Chances are, Bronco fans won't get to witness this at Sports Authority Field in Week 14. Jay Cutler lays on the field after losing his helmet during the game against the San Diego Chargers at Soldier Field on November 20, 2011 in Chicago. (Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images)
In light of recent events this weekend, namely the thumb injury to former Bronco Quarterback Jay Cutler, I thought it might be worth taking a gander at the schedule to see a damage report on upcoming Bronco opponents and how that could shape their overall record. I will list my findings below and then you can vote your opinion on what you think the outcome will be just from an injury perspective.
While the injury gremlin has been somewhat kinder this year to the Broncos as opposed to recent seasons, it has moved on (I hope permanently) to other teams. The Kansas City Chiefs lost their starting quarterback Matt Cassell and the Oakland Raiders just carted off Darrius Heyward-Bey last night. The San Diego Chargers have had a slew of injuries as well and while I don't wish harm upon anyone, injuries are part of the game.
Here are the remaining opponents the Broncos face.
- Week 12 Sun. Nov. 27 at San Diego Chargers
Polk was a CFA two years ago and attended Training Camp with the Broncos. He was cut on August 1st. The Chargers picked him up and he was considered a longshot to make the squad. Scafe was another CFA that probably could have seen playing time had he not been hurt, if only because San Diego took a huge risk with the eternally injured Bob Sanders, who everyone but AJ Smith knew would be a waste of money. Jonas Mouton showed potential in Training Camp, but was having difficulty adapting to the NFL speed. The biggest health impacts for the Chargers have been the injuries to starters Kaeding, Sanders, Cooper, English and Dielman. Losing five starters is borderline drastic.
More recently, Backup Center and current Left Guard Scott Mruczkowski sustained a concussion in Sunday's loss to the Bears. Starting Guard Louis Vasquez (high ankle sprain) didn't even suit up and Left Tackle Marcus McNeill is in danger of missing the rest of the season with a neck injury. To say the San Diego O-Line is decimated would be an understatement and all these injuries make what at the beginning of the season look like a problem, now appear winnable.
- Week 13 Sun. Dec. 4 at Minnesota Vikings
"I'm going to try to get back as fast as I can and God willing, I'll be up and ready to run this weekend."
- Week 14 Sun. Dec. 11 Chicago Bears at Home
- Week 15 Sun. Dec. 18 New England at Home
"It could affect his release because the triceps tendon attaches right there, you have all your forearm muscles there, your extensors and flexors to hold a football. If you get a bone bruise, he'd accommodate his release a little bit to accommodate the bone bruise.
- Week 16 Sat. Dec. 24 at Buffalo Bills
The Bills lost 11 players to Injured Reserve this season. Defensive End Reggie Torbor (Shoulder), Rookie CFA Running Back Bruce Hall, Wide Receiver Marcus Easley (Illness), Wide Receiver Roscoe Parrish (Left ankle), Defensive Back Jon Corto (Shoulder), Wide Receiver Felton Huggins (Head), Outside Linebacker Shawne Merriman (Achilles), Nose Tackle Kyle Williams (Left foot), Center Eric Wood (Torn right ACL), Defensive Back Terrence McGee (knee surgery) and their 2011 6th round Pick Linebacker Chris White (Knee).
Torbor was lost during Training Camp and I'm sure the Bills are missing his 35 Tackle yearly average. Easley is a 4th round pick from 2010. He was pit on IR because of a heart ailment, which is possibly serious. Parrish, you may recall, returned his first punt return of the season for a touchdown against the Broncos in 2007. He is a 4th receiver type and speedy return man. Corto and Huggins haven't played all year and Williams hasn't done enough to be missed, but Merriman, Wood and McGee were starters. white was relegated to Special Teams and will compete for a job next year after tearing an ACL.
- Week 17 Sun. Jan. 1 Kansas City at Home
Personally, I like to take the games week to week and try not to look ahead. But I realize that some people really enjoy doing projections. So the question today is, after looking at the injury perspective of the future Bronco opponents, how many of these games do you (honestly) think Denver will win?
What record will the Broncos have over the next 6 games?
1-5 (7 votes)
2-4 (32 votes)
3-3 (175 votes)
4-2 (357 votes)
5-1 (144 votes)
715 total votes