Posted Sat Oct 9th by Ian Henson
What people failed to notice is that I came within one point of predicting each teams score the Denver Broncos can probably beat anyone in the NFL… if they can just get their running game together. Name a player on Denver’s defense without the last name: Williams, Bailey or Ayers… Don’t look– yeah you probably got one, but name five… And although it’s not boast able in any shape or form the Broncos defense sits in the middle of the NFL in all major categories, despite facing two of the top three running backs in the league and Peyton Manning’s Indianapolis Colts after four weeks.
2-2 is probably what most smart analytics would have the Broncos at if they were guessing these games beforehand, but Denver holding Chris Johnson to less yards than the Pittsburgh Steelers is something only I am crazy enough to predict. Though, I didn’t, I figured the secondary is where the Titans would aim their sites. This is where the Baltimore Ravens will make their mistake, sure, they’ll try Ray Rice, but with his will-he/won’t-he injury persistent, even fantasy footballers aren’t sure whether to start him or not (and he’s a first round pick). Willis McGahee did well against the Steelers last week, but the Broncos are not the Steelers and Baltimore is jam-packed with receiving talent.
Here’s where Denver has them, if Andre Goodman is back, Perrish Cox fits perfectly into that nickle spot and this is where Denver’s defense has been hit hard. Nate Jones is not the answer, but Cox is and with Jones covering a fourth receiver (likely T.J. Houshmandzadeh) in dime situations the Broncos aren’t all that bad off. I would love to see what that incredible special teamer Cassius Vaughn can do in a more predominant role in the secondary though… The kid plays with a chip on his shoulder and his talent is screaming to be let loose.
Baltimore’s coming in high off their win over Pittsburgh and they’re going to get their throats cut, because Josh McDaniels and Wink Martindale are focused. The loss to Indianapolis was all Denver needed to light the spark that exposed every weakness on the Broncos defense. Denver will not face a better offense all year than they did in Indianapolis. I maintain, as should you, that the game against the Colts was winnable… Now that’s scary.
So here are the X factors the Ravens defense is number one against the pass, the Broncos offense is number one passing. The Ravens defense is number twenty-one against the run, the Broncos are dead last in rushing.
Denver fans grab for their hair every time Laurence Maroney takes a hand off; in fact I want to take the opportunity and speak directly to McDaniels– how bad could Andre Brown and Lance Ball possibly be? Get Maroney off the team, now. You had no problem getting rid of Peyton Hillis, what in the hell are you doing letting Maroney continue to replace Knowshon Moreno? Correll Buckhalter was a big reason Denver started off 6-0 last season, please don’t be so forgetful.
That being said, McDaniels play calling can speak for itself, as evidence by Kyle Orton and the Broncos receiver’s numbers this season. Maybe instead of throwing the ball only 50 times this Sunday Denver throws for 60. Who needs a rushing game when the team can just throw for seven yards at a time instead?
Broncos win 34-20.
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