Cam Newton fumbled twice in Super Bowl 50. The first fumble gave the Denver Broncos a 10-0 lead.
The second fumble gave them the game.
“Oh, man, we’re just yelling on the sideline,” Broncos linebacker Corey Nelson said on CBS Sports Radio’s After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “We just knew right then and there, that moment, that we had the game sealed.”
Nelson, of course, is referring to Newton’s fourth-quarter fumble. The Panthers trailed just 16-10 and were driving with a chance to tie or win the game. Instead, Newton fumbled on a 3rd-and-9 play from his own 25. Players on both sides fought for the ball, which T.J. Ward recovered at the Carolina 4-yard-line.
“All we had to do was go out there and make a couple of more stops and it would have been in our hands,” Nelson said. “We were ecstatic on the sidelines. At that moment, everyone knew that we had it in our hand and everyone knew that we didn’t want to give up that lead or that fumble. We wanted to capitalize on everything.”
C.J. Anderson scored from two yards out, and Peyton Manning found Bennie Fowler for the two-point conversion to cap the scoring at 24-10.
Von Miller was named Super Bowl MVP, but the entire defense could have shared the award. That unit carried Denver not only in the playoffs, but for much of the regular season as well. Fourteen of Denver’s 19 games were decided by a touchdown or less. Denver went 11-3 in those games.
“Throughout the whole season, it’s been a playoff-atmosphere game,” Nelson said. “When we played our first game against Kansas City, (the) defense forced the fumble with a couple seconds left in the fourth quarter. When we went to Cleveland, we went into overtime and pulled out with a win there. We played the Patriots the first time and won in overtime. So we’ve been in countless games like that. So playing the playoffs when we were in tight game like that, it was nothing new to us because we knew that was how we won our games. We knew that we would win with those type of games because that’s the type of atmosphere that we were used to. It allowed us to play well because we knew that no matter what, the odds were in our favor because that’s the type of game we were used to.”