NFL: Denver Broncos win Super Bowl

Peyton Manning with the Super Bowl trophy. Photo / AP
Peyton Manning with the Super Bowl trophy. Photo / AP

The Denver Broncos' defence paved the way for a comfortable Super Bowl victory over a disappointing Carolina Panthers, in a fitting way to send legendary quarterback Peyton Manning into expected retirement.

Veteran Manning did not have one of his great days but claimed a second Super Bowl ring in what is expected to be his last NFL game, although the 39-year-old has remained coy in public about his future.

As it happened: Denver win Super Bowl

After the 24 - 10 victory in San Francisco, Manning praised the resilience and "unselfishness" of his team, and told an interviewer "I'm going to drink a lot of Budweiser tonight...I can promise you that."

The game never reached great heights and nor did the Panthers star quarterback Cam Newton, who gave up a sack/fumble for Denver's first touchdown and struggled with the speed of their defence.

Manning will go down as one of the greats of NFL, his five league MVP's being the best in history. He was the Super Bowl MVP when the Indianapolis Colts beat the Chicago Bears in the 2007 Super Bowl. The match featured so many errors that USA Today described it as "absolutely hideous".

Newton was off his game and his receivers dropped his good passes. The match officials were also bagged in some quarters, particularly over one no-catch call.

Dejected Panthers tight end Greg Olsen. Photo / AP
Dejected Panthers tight end Greg Olsen. Photo / AP

The halftime show featuring Coldplay, Beyonce and Bruno Mars was a little flat, leaving pre-match anthem singer Lady Gaga as the bizarre star of the big show.

Broncos linebacker Von Miller, whose sack led to the initial Denver touchdown, was superb and named the MVP, a deserved award for the way he hounded Newton. Teammate Jordan Norwood also set a Super Bowl record with a 61 yard punt return.

- NZ Herald

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