SANTA CLARA — This is the live blog for Super 50. I will update this frequently with information and analysis from the main press box.
2:35 Here are the Broncos inactives:
QB Trevor Siemian
CB Lorenzo Doss
CB Taurean Nixon
RB Juwan Thompson
C Sam Brenner
G Robert Myers Jr.
NT Darius Kilgo
2:36 Here are the Panthers inactives:
WR Brenton Bersin
CB Lou Young
S Dean Marlowe
RB Brandon Wegher
RB Cameron Artis-Payne
WR Kevin Norwood
DE Ryan Delaire
2:46 Peyton Manning’s arm doesn’t seem any stronger than it was a couple of weeks ago. His deep passes down the sideline flutter and die.
2:47 Prediction: Panthers 24, Broncos 20.
2:57 The groundskeepers seem to be picking up chunks of grass all over the field.
3:01 The Broncos are the home team even though they’re wearing white.
3:11 The Broncos sideline is in direct sunlight and the Panthers sideline is in shade. Doesn’t seem fair.
3:20 Steph Curry just smacked a drum on the Panthers sideline.
3:22 Who will have a better game, Vernon Davis or Steph Curry?
3:32 Lady Gaga. Ugh.
3:35 The Panthers call tails and win the toss. They defer.
3:36 Gorgeous coin flip by Joe Montana.
3:38 The Broncos will be driving into the wind. Let’s see if Manning’s arm is strong enough to throw through the 20-mile-an-hour gusts.
3:45 Peyton Manning floats a pass to the sideline on second-and-13 from the Panthers’ 17 and almost gets picked. Robert McClain jumped the pass. Could have been a pick-six. Denver makes a 34-yard field goal two plays later and take a 3-0 lead. Good drive, but Manning didn’t even try to convert the third-and-13 at the end. He checked down right away to C.J. Anderson.
3:48 Sounds like a home game for Denver.
3:50 Panthers currently have a 51.8 percent chance to win.
3:53 The Panthers go three-and-out as Greg Olsen makes a seven-yard catch on third-and-8. Olsen didn’t run a good route. Aqib Talib was all over him.
3:54 Emmanuel Sanders makes a fair catch at the Denver 25.
3:55 Now the Broncos have a 54.2 percent chance of winning.
3:56 On second-and-8, Cam Newton sailed a pass over Corey Brown’s head. Brown was wide open. Newton seems overhyped for the biggest game of his life.
3:58 Manning completes a pass to C.J. Anderson for no yards on third-and-1, and Denver goes three-and-out. Ted Ginn gets tackled at the Carolina 15 on the punt return.
4:00 Manning can’t throw the ball past the first-down marker on third-and-1. Bad.
4:02 Jerricho Cotchery juggles a deep pass on first down and the officials rule the pass incomplete. Ron Rivera is challenging.
4:05 Refs confirm their ruling of an incomplete pass.
4:07 On third-and-10, Cam Newton drops back and never sees Von Miller, who sacks Newton and strips the ball. Malik Jackson recovers in the end zone. 10-0 Denver. The Panthers left their right tackle Mike Remmmers on an island against Von Miller. Bad move.
4:09 Jonathan Stewart seemed to twist his ankle on second down. The Panthers seem in shock.
4:12 The Broncos blitz on third-and-8 and T.J. Ward sacks Newton. But Talib is flagged for taunting at the end of the play. Fifteen-yard penalty and an automatic first down.
4:14 Stewart is questionable with a foot injury.
4:15 Bradley Roby breaks up a pass intended for Cotchery on 3rd-and-four. The Panthers can’t run the ball or protect Newton.
4:20 On 3rd-and-three, Luke Kuechly blitzes up the middle and sacks Manning for a loss of 10. Denver goes three-and-out. Ted Ginn fields the punt at the Carolina 40 and gets tackled right away, but an illegal block-in-the-back penalty backs up the Panthers to their 27 with 1:15 left in the first quarter.
4:21 Stewart back at running back.
4:23 Newton completes a 20-yard pass to Corey Brown before the first quarter ends.
4:31 Stewart jumps over the pile and into the end zone on first-and-goal from the 1. Unstoppable. 10-7 Patriots.
4:32 Newton scrambled twice for 23 yards and threw twice for 31 yards on that drive. He seems to have calmed down.
4:33 Talib already flagged three times.
4:37 On first down, Manning slips and falls in the pocket, gets up and throws an incomplete pass. Great grass! The Panthers are challenging the play. They think Kony Ealy touched Manning down.
4:39 Rivera just used his final challenge and it’s successful. But, the Panthers are out of challenges with 11:18 left in the first half.
