It’s a theme I’ve been hitting on pretty much the entire season. What good is having a high-powered offense if it fizzles out when you need it the most? This is a riddle that the Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning has been trying to answer most of his illustrious career. And after Super Bowl XLVIII, he’s searching for the answer.
Other teams have come into the Super Bowl with the number one offense in the NFL and come up empty too. It’s fun seeing a team light up the score board, breaking records, and moving up and down the field on defenses at will. But in the end, it only takes one bad game to undo it all. We’ve seen it happen before.
In Super Bowl XLII, the New England Patriots came in unbeaten at 18-0, with a record-breaking offense too. But they lost. Tom Brady, Bill Belichick, and the Patriots won Super Bowls when their offense was nowhere near what they had in that game. They were a better team when Troy Brown was their number one wide receiver and not Randy Moss.
Because ultimately when teams chase that kind of offensive dominance, they lose sight of what the real goal actually is. The goal is not winning by blowing teams out, it’s just simply winning. Whether it’s by one point or one hundred points. A win is a win. Peyton Manning equates winning with great offensive stats, and that’s the wrong mentality.
What good is passing for 5,000 yards if your team comes up empty-handed? What good is passing for 50 touchdowns in a regular season, if it doesn’t translate into winning a championship? Russell Wilson’s passing stats seem paltry when compared next to Peyton Manning’s, but in the end who hoisted up the Lombardi Trophy?
Peyton Manning is a great player, one of the all-time greats, and his record-breaking stats might mean something in winning at fantasy football. But in real football they’re not necessary, and not relevant in winning championships.