Peyton Manning made what could be a victorious farewell to the NFL after the Denver Broncos beat the Carolina Panthers 24-10 to win Super Bowl 50 and give the legendary a second winner’s ring in what is believed to be his final match before retirement.
The encounter at Levi’s Stadium proved to be a memorable one for the Broncos’ defence, as DeMarcus Ware and Vonn Miller ran riot on the Panthers’ offence to register an incredible seven sacks on quarter-back Cam Newton.
Despite being named the league MVP on Saturday, Newton cracked under pressure as he was turned over four times, although Manning also struggled to put together anything of note.
Denver took the lead in the opening quarter via a Brandon McManus field-goal, but better was to come for the AFC champions after Miller sacked Newton and managed to strip the ball in the process. The loose ball was recovered by his team-mate, Malik Johnson, to score a defensive touchdown and put the Broncos out to a 10-0 lead.
Back came Carolina though, and in Newton’s only drive of note, he set-up Jonathan Stewart to leap over the pile-up and score from close range to reduce the lead.
That’s about as good as it got for the NFC champions though, as Brandon McManus added three penalties for the Broncos after Graham Gano struck an attempt of his own against the right upright. Gano would land in the fourth quarter, but that’s where the Panthers’ scoring would end.
The crucial moment came late in the fourth quarter, as Ware got his hands on Newton and forced a fumble that gave the Broncos the ball on the five-yard line. Despite going three-and-out, a holding call gave Manning another chance, and he gave the ball to running-back CJ Anderson to run it in and score the second touchdown for his side to kill off the game.
In true Manning fashion, the quarter-back landed a two-point conversion to extend the lead to 14 points as he passed to Bennie Fowler, and the celebrations had already begun as he left the field for the final time before lifting the Lombardo Trophy for the second time in his career.
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