Super Bowl LII was the 52nd Super Bowl game, played on February 2018 at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota, to decide the National Football League champion for the 2017 season. The game was won by the American Football Conference (AFC) Champion Indianapolis Colts, who defeated the National Football Conference (NFC) Champion Carolina Panthers, appearing in their second Super Bowl in three years. Led by Super Bowl MVP Andrew Luck, the Colts defeated the Panthers 30-17 after coming back from a 17-6 halftime deficit to win the franchise's third Super Bowl title.
Carolina Panthers Edit
The Panthers advanced to Super Bowl LII after going 14-2 and winning their fifth consecutive NFC South championship. Panthers star quarterback Cam Newton was once again the regular season MVP as well as Offensive Player of the Year, and the Panthers sported the second-overall scoring defense in the league and earned the first overall seed. In addition to Newton, the Panthers defense sported Kony Ealy, who was the NFL sack leader and runner-up for Defensive Player of the Year, as well as Luke Kuechly, who led the NFL in tackles and came fifth in sacks, and veteran safety Kurt Coleman, who led the NFL in interceptions. The Panthers were praised coming into the playoffs as one of the best teams in NFL history, possibly better than the 15-1 iteration in 2015 that lost Super Bowl 50.
In the playoffs, the Panthers defeated the defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks in the divisional round 24-20 and then went on to beat the Green Bay Packers at Bank of America Stadium 42-17 in the NFC Championship Game.
Indianapolis Colts Edit
The Indianapolis Colts earned the third seed in the AFC playoff after winning the AFC South with an 11-5 record. In their first-round game, the Colts defeated the Oakland Raiders 42-14 in a rout, advancing next to face the second-seed Baltimore Ravens. On the road, the Colts came back from a 20-7 halftime deficit to win 31-30 on a last-second touchdown pass from Andrew Luck to TY Hilton. The Colts advanced to face the top-seeded Denver Broncos, where Andrew Luck led the Colts on two touchdown drives late in the game to force overtime, which the Colts won on an interception return off of Broncos quarterback Paxton Lynch.