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Denver Broncos’ Peyton Manning (18) holds up the trophy after the NFL Super Bowl 50 football game Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos beat the Panthers 24-10. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

“I got some good advice from Tony Dungy,” Manning said of the first of four coaches with whom he’s been to the Super Bowl. “He said, ‘Don’t make an emotional decision.’ This has been an emotional week, an emotional night. I’m going to take some time to reflect.”


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Phillips built a defense that ranked first in the league and which is greatly responsible for the Broncos making the Super Bowl. He earned 16 votes from a nationwide panel of 50 sports writers and broadcasters who regularly cover the league.


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FILE - In this Nov. 15, 2015, file photo, Kansas City Chiefs free safety Eric Berry (29) runs back an interception during an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos in Denver. Berry, who missed 10 games the previous season battling lymphoma, then returned to the Chiefs to become an All-Pro, has won The Associated Press NFL Comeback Player of the Year award.  (AP Photo/Joe Mahoney, File)

“It means so much, but not just for myself,” Newton said in a video acceptance speech for the MVP award. “To be the first person in Panthers history to win it — that’s what I’m most proud about. I’ve received a lot of awards, but to be able to get this organization here, I’m really proud. We didn’t get in this position by happenstance. It took years of hard work and dedication, and now we are reaping the benefits.”


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Carolina Panthers cornerback Josh Norman (24) participates in a drill during practice in preparation for the Super Bowl 50 football game Thursday Feb. 4, 2016 in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Denver is only the fifth team in the past half-century to rank No. 1 in both of those categories over a full season, according to STATS, and they shut down two-time Super Bowl champion Ben Roethlisberger’s Pittsburgh Steelers and four-time champ Tom Brady’s New England Patriots en route to the AFC title.


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