Am I ever going to win the weekly prediction contest? Oh well, as long as the Broncos keep on keeping on. Superman got supermanned plenty of times yesterday. It was just awesome to see. My favorite had to be Big Vick doing the Mile High Salute after his Superman pose. What I liked most was seeing the salute from a DT. Not often do you get to see it from that position and the celebration fit the big guy perfectly. Kudos to him for earning an opportunity to do so. 2 sacks on the day and I think our pass rush from the interior is a.o.k. Cam could never get comfortable in the pocket and it lead to a shark frenzy in the backfield.
They've Got the Fever
Even though this was just the Carolina Panthers, the defense showed how far they have come. On a day where the offense "struggled", it really wasn't necessary for them to even play. The defense/special teams outscored the Carolina offense by themselves. It was at the point that I wanted to see our defense out on the field more than I wanted to see Peyton Manning and the offense. It was that kind of day. 7 sacks, 2 interceptions with one returned for a TD, a punt return for a TD, a safety, 7 passes defensed and 10 tackles for a loss! When was the last time a Denver defense was so productive in a single game? These numbers look more like a 3 game stretch. Well, Sunday marked the day that the defense proclaimed themselves championship caliber. It's STILL getting better!
Von Miller took this game very seriously. Though Cam was selected 1st overall, Von made an argument that he was very much worthy of the number 1 pick. Apparently Cam talked a little too much trash during the offseason regarding this matchup with Von and the Broncos. Well Cam, time to put up or shut up. Von was a man on fire yesterday. He moved within .5 a sack of the NFL lead and he ripped away the lead for TFL with 4 on the day. These numbers are reminiscent of the greatest LB to every play.....LT. I'm not saying Von is that good, right now, but the potential is there. If he stays healthy and keeps improving, he's in line to be mentioned as G.O.A.T. I don't believe ever seeing a Bronco defender ever be this disruptive....and he's only in his second year!
It's a Very Special Team
I haven't watched enough of the league to know the answer to this, but do the Broncos have THE best punt coverage team in the NFL? Here's a telling stat, 125 to 10. That's punt return yards on the day. Just looking at that usually overlooked stat, tells me the Broncos dominated the field position. Tough to win games when the whole field is against you. Really love how our special teams have played all year. Thank the Texans for gambling and letting Trindon Holliday touch the waiver wire. Once I heard they had cut the kid, I was all over getting him in an Orange jersey. There were plenty of fans here that were content with Jim Leonhard making the secure catch and run sideways for 3 yards. I wanted the game breaker and I think we've found him. It pretty much completed the team. The offense is clicking, the defense is rising to the top and the special teams are now a threat to score. This has got to be the most complete team since, oh, I don't know. Did the championship teams even have a good special teams?
The Ayers Has Arrived
Well, he's been here for years but he just never performed to the fans' expectations. He's always been solid, just not 1st round good. Looks like he wanted to prove to his coaches that he's worthy of that starting position that he lost. Isn't it great to see what competition can do. Some players welcome the challenge and make themselves improve while others fold when the competition gets too hot...(ehem, Jets) Robert was A BEAST on Sunday. He even pulled out a finesse move that he's never shown capable of doing. Constantly bringing pressure and disrupting the backfield. He accounted for 5 tackles, 1 sack, 2 TFL, 2 deflected passes and 2 QB hits. He even pressured Dalton last week while being double teamed that lead to Champ's first INT on the season. Robert has been making plays this season, it's just he hasn't had the reps to really stand out. Hopefully Doom isn't too hurt, but Robert now gets his chance. Thank you John Elway for putting together such a deep roster. We didn't even break stride with Doom's injury.
Tony Carter does it again. 2 TDs already this season and he was on the verge of being cut in preseason. I wasn't very high on this kid but I was dead wrong. I didn't get to see enough of him to make a sound judgment. He didn't really flash much in preseason games. Was mostly called for penalties than interceptions. It's mind boggling that he's been passed around the league on practice squads. I'm going to go ahead and say our coaching staff is really excelling. Elway has put together a staff that is really working well together. I just can't say that it's coincidence that so many of our younger players are playing at such a high level. Higher than they ever have. I mean Robert Ayers has been around for years and has started for this team, but he looks so much better this year. Again, thank you John Elway. And hey Tracey Porter, are you familiar with the Dime package?
Where Are Those Charger Towels When You Need Them?
It's to the point that I'm not sure if Willis McGahee will fumble or not on every carry. Moreno was burned at the stake for fumbling. Yea, we get the whole, "Willis has produced" defense. I gave him a pass until now. 2 fumbles!?! Fumble twice against a good team and it may cost us the game. Kind of like the Patriots game. Willis shouldn't get a pass anymore. He hasn't even been productive the past two weeks. These fumbles are unacceptable and it's not right that he keeps getting a pass while Knowshon is undressed every week. Sauced has ability to make plays too. He fumbled once and he's been inactive ever since. I'm interested to see how the coaches treat this reoccurring mishap. Are there favorites on this team?
Same Old Song
I sound like a broken record. Another Tight End goes for 100 yards. It was actually Greg Olsen's first 100 yard game of his 6 year career. And he did it with 2 of his 3 TDs on the year. I've come to the conclusion that I need to draft the opposing TE for my fantasy team. I need to take advantage of insider knowledge of how bad we play against TE's. Unfortunately, Antonio Gates is already taken. Forget the DL, TE defense is our biggest weakness. Actually, the DL is becoming a team strength. Who would have guessed it? What if only Ty Warren was still healthy....hmmm
Our Dline was eating greedy this weekend. The Panthers invested heavily in 3 RB contracts with Stewart, Williams and Tolbert. Well all those millions accounted for 43 total yards. Money well spent Carolina. I'm so glad we didn't go after the high priced D'Angelo Williams. He's not an elite RB, but he's getting paid like one. Our weakest point on offense is RB, but it was the right move sticking with what we have. I still don't believe we are using our RBs to their fullest ability, especially when I see Ball out there every week. Moreno would be great in the passing game, but he must have cursed off our coaches to be so deep in the dog house.
Little Quick Notes:
- My heart stopped as I watched Von's legs get rolled. I usually focus on certain players for each snap. So relieved to see it wasn't so serious.
- Love seeing all the young guns contributing to the team. I notice Nate Irving constantly making special teams plays along with Omar Bolden. Love the development.
- Steve Smith was held to just 1 catch on the day. Great bounce back game from Champ. If it wasn't for those two Bear corners, Champ would be All-Pro
- It was surprising to see that the Broncos were 2nd in converting 3rd and short situations. Awesome feeling not seeing so many 3 and outs.
Well, the winning streak continues. We started out slow this game on offense which only proves we still have a lot to improve on. Which is awesome to know we can still get better than what we've seen. Next are the Sandy Ego Sparklers. Norv Turner is on the home stretch. The finish line is fast approaching. I don't see how we lose this game. They may have some confidence after being up 24-0 in the first half of the first game, but they're going to need mental block because they still lost by double digits. I guess it's all they can feed off of at this point. Denver is red hot and the Chargers are reeling. Let's keep it moving Broncos and let's get healthy for the stretch run. Go Broncos!