I've been doing a lot of studying of the Broncos and Colts and I have come up with a few specific tactical strategies that the Broncos can use on offense and defense as they take on the Colts. This is the game of the year, and if you want to be the best you've got to beat the best. Here is how I see the Broncos attacking the Colts.
Everyone has mentioned running the football and time of possession as keys to the game. I agree with this and believe that the Broncos will bring out some formations from earlier in the season on offense. Defense will come down to winning one on one battles, which is football as it was meant to be. We just need to put Dumervil and Bailey, our two best defensive players, in on those 1 on 1 battles.
The Return of the Wildhorse: The Broncos brought this out against the Patriots because they struggled defending and had success early on. Similarly the Colts struggled vs. the Dolphins Wildcat. Therefore I expect Knowshon Moreno to line up in Wildhorse early and often. Sometimes they will run out of this formation. However, sometimes Kyle Orton will motion back under center. This forces the defense to adjust but as seen in the Patriot game many times the defensive adjustment leaves a seem in the middle for the TE to exploit. Expect Tony Sheffler to factor heavily in the game plan especially since the Cover 2 can be susceptible to the seam pattern of TE's.
Three Tight Ends: The Broncos have used this off and on to power the running game this season but my rationale for using it dates back to 2007. Mike Shanahan used the set and zone blocking to run over the Colts. We lost the game 38-20 but at one point we were up 10-0 because of the strength of our running game. We have gone back to being the best zone blocking team in the league and I truly believe we can dominate in this area.
4 Man Pressure: The Colts have allowed just 10 sacks all season but 3 of them came vs. the 49ers. I wouldn't blitz Payton Manning a whole lot. Show blitz or zone blitz is fine, but no all out blitz. Players like Dumervil, Reid, Holliday, and Ayers are just going to have to win 1 on 1 battles. Pressure with 4, move the front seven around so Peyton doesn't know which 4 are coming. Move Dumervil up and down the line of scrimmage.
Single Bailey on Wayne: The assumption is that Bailey and Goodman don't switch places. Time to throw a wrinkle and just let Bailey blanket Wayne the entire game. Double Dallas Clark with Dawkins over top and Woodyard or Barrett underneath and then let Goodman cover Collie or Garcon, whichever is in the game.
Finally, I believe the Broncos can win and if so this will be there greatest victory since the 2005 divisional game vs. the Patriots. The Colts are a great opponent which makes the game exciting. Much respect to them because this strategy I laid out will be hard to execute due to their speed and intelligence. Go Broncos.