We knew it was bound to happen. Lose a couple games and the haters come out and the rats jump from the listing bandwagon. The naysayers are out pounding their drums in full force. Then I browse KaptainKirk's Horse Tracks today to find a so called fan and blogger hoping for a Broncos' loss on Sunday. What in the hell has got into these people? This guy then goes on to classify the streak as luck. Really? That is a lot of games to rely on luck and I don't buy that. I suppose that it was bad luck that the Broncos lost all those close games in the first five weeks of the season? There was a lot more to it than luck in both instances. This team has hit a rough stretch, but their play thus far has been worthy of a berth in the tournament. What they do with that berth, should it be forthcoming, is not a forgone conclusion. Stranger things have happened in this league. As a fan, I am never willing to concede anything, especially a playoff berth.
The Broncos started the season at 1-4 and it couldn't be more bleak. We were never supposed to be here. Some fans kind of get a feeling that our team is crashing a dinner party at the White House wearing tuxedo t-shirts. Some fans are still having trouble reconciling the fact our team is playing meaningful games this late in the season. Some fans are still coming to grips with the fact that Tebow is the starter and Kyle Orton was released in a classy move by the maligned front office. Yes Bronco fans, it has been a roller coaster season. Situation normal for the past couple of seasons in Dove Valley. Some how, in the midst of this most recent turmoil, the Broncos found a way to string together enough wins to be relevant in late December. No matter how or why, this is a good thing for the Broncos fans and organization. Yes, this team still has some holes and limitations, but so does every other team in the league. If at the end of the season, the Broncos' record says they are worthy for a playoff appearance, that is all that matters. At least we know they will be there with a better record than the Seahawks had last season.
Looking towards the season finale with trepidation? That is understandable after the past couple of weeks. Try not to be too leary of this game though. Take it for what it is, win and we're in! How long has it been since we could say that? Seems like eons. Kyle Orton and the Chiefs find a way to beat the undefeated Packers and all of the sudden we should fear him? We know Kyle just as well or better than he knows this team. It really shouldn't come as a suprise to us that he found a way to beat the Pack, but then found a way to lose the Raider game with their playoff hopes still alive. That is his Modus Operandi. He does not do well in pressure situations. The Chiefs as a team have nothing left to play for this season, but Kyle has everything to play for in this game. You can bet that he is putting pressure on himself to perform at a high level in this game. This does not bode well for Kyle with what we know about him. He is going to try to force the issue. We need not worry about Kyle Orton, we have the tools to take care of him. This game Sunday is going to be tough, but no tougher than the rest of them. I hope the Broncos approach this game in the same manner that they approached the games in the beginning of the streak. Play loose and have fun for 60 minutes. Welcome Kyle back to Mile High in a manner befitting the symbol of Broncos futility. Pressure him and he will fold up like an empty billfold wallet.
Back to the folks hoping for a Broncos loss on Sunday. In order for the Broncos to miss the playoffs, not only do they have to lose, the Raiders have to win. If you are really hoping for this, how can you truly call yourself a Broncos fan? If that is what you are hoping for, you might want to switch colors now. I am appalled to hear anyone who claims to be a fan of the Broncos could ever hope for a Broncos loss and a Raiders win in the same breath. Where I come from, that is blasphemy in it's highest form. You don't tank games for the future or draft position, you play for today because there is no guarantee that tomorrow will ever come.
Don't fear the playoffs, Broncos faithful. Embrace them! It's time to start believing again!!