Posted Mon Oct 25th by Josh Temple
How do you follow up one of the worst losses in Franchise history? Being outfoxed by the head coach of a 1-5 team is certainly one way to start. Denver being selected as one of the teams to compete in the UK for an international audience creates an interesting opportunity, it also makes for a unique challenge. Roger Goodell’s focus on bringing the NFL abroad has redefined the term “short week” making a brutal overseas trip a hurdle in of itself. Mike Singletary applied a gameplan to his team’s travel itinerary. Josh McDaniels? Bronconation can’t be so sure.
The Broncos will not travel early in the week. They have Monday off and will practice Tuesday through Thursday in Denver after which they will travel to England. They will follow that up with a Friday morning press conference and afternoon practice. Doesn’t leave much time to sleep off the jet lag, does it? Compare that to the 49ers’ travel plans. After yesterday’s loss in Carolina they boarded a flight direct to Heathrow. They had all night to sleep on the plane and were given Monday off to rest or sight see in London. They will then attend a normal practice schedule at their temporary facility until Monday.
One can argue that McD is playing the opposite strategy in traveling abroad. Get the hard work out of the way early in the week, then travel. But he is still not giving the team much down time once they arrive. Almost anyone who has traveled from the US to Europe will tell you that the jet lag is a killer. There is something about going West to East, your circadian rhythm, and shaking that groggy feeling. Speaking from personal experience it took me a full 14 hours of sleep in two good sessions to come off of the travel exhaustion. (I don’t sleep well on planes and I didn’t have the luxury of flying Virgin Atlantic.)
Denver has an opportunity to place a mark in the winner’s column. They have Alex Smith recovering in a London hospital facing an opponent that is also reeling and has not lived up to their pre-season expectations. I’m a believer in getting your team into a strange place early and letting them acclimate. I would certainly employ this tactic if I had team traveling to Mile High and battling the altitude. One also has to take into account the players learning what it’s like to perform “on the pitch”. Soccer grass is a much different blend and cut than American Football turf. It would be nice to see the Broncos organization use this as a chance to regroup and attack the second half of the season. The other head coach certainly is.
“It really works to be a bonus for us. I think this week gives us a great opportunity to take a step back, smell the roses a bit and put the pieces in place to get there.” – Mike Singletary
I will chalk this up to Singletary being a former player and McDaniels being a professional coach. I’m going to lean toward the Hall of Fame Middle Linebacker knowing what his players need in this situation based off of experience. Is it “arrogance” on the part of Josh to put his players on this schedule? A label that he gets tagged with often by his critics. I won’t take it that far, but I will say it’s another sophomore mistake.