While the Super Bowl was riveting because it was so close, it was hardly a masterpiece considering that, in the age of offense in the NFL, neither team did much on offense. Sure, the defenses deserve plenty of credit for that, but the Panthers had 4 drops, 4 turnovers, couldn’t protect the passer and had 6 pre-snap penalties.
The Broncos were pathetic on 2nd and 3rd down and at times played like they didn’t want Peyton to lose it, probably because he looked like might. Both quarterbacks seem to be getting as much grief for their conduct after the game.
Cam Newton, who was so affable and loquacious leading up to the game, was sullen, moody, difficult and petulant in the post-game press conference. Essentially, he came off like a sore loser. I was going to give him a pass and chalk it up to the disappointment of losing the biggest game of his life and how difficult it is to talk about it after such a tough loss. Then, I saw so many former NFL players criticizing him. Sure, it’s hard, but 49 other quarterbacks had to do what you were asked to do. It had to be even worse for Russell Wilson last year because he threw possibly the worst interception in Super Bowl history, and he still faced the music. That’s the deal for a professional music. You have to do the postgame interview. It’s not easy, it’s not fun but it comes with the millions you make. If 45 of your teammates can do it, so can you.
Now, to Manning and his ill-advised adlib. Twice on CBS, he mentioned he would be drinking Bud. Not only was it unsolicited, but it’s essentially against NFL rules; active players can’t endorse alcohol. Not only that, but if players get fined for wearing Beats by Dre to postgame press conferences, why is he plugging a beer afterwards. Now, he can say he isn’t being paid, but don’t be surprised if that isn’t coming, and he does have ownership stakes in Anheuser-Busch distributorships in his home state of Louisiana. Beyond that, you’re squeaky clean Peyton Manning, do you really need to be sending the message after a game you’re drinking a lot of beer.
Look, it sends the wrong message. Sure, young people are supposed to have parents as role models, not athletes, but we all know the influence famous people have. Should they? No. Do they? Yes. He should have known better. Bottom line, Cam should have said more and Peyton should have said less, then everyone would just complain about the commercials and halftime show.