Cam Newton dictated the pace of the game right away with an 18-yard pass to Ted Ginn Jr. Short passes were followed by a long string of rushes, with Jonathan Stewart, Fozzy Whittaker, and Cam Newton all chipping away yards and first downs. The three-minute, 13-play drive was held up by 10 straight rushing attempts, with Stewart squeezing in a 2-yard touchdown.
With half the quarter lost to time, the Broncos would have to answer with a score of their own if they were going to keep up the pace in Super Bowl 50. Despite a 25-yard kick return, Peyton Manning could only rush for two, get sacked for eight, pass for no net gain and turn over the football on their first three-and-out.
When Newton doesn’t have the passer game down pat, he’s always got the legs to take him where he’s got to get to. On 3rd and 12, Cam rushed for 20 yards to get the first down. It was short-lived, as several additional passes were either incomplete or for zero net yardage, forcing a turnover on downs. A vintage Manning pass somehow went for 57 yards (a dump pass to Demaryius Thomas for many yards after the catch) before a fumble forced a turnover, bringing the first quarter to a close.
End Of 1st Quarter: Carolina Panthers 7 – Denver Broncos 0
Next: 2nd Quarter