Monday Takeaways: Super Bowl edition

Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY

Seattle's speed and defensive brilliance created lasting marks on the legacies of John Fox and Peyton Manning.

Speed is Everything

Seattle's defense was ridiculously fast all season. They looked even faster in the outside elements at MetLife Stadium. They attacked the brawn of the Broncos offense straight up - they didn't blitz half the side, they just relied on the simple principles of coverage and tackling. That had to be Denver's lowest yards after catch total all season.

John Foxed

That was one of the worst prepared teams in Super Bowl history, and the Broncos have many of these teams on their resume. Broncos coach John Fox came up through Pittsburgh and has had an outstanding career, but that game will stick with him for a long time. The rub routes - their key to defeating the Patriots in the conference championship - weren't effective, so Denver...continued to run them. They had no underneath space, so instead of swinging wide behind linemen, they continue to try to knife through the middle from the outside. It all failed. They had no answer. No counterpunch.

Wilson the perfect non-MVP

Much will be made about the sacrilegious decision to not give the game's MVP award to a quarterback who performed well in the Super Bowl. But it was the right decision. With all due respect to Wilson, his touchdown passes came when the game was long over, and outside of an impressive 4-for-4 clip on third downs to start the game, didn't do anything particularly newsworthy when the game was in question. The proper MVP, Malcolm Smith, iced it early with a pick six, and bolstered his claim by recovering a fumble later in the game.

Speaking of Wilson

The Seahawks may even be quietly happy Wilson did not get the award. It might have cost them another $20 million or so on what will be one of the largest contracts ever given to a quarterback. He doesn't get that new deal for another two seasons though. He will get his Proven Performance escalator for the 2015 season, so he's got that to look forward to...while Joe Flacco and Sam Bradford made gobs of money for putting up ridiculously inferior statistics. Such is the way of it, Mr. Wilson.

Defense Wins Out

If nothing else, fans of defense in the National Football League can enjoy a work of art having been the key factor in a Super Bowl championship. While we are now forced to suffer through weeks of deciding if this Seahawks defense is comparable to the all-time greats, it's certainly better than arguing Peyton Manning's place in history. Wait, we're not going to be able to avoid that, are we?

Manning's Place in History

Words can't even describe how uncomfortable he looked during that game. He wasn't in New Jersey, he was in Searing Gas Pain Land. Seattle didn't even confuse him as much as they just suffocated him. He wasn't surprised, he just didn't see anyone open. The Seahawks were able to eliminate the cerebral part of Manning game, leaving him the physically frail and limp-armed passer he is. Not trying to rag on Manning, Seattle did that to a lot of quarterbacks this year, but only Haters really expected to see Manning as ineffective as he was in that game. The era was so dominated by Manning vs. Brady headlines, but it appears both will ride into the final twilight of their awesome careers dogged by poor playoff performances.

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