Congratulations to the Super Bowl XLVIII champion Seattle Seahawks. And congratulations to the New York/New Jersey Super Bowl committee and the MetLife Stadium group for putting together an incredible event. Now, let's look at three things the New York Giants and their fans can learn from the Seahawks' 43-8 domination of the Denver Broncos.
1. Great Defense Still Wins
I should have known better than to pick the Broncos in the matchup of Seattle's league-best defense vs. Denver's statistically best in NFL history offense. History has taught us that when it matters most great defense usually stifles great offense. Even in this era of high-flying offense with pass-friendly rules we should have known that would still be true. Rush the passer, make the quarterback uncomfortable, stop the run, create turnovers, blanket receivers and punish them when they do catch the ball. That is classic defense the way it has always been played, and it is what the Legion of Boom does.
The lesson for the Giants? While they are, necessarily, spending the offseason focused on fixing their "broken" offense they cannot forget about the defense. That side of the ball was not the biggest problem in 2013, but it wasn't close to championship-caliber. In the end it was a basically average group that looked good compared to an offense that was atrocious. Key members like Jon Beason, Justin Tuck, Linval Joseph and Terrell Thomas are free agents.
The Giants have to do everything they can to not only keep as much of their defense intact as possible but to improve it if they want to compete for a title again.
2. NY/NJ Wants The Super Bowl Again
Giants' co-owner John Mara made it clear Sunday that he wants the Super Bowl to return to MetLife Stadium.
"I think you’d be pretty safe to say we’ll be looking to do this again," Mara said. "I’ve just had such positive feedback from so many different owners that I think we should do it again."
No city in the world is more capable of hosting a big event than New York City. New Jersey and MetLife Stadium proved more than capable of handling the game itself, so you can expect New York/New Jersey to bid for future Super Bowls.
"There are a lot of worthy cities, but let’s face it, there is only one area like this in the world," Mara said. "I think the other owners see all the positives that have come out of this week. I think that’s a huge advantage in our favor."
3. The Manning Face Never Goes Out Of Style
-- A mea culpa on my criticism of Bruno Mars' selection as the halftime entertainer. Yes, I watched. Mars was up to the task and did an excellent job.
-- Opera star Renee Fleming completely nailed the National Anthem. Her powerful, unembellished rendition of the Anthem is the way it was meant to be sung. Can the NFL just hire her to sing it every year?