Last night the Broncos got beat by a team with more talent, a pro-bowl QB on a mission and a Hall of Fame coach with 2 weeks to prepare and a roster fighting 2 years of playoff frustration. The better team won. Like usually happens in the playoffs the strengths and weaknesses of your roster show up in spades. With that in mind I am going to look at the Broncos' starters position by position and put each player in a category. The categories are of my own design and in my own humble opinion. I have coached at both the high school and small college levels, but I have also been around enough to know unlike the Ryan brothers, coaches are not always correct and there are a great deal of informed fans especially here at MHR.
1. Keeper- one of our building blocks
2. Good player but getting old- we need to find a replacement soon
3. Just a guy- not good not bad is he worth what we are paying him
4. Should be a back-up- the fact that he is starting show how many holes we have
5. Please replace this guy now- represents our weakest positions these players don't belong in the NFL
Let's begin with the Specialists- over-all a strength
Eddie Royal (PR) 2. (he is a 1 if he is not a full time receiver)
Special Teams review we have great kickers all we need is an electric returner, but they are hard to find. If we get a stud receiver Royal could be that guy but he would not be happy in that role.
Now for the defense better than last year but still a mid 20's defense with numerous holes we are a 9/9 team
Champ Bailey-1 until he shows signs of slowing down/ Best player on our team IMO
Andre Goodman-2/3 Goddie not quite a 2 but better than most fans think IMO
Brian Dawkins- one of my heros and hasn't played in a while I am afraid he has played his last game I would not mess with a neck at his age no rating.
Chris Harris-2 without the getting old part
Defense review- There are a lot of reasons we gave up 40+ points 5 times this year: we are terrible up the middle. Thomas and Bunkley played well but should be the back- ups who play their ass off just a few plays while starters rest. Joe Mayes looks good 1 out of 15 plays when he makes a big hit, but he can't cover, he doesn't even know he has arms because he NEVER wraps up and he has trouble getting off blocks and doesn't flow laterally well at all. Knowing how much respect I have for Brian Dawkins as a man and a player our safety play is the worst in the NFL by a very large margin. EFX had a pretty good first draft, and I think our team is under excellent leadership on all levels, but right now those 2 safeties look to be poor draft picks. My Priority list is MLB, DT, SS, FS..
Now for our Offense in many ways hard to evaluate but I will try.
Ryan Clady-1 although he did not have his best year I believe he is just getting healthy
Zane Beadles-2 without the getting old part better than just a guy
JD. Walton- 3 Gets beat A gap way too much
Chris Kuper-1 hope he heals fast
Orlando Franklin-1 his pass blocking will get better he has great feet and is a beast
Daniel Fells- 5 he is the best of a crop of horrible TE's all the good teams have weapons here we do not.
Demaryius Thomas- 1 Just starting to understand what a stud he can be
Eric Decker-3 sorry fans but he drops a lot of balls I so want to like him more but I have to be honest struggles to get separation
Eddie Royal- 3 once again sorry but not a stud receiver
Willis McGahee-2 what a good story.
Tim Tebow-1/4 he is my favorite player/ man in the NFL but he needs to learn to throw it much better I for one will not bet against it.
Offense Review This is a QB driven league; consequently, a big part of this team's offensive future depends on how much Tebow develops in the off season. For those that say he should have developed more in the first season they are correct to some extent, but I don't think the average fan has any idea how few reps a backup QB gets in the NFL. Once training camp is over a backup QB may get 50 plays of practice reps vs a defense the entire rest of the season. Boy does he need the OTA;s and every other practice he can get .IMHO he earned at least one more year. So the offensive needs are RB, TE, WR,
Wow ! It was a fun and unexpected ride once again the Broncos are relevant. Thanks EFX coach Fox and staff and players who gave our city their best effort. I look forward to reading your reactions to my humble evaluations.