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Published on 09/19/2010 at Sun Sep 19 17:17.
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Wide receiver Demaryius Thomas #88 of the Denver Broncos makes a reception as cornerback Kelly Jennings #21 of the Seattle Seahawks tries to make the tackle at INVESCO Field at Mile High on September 19, 2010 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Seahawks 31-14.  (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Wide receiver Demaryius Thomas #88 of the Denver Broncos makes a reception as cornerback Kelly Jennings #21 of the Seattle Seahawks tries to make the tackle at INVESCO Field at Mile High on September 19, 2010 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Seahawks 31-14. (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

The Denver Broncos‘ second big rookie debut in as many weeks wasn’t as hungered for, but was much more satisfying.

Wide receiver Demaryius Thomas reminded the masses why he was selected three spots ahead of superstar teammate Tim Tebow Sunday, exploding onto the scene at INVESCO Field at Mile High with nine catches for 97 yards and a touchdown to lead the Broncos over the Seattle Seahawks 31-14.

Thomas led a dominant offensive effort that was supported by a 14 of 20 mark on third downs and four Broncos takeaways.

The Broncos began their home opener by forcing a pair of turnovers. Champ Bailey intercepted QB Matt Hasselbeck on Seattle’s opening drive deep in Denver territory. After the Broncos’ opening offensive series stalled, Bronco cornerback Cassius Vaughn recovered a muffed punt and the Broncos went on to score the game’s first points.

They wouldn’t look back. Denver used an impressive receiving tandem of Knowshon Moreno, Eddie Royal, Brandon Lloyd, and Thomas, who all snared receptions of at least 20 yards, to wear out the Seahawks defense and march up and down the field. Kyle Orton was exceptional (25 for 35, 307 yards, 2 TDs — one each to Royal and Thomas), Moreno and Correll Buckhalter added a touchdown apiece on the ground, and the Broncos put a thirty-burger on their longtime AFC West rival.

Hasselbeck was intercepted twice more, once by Brian Dawkins and once by rookie Perrish Cox.

It was by no means a complete performance. The Broncos’ special teams coverage unit continues to allow big gains to opposing returners, allowing Golden Tate a 63-yard punt return in the second half. The defense was opportunistic in its takeaways but was far too flexible otherwise. Hasselbeck had a comfortable pocket for most of the game, even with former Broncos linemen Tyler Polumbus and Ben Hamilton, both of whom the Broncos deemed unfit for a roster spot this offseason, blocking for him.

The Broncos next face the Indianapolis Colts at home, whose quarterback will surely provide a tougher challenge if given the same amount of time in the pocket. But today, Kyle Orton and company showed they just might have the offensive firepower to compete with them.

  • Hope

    That is the way you play some $#@&in foot ball.

  • Kyle

    We ARE gonna win a MF'ing game, coach!!

  • Dan

    Finally a solid offensive line performance…Orton had plenty of time to throw…And, how about our rookie Thomas! And, Royal too…What a geat time watching that offense. Maybe next week we can see the defense put on a display like that. And defensive turnovers too…Nice.

  • Guess

    I have a feeling that next weeks game between Denver and Indy is going to be one high scoring game. Both offenses are looking very good as of today. Hopefully with our depth at corner, we will be able to get some interceptions next week and pull off another win! Its going to be exciting. Today seven of our players had receptions. How can a defense focus on stopping that while also trying to stop the run? ( Even though our run offense is not very good yet, I'm not impressed with our O-Line when it comes to that. If Knowshon doesnt jump and reach on the 3rd and goal play, we dont get the touchdown. And we only had half a yard to go and our O-line couldnt get enough push) Will be fun to watch!

  • Doom92

    I dont think that I was the only one that thought Knowshawn was a dancer last week, seems some one on the staff thought so as well… Today was for sure much more power running from him and what we are used to. I'd so that he was Yesshawn today…lol :-)

  • mikebirty

    What a nice simple easy game. I can't remember a game for a while where I was so comfortable at the start of the last quarter that I could go to bed and sleep easy.

    Next week is gonna be a shoot out. But the way Kyle Orton is playing I'll back him and I'll back our secondary in any game – even if it is Peyton Manning.

    Knowshon looked banged up in the second half but he was great in the first. Adding in Maroney to the mix will be great for next week. Also was I the only one who saw loads of Zone Blocking?

    Create turnovers, limit penalties, convert on 3rd down – easy!

  • flbronc

    offense looked great… defense had me on pins and needles all game. they created turnovers, which was great, but they don't appear to be able to stop a drive by simply tackling guys. they were awful on third down. without our ridiculous third down conversion % on offense we would have been in big trouble.

    this team will be scary good if/when we get an above average defense.

  • Diggums

    Our rushing offense was horrible. The only part of our offense that is firing right now is the passing game. It was only great play by our recievers and Orton that we were able to convert so many third and longs. Our O-Line is not really helping at all either when it comes to the run game. Sure they give Orton a lot of time in the pocket by why cant we get any running lanes? Why did we trade to get these big TE's if they can't contain a block to get the running back out around the outside…or inside…or over, under anywhere!

    Only good thing about the defense was the turnovers. Everything else was poor from missed tackles or sloppy play. We have zero pash rush. I dont think Hasselbeck was even hurried once. No blitzes, and we cant stop the run. Big thumbs up for Parrish Cox though…that kid is good. Goodman…watch some tape of Champ and take some notes….see how he looks at the quarterback? Yeah try doing that.

    Special teams. If we didnt have Matt Prater to kick it through the uprights, both on field goals and Kick offs we would be in real trouble. As it is we only need to really worry about punts…cause once we punt queue the Benny Hill theme song and break out the whipped cream pies. Seriously. Play the Benny Hill song and watch Tate's run or any of the other punt returns…its much more entertaining than crying into a warm beer.

  • anthony33

    Agree with most of your points even though you would have thought we lost the game based on your comments.

    Very few teams run AND pass the ball equally well, but I do worry about the complete lack of a running game right now. Having a patch work O-line is not helping matters and hopefully they will get better as key folks get healthy and the young guys get more time in the trenches. I still say this will be a great group this time next year. Orton looks in control and our receivers might be in the top quarter of the leauge already… with room to get better.

    Defense… still terrible overall… Ayers regressed, no pressure up front… secondary very good, but can't do it all. A good running team will kill us.

    Special teams: Both kickers look great. Both coverage teams suck. Return teams are not much better… disappointed because I thought they would be much improved.