SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Demaryius Thomas didn’t contribute much at all in the Broncos’ 24-10 win over the Panthers in Super Bowl 50 on Sunday night; he had just one reception for 8 yards and dropped what should have been an easy catch in the second quarter.
But it was nevertheless an emotionally satisfying win for the Denver wide receiver, who brought his mother to the game to complete a dream come true for the family after her release from prison in July.
“It was very special to have her here, only her second game that she’s come to,” Thomas said. “It’s great to be able to celebrate with your family.”
Thomas was 11 years old when his mother, Katina Smith, was sentenced to a 20-year term for her involvement in a cocaine-selling operation. She was released, however, after President Barack Obama commuted her sentence.
It was another disappointing individual performance for Thomas, who vowed to have an improved game after finishing with just two catches in the AFC Championship Game against the Patriots. But Thomas focused more on the outcome, not his weak numbers.
“Feels amazing. It’s a dream come true,” he said. “I’m really excited. I’m kind of at a loss for words.”
Thomas isn’t sure what lies ahead for quarterback Peyton Manning, but if this was his last game, what a way to go out.
“He’ll go out on top [if he retires], and I think he deserves it with the stuff he’s been through this year with being hurt and the naysayers saying stuff about him,” Thomas said. “Win a Super Bowl, and hopefully, he may stay around. I never know what he’ll do, but I’m proud of him.”
Shocked at the final outcome?
“I can’t say we shocked the world,” he said. “The past two weeks, we’ve been underdogs, and we still were able to come out and win. We don’t care what people are going to say. We’re going to go out and play Bronco football and that’s what we did tonight.”