Today is Sunday, July 23, 2017

Some closing thoughts on Super Bowl XLVIII

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Things I liked:
I liked the way Seattle dominated Denver in every phase of the game. Going in with the best defense in the NFL this season, the Seahawks came in confident, playing the role of the underdog. While everyone in the media was fawning over the season Peyton Manning had, I imagine Seattle Coach Pete Carroll didn’t hesitate to frequently remind his players that Manning was the Super Bowl and they were just lambs being led to slaughter.
I liked the way second year NFL quarterback Russell Wilson handled winning the game. He gave credit where credit was due. He played with a poise that few players in that position would do with just two seasons in the league. It wasn’t like he was a shoo-in to come in and play at the level he has played in. He was too short, too this, too that. Well, he threw for two touchdowns, had no interceptions.
I liked the way Manning handled himself in his postgame interviews. He hates to lose, but was honest in his evaluation of the game, giving credit to Seattle’s defense and said they were the best team on the field Sunday.
I liked Renee Fleming, the first opera star to sing the National Anthem at a Super Bowl. She didn’t try to make it a different song than the one Francis Scott Key wrote.
I liked the halftime show with Bruno Mars. He is a showman who can entertain without getting on your nerves. The Red Chili Peppers didn’t get rave reviews from what I read, but I missed them so I won’t comment on them.
I liked the officiating. There were no major blunders, but then the game got out of hand so quickly and decisively, one missed call was not going to determine the outcome.

Things I did not care for:
I thought the ads, which cost $4 million for a 30-second spot, were the worst I can remember. Having covered some 25 Super Bowls for the Nashville Banner and Tennessean, halftime was an opportunity to start writing, especially on deadline games. Watching the ads wasn’t on our radar. The one that has stuck with me through the years was the Coke ad that featured Pittsburgh Steelers lineman Mean Joe Green and a little kid who gave his Coke to a limping Green. Touching. Nothing touched me Sunday night.
I didn’t like all the attention the media paid to Manning before, during and after the game. Peyton is a media favorite, but I didn’t think Seattle got its just due until they were beating the Broncos so bad they would have been arrested for assault if it had happened outside MetLife Stadium.
I didn’t like that the game, not unlike a lot of past Super Bowls, was not compelling. One-sided Super Bowls are not uncommon. When the game was played the next week after the conference championships, it seems they were always more competitive. Two weeks in between is a long time for players to maintain their edge. Give them two weeks off and often one team fails to show up.
I don’t like Media Day. It brings out the worst in people posing as journalists who are there to draw attention to themselves in hopes of going viral on YouTube. It’s getting old and they need to change the format.
Contact Wilson Post Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at

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"My Bid" by Joe Biddle
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