Valdosta Daily Times

Top Sports News

February 1, 2014

Does defense win championships?

-- — That old maxim about defenses winning championships was being spread on pretty heavily during Super Bowl week.

By the Broncos, of all teams.

Yes, the very same AFC champions who tore up the league with a record 606 points, 55 touchdowns coming off Peyton Manning's arm, have been touting how strong their defense has become.

Measure it against Seattle's unit, which allowed a very miserly 231 points and ranked first against the pass and in overall D, and the Broncos would seem to be whistling a hollow tune.

But linebacker Danny Trevathan, a breakout player in his second NFL season, sees plenty of greatness in his defense, too.

"Oh yeah. You are supposed to have that attitude," Trevathan said. "On defense you're not supposed to let guys push you over. You are supposed to be the aggressor on defense and you are supposed to have that attitude. I think that is what makes playing defense so passionate to me.

"I think this game was meant for tough guys. You can't be soft out here."

No one is soft on either of these teams, of course. On the contrary, it's only the second time in 20 years that the top seed in each conference got this far.

It's also that classic matchup that so excites fans, media and, yes, players. The Seahawks can't wait for the chance to test themselves against Manning, seeking his second ring in an almost-certain Hall of Fame career.

"It's going to be a great challenge," middle linebacker Bobby Wagner said. "They're talented all across the board. They protect Peyton well and they run the ball well. He's definitely passed the ball well. It's up to us to do our jobs and make sure that we come ready to play."

Expect both sides to be very ready. Denver (15-3, No. 2 in the AP Pro32) is a 2 1-2-point favorite over Seattle (also 15-3, but top-ranked in the AP Pro32).

The main reason for that spread: In the points-crazed NFL, fans who bet early dive headfirst into the offense. With their wallets open.

Plus, the biggest star in this game, and pretty much any time he is in uniform, is Manning. That draws more support for the Broncos.

But not here.

Pro Picks sees the Seahawks' quick, relentless and heady defense putting more pressure on Manning than he has seen all season. Yes, he's been sacked only 20 times, and he might not go down a whole bunch in the Jersey Meadowlands on Sunday. But he will be forced to throw before he wants to or before his four outstanding receivers — Demaryius Thomas, Wes Welker, Eric Decker and tight end Julius Thomas — shake free from the tight coverage of the NFL's best secondary led by All-Pros Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas.

Seattle also brings the heat with the deepest rotation of linemen in the league, and some savvy, versatile linebackers. The Seahawks don't take their foot off the gas, either.

For the Broncos to prosper, they'll need a huge contribution from Knowshon Moreno and the running game. It could happen, particularly if the Seahawks are overly protective of not letting Manning get on track.

But hardly anyone dominates on the ground against Seattle.

For those who believe the Seahawks will need to light up the scoreboard to beat the Broncos, we think a couple of touchdowns and a few field goals will do the job. Silent man Marshawn Lynch running the ball in Beast Mode, and some improvisation from quarterback Russell Wilson — along with the best defense since the 2000 Ravens — will be enough.

SEAHAWKS, 23-21

1
Text Only
Top Sports News
  • MLS.jpg Atlanta lands MLS expansion team for 2017

    Arthur Blank donned traditional soccer garb to mark his newest venture — an MLS team for Atlanta.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Blazer barrage downs No. 23 Georgia College

    Valdosta State unleashed a season-high 19 hits and tied a season-best in runs as the Blazers defeated No. 23 Georgia College 15-8 in non-conference baseball action at John Kurtz Field Wednesday evening.

    April 17, 2014

  • 2014 Jump.jpg Showtime in the Down Under

    Just a junior in high school, Valwood’s Chandler Cargile has already seen things that most people don’t get to experience in a lifetime. Cargile recently returned to Lake Park from Mulwala, Australia, where he competed in the Barefoot Water Ski World Championships. The competition hosted participants from 15 countries and lasted for two weeks last month.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Valdosta State tennis gears up for GSC Tournament

    The Valdosta State men's and women's tennis teams are set to compete against the rest of the league in the Gulf South Conference Tournament, scheduled to be played this week in Montgomery, Ala. for the seventh straight season.

    April 17, 2014

  • VSU scrimmage6.jpg Valdosta State’s offense comes alive, narrowly defeating the ‘Black Swarm’ 59-55

    Worried more about helping Valdosta State win than impressing in his quarterback battle, Kaleb Nobles got the opportunity to do both at the end of the Blazers' spring game Saturday.

    April 13, 2014 4 Photos

  • Baseball drops a pair at West Georgia

    West Georgia got a walk-off 6-5 victory in the first game before using a late-inning rally to win game two 8-4 as the Wolves swept a Gulf South Conference baseball doubleheader from Valdosta State at Cole Field Saturday.

    April 12, 2014

  • Men's tennis clips the Shorter Hawks, 6-1

    The Valdosta State Blazers took care of business against the Shorter Hawks with a short 6-1 win in Gulf South Conference men's tennis action on Saturday morning at The Blazer Tennis Courts.

    April 12, 2014

  • Calhoun throws no-hitter to cap off sweep of UWG

    The Valdosta State Blazer softball team put together a strong effort in a Gulf South Conference doubleheader in Carrollton on Saturday to defeat the West Georgia Wolves 7-3 and 5-0.

    April 12, 2014

  • Women's tennis topples nationally ranked Shorter, 6-0

    In a battle of two of the nation's top 25 teams on Saturday, the No. 15 Valdosta State women's tennis team walked away with a dominant 6-0 win over No. 22 Shorter in Gulf South Conference action at the Blazer Tennis Courts.

    April 12, 2014

  • Kaleb2.jpg Replacing Cochran

    More than 5,100 yards, 46 touchdowns, and a 60 percent completion rating during the span of 30 games in three years; Valdosta State has some big shoes to fill at the most important position heading into the 2014-15 season.

    April 9, 2014 2 Photos

Top News
Poll

What you think about school and workplace rules about Facebook friends?

There have to be rules.
No need for rules, just use common sense.
If people want to be friends, what is the big deal?
Nobody uses Facebook anymore.
     View Results