NFC and AFC Championship Game Recaps

Denver Broncos defensive end Derek Wolfe (95) sacks New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady during the first half the NFL football AFC Championship game between the Denver Broncos and the New England Patriots, Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Denver Broncos defensive end Derek Wolfe (95) sacks New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady during the first half the NFL football AFC Championship game between the Denver Broncos and the New England Patriots, Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Too Much Pressure

All the attention is going to be paid to the fact that the Patriots reliable kicker Stephen Gostkowski missed an extra point in the first quarter. If he didn’t miss that extra point, then perhaps he would have made his next one late in the game when the Patriots scored a touchdown that would bring them to within a point of Denver. History cannot be re-written and yet we all assume that he would have made that extra point? The real focus should be on how Denver’s defense put constant pressure on Tom Brady from the opening drive of the game. I had New England winning before the game started, but I didn’t think it was going to be easy. The Broncos defense proved that and the result was many missed opportunities for the Patriots offense to score and were instead forced to punt. Let this be a lesson once again that if you put constant pressure on any quarterback, you have a greater chance of success. Peyton Manning didn’t have a bad day either, but Denver’s defense was the overriding reason why they will play in Super Bowl 50.

CHARLOTTE, NC - JANUARY 24: Kurt Coleman #20 of the Carolina Panthers intercepts a pass intended for John Brown #12 of the Arizona Cardinals at the end of the first half during the NFC Championship Game at Bank of America Stadium on January 24, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC – JANUARY 24: Kurt Coleman #20 of the Carolina Panthers intercepts a pass intended for John Brown #12 of the Arizona Cardinals at the end of the first half during the NFC Championship Game at Bank of America Stadium on January 24, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Leaving No Doubt

I had my doubts about the Carolina Panthers all season long. They certainly could have had more than one loss on their record this year, but that’s not the case. They are led by this years MVP in Cam Newton and he continues to show why he is one of the more dynamic quarterbacks in NFL history. Arizona’s defense really had no answer for him and I’m afraid that even if they had a healthy Tyrann Mathieu for this game, the result would have still been a loss for the Cardinals. Carson Palmer turned the ball over six times in this one and Carolina’s defense left him no chance to recover. Arizona wasn’t prepared it seemed and maybe this will be a good lesson for them going forward. The Panthers will look to bring home their first Super Bowl title in franchise history and they just might do it with the incredible way they have been playing in these playoffs.

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