EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ
— The Seattle Seahawks' ferocious defense shut down the Denver Broncos and record-setting quarterback Peyton Manning in a 43-8 rout on Sunday to claim their first Super Bowl title.
Seattle, the NFL's top-ranked defense, turned two interceptions into second-quarter touchdowns for a 22-0 lead at intermission, the second coming on a 69-yard interception return by linebacker Malcolm Smith.
The Seahawks also recovered two fumbles in the lopsided contest that gave them their first Super Bowl crown in their 37 seasons.
After Denver's second half kickoff, Percy Harvin also took 12 seconds to score, racing 87 yards into the end zone to confirm the romp was on in taking Seattle's lead to 29-0.
Second-year quarterback Russell Wilson, leading the second youngest team ever to play in a Super Bowl, took the spotlight from five-time NFL Most Valuable Player Manning by completing 18 of 25 passes for 206 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions.
Seattle took charge from the start; on the Broncos' first play from their 14-yard line following the opening kickoff, the snap sailed over quarterback Peyton Manning's head and running back Knowshon Moreno recovered it in the end zone and was tackled for a safety that gave Seattle a 2-0 lead.
The score came 12 seconds into the game, the quickest tally ever in a Super Bowl.
Seattle took the ensuing punt from the Broncos on their own 36-yard line and on the second play, Percy Harvin took a handoff on an end around and dashed 30 yards.
The drive continued to the Denver 13 where Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson's scramble left him one yard short of a first down and the Seahawks settled for a 31-yard field goal by Steven Hauschka that made it 5-0.
A three-and-out by Denver forced another punt, and Seattle took over on their 32. Wilson used his scrambling skills to keep the drive alive on a third-down play and then floated a perfect pass down the left sideline to Doug Baldwin for a 37-yard gain and a first-and-goal from the six.
A penalty pushed the Seahawks back and Hauschka booted a 33-yard field goal for an 8-0 lead in the first quarter.
Two defensive plays by the top-ranked Seattle defense turned into touchdodwns in the second quarter.
An overthrown pass by Manning was intercepted by Kam Chancellor and Marshawn Lynch eventually bulled over from the one for a touchdown that made it 15-0.
Pass-rushing defensive end Cliff Avril hit Manning's arm on a throwing attempt and the ball floated into the middle of the field where linebacker Malcolm Smith intercepted it and ran 69 yards for a touchdown and a 22-0 lead.
The numerals for the the game are seen at an opening ceremony for 'Super Bowl Boulevard' along Broadway as preparations continue for Super Bowl XLVIII in New York, Jan. 29, 2014.
Seattle Seahawks fans Todd Gibson and his son Karsten pose outside the stadium before the start of the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game in East Rutherford, New Jersey, Feb. 2, 2014.
Fans Todd Barnes and Mitch Daniels photograph themselves on Super Bowl Boulevard in Times Square prior to Super Bowl XLVIII, Jan. 31, 2014, in New York City.
A police officer and his dog walk past football fans at the Secaucus Junction in Secaucus, N.J., Feb. 2, 2014.
Tim Froemke of Ritzville Wash., waits in a security line at the Secaucus Junction in Secaucus, N.J., Feb. 2, 2014.
Football fans wait in a security line at the Secaucus Junction in Secaucus, N.J., Feb. 2, 2014.
Seattle Seahawks fans pose for a picture in Times Square while they visit the Super Bowl Boulevard fan zone ahead of Super Bowl XLVIII in New York, Feb. 1, 2014.
Fans hold up posters of (R-L) Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll, quarterback Russell Wilson, running back Marshawn Lynch, and cornerback Richard Sherman while they gather en masse at Super Bowl Boulevard fan zone ahead of Super Bowl XLVIII in New York, Feb. 1, 2014.
Seattle Seahawks fans sign a "12th Man" flag on "Super Bowl Boulevard" at Times Square, as part of the Super Bowl lead up, in New York Feb. 1, 2014.
Ron Hebron, of Portland, Oregon, wears his beard with Seattle Seahawks colors on Super Bowl Boulevard in Times Square in New York, Jan. 31, 2014.
Blitz, right, the Seattle Seahawks mascot, is sits with Miles, left, the Denver Broncos mascot, Jan. 31, 2014, on top of a Super Bowl sign during a live TV broadcast in Times Square in New York.
A man dressed as the Statue of Liberty poses for photos with football fans along Super Bowl Boulevard. Jan. 31, 2014, in New York. T
A fan of the Seattle Seahawks jokes with a fan of the Denver Broncos at the Super Bowl Boulevard fan zone ahead of Super Bowl XLVIII in New York, Jan. 30, 2014.
A billboard is displayed along Super Bowl Boulevard in Times Square in New York, Jan. 31, 2014.
Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll and Denver Broncos head coach John Fox speak at a news conference, Jan. 31, 2014, in New York.
A fan visits the Super Bowl Boulevard fan zone ahead of Super Bowl XLVIII in New York, Jan. 30, 2014.
A police officer walks next to a fan at the Super Bowl Boulevard fan zone ahead of Super Bowl XLVIII in New York, Jan. 30, 2014.
Denver Broncos strong safety David Bruton runs an interception drill during an indoor practice session for the Super Bowl at the New York Jets Training Center in Florham Park, New Jersey, Jan. 30, 2014.
Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning readies to throw a pass during a practice session for the Super Bowl at the New York Jets Training Center in Florham Park, New Jersey, Jan. 30, 2014.
Soprano Renee Fleming speaks at the Super Bowl half time press conference in New York, Jan. 30, 2014.
Bruno Mars who will headline the half-time show at Super Bowl XLVIII during a press conference, Jan. 30, 2014, in New York.
The New York skyline and the Empire State Building are seen in the distance as roman numerals for NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game are displayed in Hoboken, New Jersey, Jan. 30, 2014.
Seattle Seahawks fans walk to the stadium before the start of the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game in East Rutherford, New Jersey, Feb. 2, 2014.