The Official DYC Super Bowl Preview
This Sunday, it all comes to an end. Our true national pastime bids adieu once more, as the Broncos and Seahawks lock up in a match-up pitting not only the top teams in each conference, but also the NFL’s best offense versus the NFL’s best defense. We’re going to go over what happens when each team has the ball, some friends of the blog are gonna make some picks, and we’re going to point out some of the best ways to lose money causally this weekend. Most importantly, we’re not going to cut you off cold turkey from football for safety reasons.
First things first, prop bets. Everyone loves them, they’re a great way to integrate casual fans into the game, and if you’re paying close attention, there’s money to be made. We covered prop bets at length on the not-yet-award winning DudeYouPodcast, but there’s one we DIDN’T cover that I win money on every year.
National anthem over/under.
This year, the anthem will be brought to you by Renee Fleming, an opera singer who brings a full lyric soprano to the table (according to Wikipedia). I was embarrassed not to know who she was until I read that she was an opera singer, so I’ve got that going for me. Vegas has the length of her anthem set at 2:25, and the record right now is 2:36 seconds held by Alicia Keys, and that was done just last year. Couple the fact that we’ve got a classically trained singer who may not be used to braving the elements, and I think the under is the bet here.
(Yes, I’m aware that I have grossly over-thought this, and yes this might be a sign of a debilitating gambling addiction. What are you, my mother?)
Now, on to the game itself!
Seattle @ Denver
When We Last Saw Seattle: Richard Sherman was Richard Shermaning, Beast Mode was Beast Moding, and Pete Carroll was becoming the first coach to lead a team to a BCS title game and a Super Bowl, as I have been reminded by my USC fan friends over the past two weeks. All USC vacated title jokes aside, it’s amazing that just four years ago, the NFC West was bar none the worst division in professional football. This year, we saw two from the division lead the entire conference wire to wire, and an 11-win Arizona team miss the playoffs, so it’s safe to say that they survived the best division in football to get here.
This is a team built on their defense and their running game, and with the apparent neutral conditions Sunday, it looks like this will be a good time for them to shine. Look for the Seahawks to start early with a heavy dose of Marshawn Lynch, as the Broncos haven’t had to deal with a true power running attack all year. The reason they’ve been able to avoid that kind of attack has been they score so many points so fast, that teams are forced to throw to keep up. Won’t be the case this Sunday, as this record breaking Seattle secondary will present a unique challenge for the Denver offense.
The biggest variable for Seattle is just how much Wilson is going to be asked to do under center. He’s stepped up big in every situation asked for thus far, and while his numbers haven’t been gaudy, I don’t think he stops stepping up now. Win, lose or draw, Seattle will be improving their receiving corps in the offseason, but is this the game where their biggest weakness finally bites them? Land Baron Carroll says no.
When We Last Saw Denver: Peyton Manning and company were juuuuuuust finishing up laying waste to the entire NFL in general, and the offensive record book in particular. Passing yards? Got it. Passing touchdowns? Been had it. Most points in a season? Something something, Danger Zone. Bottom line, this is the most prolific offensive season in the history of the Shield, and I’m not sure we see anyone top it going forward. Not to be lost amidst the passing stats, the running game from Denver was the 15th in the league this year.
Success on ground may have come from the offense softening defenses with the passing attack, but that same passing attack accounts for their success against the run. As I already mentioned, teams were often forced to abandon the run early to accommodate keeping up with the Peyton Mannings, and left this defense as 8th against the run. Seattle is not one to abandon the run, and will look to extend their possessions with the ball, in an effort to keep this offense off the field. The major question becomes lies on the match up between the passing game and the Legion of Boom. Can Kam Chancellor and company keep the passing game under wraps? Bionic neck cyborg quarterback Peyton Manning says no.
THE PICK: I was raised on defensive football. I like a defense that hits and makes plays, and that talks the talk and consistently backs it up. But, I’m also human. I watched this Broncos season like everyone else who helped bet this line up, and watching their efficiency and dominance this year makes it hard to think that anyone can stop them, even the Seahawks. Before we get to my pick, I asked some people around the blog and former guests of the pod their opinions:
Rodimus Prime (host of the award-winning podcast The Black Guy Who Tips, better at podcasting than us, @rodimusprime) – “This is tough but give me the Seahawks because Russel Wilson is QB cyborg and that defense is nasty. So I’m going with Seahawks plus the 3!”
Chad Floyd (writer at DudeYouCrazy.net, former intern, @Chad_Floyd) – “The Beast Mode rushing attack against a decidedly average defense? Seahawks +3. Seahawks moneyline. Seahawks with points negotiable.”
Michael Felder (lead college football writer at Bleacher Report, drinker of beer(s), @InTheBleachers) – “As the guy who started “All Russell Wilson Everything” on that Thursday night against UNLV in his debut game at Wisconsin, I feel like I need him to finish the drill. The kid balls. Oh and Seattle’s DBs play ball like a real G should. Get down or lay down Broncos.”
Andrew Hall (site runner at DudeYouCrazy.net, mid-podcast vanisher, @DudeYouCrazy) – “I’ve got Seahawks winning outright. The defense and the weather will rattle the Broncos. Beast Mode will be enabled. Wilson will make just enough throws.”
Flying in the face of convention and public opinion, I have to agree with most of these breakdowns: I think the games stays close, and a close game goes to the team that can run and play defense.
Seahawks (+3) over Broncos
If you’ve learned one thing this season gambling with me, it’s that the public is usually wrong. And if I learned anything, well…
Get down or lay down, indeed. Enjoy the game everyone.
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