4:41 Manning throws a two-yard pass to Demaryius Thomas on 3rd-and-17 and Kuechly crushes him. Incomplete. The previous play, Manning threw deep and Josh Norman undercut the throw and almost picked it off. Carolina has all of the momentum.
4:44 The Broncos punt from their end zone and the ball bounces out of bounds at the Panthers 49.
4:46 Darian Stewart breaks up a pass intended for Olsen on 3rd-and-11. Panthers had only three players in the pattern.
4:47 Jordan Norword returns the punt 61 yards. The Panthers thought he called for a fair catch but he did not. Longest punt return ever in a Super Bowl.
4:51 Louis Vasquez flagged for holding on 4th-and-1 from the Carolina 5. Denver makes a 23-yard field goal and take a 13-7 lead.
4:54 Players starting to complain about the grass.
4:57 Darian Stewart strips Mike Tolbert and Danny Trevathan recovers.
5:03 On 3rd-and-8, Manning throws blind to Emmanuel Sanders and gets picked by Kony Ealy. Fire zone blitz fooled Manning.
5:05 Roby breaks up a deep pass over the middle intended for Corey Brown on 3rd-and-10, and the Panthers go three-and-out.
5:08 Manning throws behind Thomas on 3rd-and-2 and the pass falls incomplete. Denver goes three-and-out. Both offenses playing terribly.
5:09 Panthers ball at their 19 with 1:55 left in the half.
5:17 Newton throws a prayer downfield on 3rd-and-12 and rookie Devin Funchess comes down with the ball.
5:19 DeMarcus Ware blows past Michael Oher, sacks Newton and the first half ends.
5:20 The Broncos currently have a 71.8 percent chance of winning.
5:32 Singer from Coldplay doing some serious twirling around the stage.
5:33 Wallpaper is more exciting than Coldplay.
5:39 Coldplay is so boring the video screen just cut to a shot of James Brown performing 40 years ago.
5:51 Panthers start at their 20 after a touchback.
6:01 Graham Gano misses a 44-yard field goal off the right upright. Aqib Talib seemed to jump offside, but officials didn’t throw a flag.
6:02 Cotchery dropped a pass two plays earlier. He has dropped three in this game.
6:06 Manning completes a 25-yard pass and a 22-yard pass on the Broncos’ opening drive of the second half. On 3rd-and-5 from the Carolina 12, Manning throws to Sanders once again, but this time McClain breaks up the pass. Broncos make the field goal and take a 16-7 lead.
6:16 Newton’s pass flies through Ginn’s hands and lands in T.J. Ward’s stomach. He tries to run and fumbles, but Trevethan recovers at the Broncos 7. The Panthers are giving away this game.
6:20 Ronnie Hillman runs a draw and gains two yards on 3rd-and-17. They conceded that down.
6:22 Tre Boston flagged 15 yards on the punt return, so the Panthers will start at their 19.
6:29 Derek Wolfe sacks Newton on 3rd-and-8. Von Miller beat Remmers with a spin move and forced Newton to move into Wolfe.
6:30 The third quarter ends as C.J. Anderson rushes for no gain on 1st-and-10 from the Denver 32.
6:31 This game is even more evidence edge-rushers are more valuable than interior rushers.
6:36 Charles Johnson strips Manning in the pocket, and he falls on the ball for a sack. Two plays later, Kony Ealy strips Manning and the Panthers recover at midfield.
6:38 Corey Brown is OUT with a concussion.
6:42 Ted Ginn drops a pass on 3rd-and-10 from the Denver 22. Gano’s 40-yard field goal is good, and Broncos lead 16-10.
6:50 Denver goes three-and-out. Norman almost picks Manning on third down.
6:53 Cotchery runs a crossing route on 3rd-and-15 and gets tackled by Chris Harris two yards shy of the first-down marker. Great tackle. Broncos ball at their 25 after the punt.
6:57 Manning hands off three times and goes three-and-out. He’s standing on the ropes waiting for the fight to end.
7:01 On 3rd-and-9, Von Miller strips Newton and T.J. Ward recovers the ball at the Carolina 4. Newton didn’t make an attempt to recover the ball. Miller is the best player in the NFL.
7:04 Josh Norman is flagged for holding on 3rd-and-goal from the 4. Next play, C.J. Anderson scores for two yards out, and that’s the game. Biggest win of Peyton Manning’s career even though he was terrible.
7:08 Two-point conversion is good: Manning to Bennie Fowler on a slant.
7:09 Will Newton ever be the same after this?
7:11 DeMarcus Ware sacks Newton after Malik Jackson hits him. Newton throws the ball away on the next play. Now, the Panthers are punting with 2:08 left. Good grief.