It was the same story all over again for the Denver Broncos on Sunday. No team had beaten Denver all year; yet they finished the 2013 season with three regular season losses and were on the wrong end of a 43-8 blowout against the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl 48.
How did it come to this? How was the “unstoppable force” that is the Broncos’ offense contained?
The answer is simple: They beat themselves.
From the opening snap, through the final drive; it was their own mistakes that proved to be Denver’s downfall.
“When you turn the ball over you are playing right into their hands,” said Broncos’ Executive Vice President of Football Operations John Elway. “The last time I saw the stat, 21 points off of turnovers is what we gave up. We just can’t make the mistakes that we made.”
The typically sure-handed Peyton Manning threw two interceptions. The first snap of the game sailed over the 37-year-old quarterback’s head and into the end zone for a safety.
“At the end of the day, all the way around, we didn’t play the best we can,” said Denver running back Knowshon Moreno. “We weren’t able to stay on the field and put those consistent drives together. Not only that, but we put the ball on the ground with turnovers. You do those things and you’re gonna lose games.”
The Broncos did not force Seattle into any turnovers, finishing the game with a turnover differential of minus-4. In fact, Denver lost the turnover battle in each of their three regular season losses as well.
Just like Demaryius Thomas after the football was punched out of his arms by Byron Maxwell in the third quarter; the Broncos will now head back to the Mile High City empty-handed.