Chris Harris Jr. and Aqib Talib
Two story lines have dominated the buildup to Super Bowl 50: Peyton Manning‘s unforgiving oldness and Cam Newton‘s unforgivable Blackness.
It’s no surprise, since quarterbacks are almost always the stars of the pre-Super Bowl show. But in most years there are at least some other intriguing angles for the media and for the public to latch onto: a reclusive running back’s maddening silence, a legendary linebacker’s impending retirement, a curmudgeonly coach’s mysterious methods.
This year, however, it seems to be all about the QBs. Which of course means that the difference-maker who will decide the outcome of Sunday’s game will probably be a player who received little to no attention during these two hype-filled weeks. And that man will suddenly become the subject of a thousand “Who is this guy?” pieces about the “unknown” who was completely available for get-to-know-you interviews while everyone was busy chasing Cam and Peyton. Continue reading
Tags: Aqib Talib, Bradley Roby, Charles Tillman, Chris Harris Jr., Cortland Finnegan, Darian Stewart, Josh Bush, Josh Norman, Kayvon Webster, Kurt Coleman, Robert McClain, Roman Harper, Shiloh Keo, Super Bowl 50, T.J. Ward, Tre Boston
Six secondary standouts from football’s week that was:
Sunday’s NFL conference title games were hyped and marketed as a pair of star-studded quarterback shootouts. In the AFC, it was future Hall of Fame legends Tom Brady and Peyton Manning going head-to-head; and in the NFC, former Heisman Trophy winners and 2015 MVP front-runners Cam Newton and Carson Palmer going throw for throw. But while Newton did put together another sparkling stat line, it was the respective defenses of the two winning teams that ultimately proved to be the difference between Super Bowl and sitting at home.
Kurt Coleman, SS, Panthers (NFL): Josh Norman certainly deserves all the praise he’s receiving for pushing his way into the best-cornerback-in-football conversation this season, but Coleman has been an invaluable and overlooked playmaker in Carolina’s secondary. Coleman had two interceptions against the Cardinals in Sunday’s NFC Championship game, one of them in the end zone to prevent what could have been a momentum-swinging TD for Arizona. Continue reading