I pointed out last week in my pregame analysis “even though the New Orleans Saints were defeated by the Seattle Seahawks 23-15, Seahawks QB Russell Wilson was only 9-18 for 103 yards. Mr. Wilson [was] going to have to toss the “rock” for at least “two-fitty” [against the 49ers] if the Seahawks [were to] have any chance of advancing to the “big dance” at the New York “tundra station.”

Well ladies and gents I was partially correct. Russell Wilson did not throw for 250 yards but he did toss the rock for a respectable 215 yards, just three yards shy of doubling his total against the New Orleans Saints.

As far as the NFL goes, we can always expect the unexpected. Don’t you want to know why? Well me and my big mouth is gonna “tell it” anyway.

During the 2013 regular season New Orleans had the No. 2  pass defense in the league, while the 49ers were ranked No. 7  so everyone expected the Seahawks to have a bit more success against San Francisco but for the 49ers to miss several crucial coverage’s not because of  flawed defensive schemes but because of ball “unawareness” was unforeseen by most of us “pundits.’

As far as the final play of the game is concerned, Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman must have been,  no he was on the “praying list” not the “preying list” of a bunch of folk, especially his head coach Pete Carroll and his Sherman’s yoga teacher because the way he had to twist his body around to deflect final pass, had the ball been just a mere two inches to the left, let’s just say he would have been a bit more subdued in his post game defeat comments. My nickname for him is Richard “Don King” Sherman.

The Seahawks decision to feature or at least try to feature the passing game made more sense because the 49ers had the No. 4 ranked rushing defense in the NFL in 2013 but when it came down to crunch time,  Seahawks running back Marshawn “the human tank” Lynch was stifled for much of the game but put his foot on the throat of the 49ers when it counted carrying the ball 22 times for 109 yards, including a 40 yard spirit buster.  Seattle is a great young team but I will break it down position by position for my Super Bowl XLVIII preview.  The battle lines have been drawn.

Super Bowl XLVIII will feature a classic battle of wills.  Old against young, experience versus inexperience, stamina against fatigue. The Denver Broncos especially their quarterback Peyton Manning impressed me not only with their victory against the New England Patriots but also just as young men who still have that twinkle in their eyes not just because of the money but also they love to play the game.  Even though for obvious reasons I am not one of the more vocal fans of the south; yes I am a “damn Yankee,” Manning a surefire NFL future hall-of-famer is a gentleman, a scholar and a young role model that even a few sports writers should try to emulate. The Broncos won 26-16 but more than that Peyton Manning may have finally removed Bill Belichick and Tom Brady from his head.

Although I have been extremely critical of Bill Belichick, (like he gives a damn) I felt him mellowing out just a bit after the loss. I am reasonably certain that he will be rooting for the AFC to win the Lombardi…later.

(Aubrey Bruce can be reached at: abruce@newpittsburghcourier.com or 412-583-6741.)

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