphins!!!

  106. Lot of bad throws out of Tommy’s hand today… he couldn’t seem to get a good grip on the ball. Hmmmmmm….
    Seemed to do fine throwing for 4,700 yards and making it to his unprecedented 10th conference championship as the defending Super Bowl MVP.

  107. Tom Brady’s Playoff Losses to the Manning Brothers:

    2006 AFC Championship (Peyton)
    2007 Super Bowl (Eli)
    2011 Super Bowl (Eli)
    2013 AFC Championship (Peyton)
    2015 AFC Championship (Peyton)
    Tom Brady rings: 4
    Peyton: 1
    Eli: 2

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