Dave and Taters from Long Beach, CA
John Elway praised the maturation of the last five drafts coming together. How much of the Denver team is cap friendly draft vs. free agency of the cheap and expensive variety? Great game!
Von Miller is a draft pick. Aqib Talib is a free agent of the expensive kind. The Broncos have done a great job of blending the draft and free agency. They are the shining example for those who favor spending in free agency. The amazing thing about the Broncos' success, as it pertains to free agency, is the headline acquisition, Peyton Manning, was not the difference-maker. I felt the Broncos had to play around him. Certainly, at crunch time, they turned the game over to their defense.
Steve from Seattle, WA
Vic, what is a catch? Former and current officials don't know. Players and coaches don't know. Who knows? Can't wait for the NFL to tweak it again. More and more guidelines to decipher a basic element of the game we never argued about when we were younger.
It's become comical. I expect the NFL's solution to this problem to be a review-everything approach and, in my opinion, that'll only make it worse. One man's catch is another man's incompletion. That's the way it is and I have a feeling that's the way it's going to continue to be.
Nicholas from Los Angeles, CA
Once again, we saw the best defense win the Super Bowl. Clearly, Ted Thompson understands this recurrence and has loaded us up on defense in the past few drafts. While our results have been mixed, what will it take for our defense to turn the corner and become dominant?
Rush the passer. Dominant defenses tend to be built on great pass-rushing fronts, but it's about more than sacks. It's about relentless pressure on the quarterback. He has to feel heat on him at all times. It makes him jittery. Cam Newton had the look of a beaten quarterback. The rush got to him physically and mentally.
Bryan from Los Angeles, CA
Best defense I have seen since the 2000 Ravens. What was your impression of the Broncos defense in the Super Bowl?
Their defensive line won the game. They stopped the run and rushed the quarterback, and that's a winning combination. The Broncos overmatched the Panthers' tackles, just as they dominated the Patriots' tackles. The Panthers knew that was the challenge they faced, and they certainly prepared for it, but they still couldn't defeat it. The Broncos have the pass rush of a dominant defense.
Wayne from Yuma, AZ
Vic, now that Denver won the Super Bowl after the first year of a new coach and renewed team defense due to Elway's free agents and drafts, do you believe Ted Thompson and Mike McCarthy will change their outlook and make more moves in the free-agent and trade market? If not, the question is why? Obviously, it worked for Elway and it also worked for Ron Wolf. Why doesn't Thompson adopt the same philosophy?
Wolf's Packers won one Super Bowl. Why is that good enough for him but not good enough for Thompson? The Broncos have won one Super Bowl under Elway. Why is that good enough for him but not good enough for Thompson? If your philosophy changes from year to year, depending on what team won the Super Bowl and how they did it, you'll lack commitment. Be who and what you are. Be true to your beliefs or you have none.
Kevin from Saint Michael, MN
Does this Denver win officially turn the page in the NFL to an era of defense?
That would not be my expectation. The NFL won't allow it.
Isiah from Portland, OR
When I saw Aqib Talib's facemask penalty, I immediately thought of your stories from the Steelers/Raiders rivalry. Something was weird about how there was no commentary about the play. He could've broken that guy's neck and it was his second personal foul play in the half. How was he not ejected? How is this not talked about?
That's not where I thought the commentary was weak. I was disappointed there wasn't more discussion about how the Broncos were playing around their passing game. I thought they were afraid to throw the ball. The game reminded me of Super Bowl V, and Manning reminded me of Johnny Unitas.
Tom from Wausau, WI
I went through the Denver Broncos roster and counted 16 free agents (including starters Peyton Manning, Owen Daniels, Emmanuel Sanders, Louis Vasquez, Demarcus Ware, Aqib Talib, and T.J. Ward), and went through the Packers roster and found six free agents (including starters Julius Peppers, James Jones and maybe Letroy Guion). How can Denver spend extra for all these quality free agents and starters and not be behind the eight ball and win the Super Bowl? I thought you would say their way of doing things would lead to disaster.
We've plowed this ground several times. What will be the long-term cost of this title? Will it cause the Broncos to go dormant? Are the Saints feeling the effects of being aggressive in free agency? How about Randall Cobb and Bryan Bulaga? Do they not count as pricey free-agent signings? Cobb was inside the signing window and was entertaining offers from other teams. If you want to load up for this year by pushing money into future years, it can be done, but what happens when you get to those future years? Will you look back and remember the Super Bowl you won? What if you don't win a Super Bowl? Will it have been worth the try? I favor an even approach to each season. I favor a young and repeating roster. Those are my beliefs. Even after seeing last night's game and acknowledging Denver's success, I would not adopt their approach to free agency. It's just not me. I believe high cash-over-cap spending compromises a team's future.
Brendan from Plymouth, MN
The Denver defense played well all year and especially on the big stage. With how it was constructed, do you expect an even bigger demand by fans this offseason to spend lavishly in free agency?
Shawn from Plover, WI
What do you think of Cam's refusal to answer questions after the game?
I think he needs to ask himself how his rift with the media is helping him perform. I don't think it is. He needs to get rid of this distraction. He has a chip on his shoulder and it's not a good kind of chip.
D.J. from Bristol, WI
Am I wrong in thinking the quarterbacks in that game played little to no role in the outcome? For some reason, that doesn't sit well with me.
It was a strange game. I acknowledge the strength of the Denver defense, but there were days when it gave up a lot of yardage and points. Two thoughts: 1) Carolina was off its game. 2) The AFC was the stronger conference in 2015.
Sam from Richfield, MN
Vic, do you predict the Broncos' win will create more free-agent mania in your inbox?
Tom from Appleton, WI
Vic, how does crow taste? Remember how ugly it was going to end for the Broncos and Manning? While you were busy squeezing that penny so hard Abe Lincoln's eyes popped out, Elway spent some money and won. Does it taste like chicken?
It tastes like honesty, which is what I provide in this column in the way of my opinion on spending big in free agency. I think it's dangerous. I think it can turn out the lights on a franchise for multiple seasons. It collapsed the team I previously covered. Why don't we revisit this subject in the future? The Broncos are facing some big roster decisions.