Another week, another victory. Another victory, more grumbling from Broncos fans.
Come on people! Get it together! The majority of comments I've seen on this very site consist of more whining and moaning than not only Grumpy Old Men, but Grumpier Old Men.
Folks, this is the NFL. No game is a gimmie. Every W has to be earned. We just beat the Chargers at home for the first time in seven years, or whatever that ridiculous stat
is was. We pulled a season sweep on the Chargers, and just about cremated Phyllis. Reports of his ashes being spotted floating around the Port of San Diego have been coming in all morning. Some Norv and AJ in there too, I'm pretty sure. We've basically secured the division before we've even had a chance to get fat on turkey. And we're bitching about it!
Picture me with a starched white dress shirt, a pocket protector full of pens, and 2-inch thick glasses reading these quotes with an excessively whiny, nasally voice while I make fun of things.
"We should have been ready for that onside kick, there is absolutely no way we can win in the playoffs making those kinds of errors." *Pushes oversized glasses back up nose with index finger and blinks repeatedly.
"Ahem, too many dropped passes. Additionally, I crunched the numbers and the expected points value of choosing to kick a long field goal instead of going for the first down just don't add up." *Grimaces at the realization of a busted pen leaking in my shirt pocket. Realize I have a pocket protector and everything is good. Excitement.
You get the idea. I propose a new rule: If we win a game, whether it's against the '85 Bears or the '12 "Chiefs", we act damn happy about said win. Sound good? Good.
Related note: This rant was more for my own reminder than everyone else's. I complain and search for errors as much as anyone, so I'm just trying to keep things in perspective and remind myself, "This is a great game and I should enjoy it fully!".
This is what Mile High should be screaming when PFM throws a pass to the Slot Machine. You guessed it, that's one 36 year old throwing darts to another 36 year old. I never cease to be amazed by these two guys getting it done at this age. Here's a scary thought... How different would our season look right now without the contributions of one Brandon Stokely? How many big 3rd down conversions has he stepped up for, without even mentioning his touchdowns?
Obviously still spry as a gymnast.
So the news just broke that Willis McGahee tore his MCL and fractured a leg yesterday. He'll be out 6-8 weeks. Not. Good.
Now, we have to hope that Hillman can continue to improve his game and get stuff done. The much-maligned Lance Ball actually had a good day yesterday with a semi-dynamic looking long run. He came across the front of Manning to stonewall a blocker on an important down. Hopefully those two can continue to produce.
However, this is the part where we cue the Rocky music and Knowshon Moreno enters stage left, rip roarin' and ready for redemption. It's time big guy... You've been locked in the dog house this season. You entered that dog house like a cocker spaniel with it's tail between it's legs. Emerge a foaming-at-the-mouth Doberman ready to seek vengeance on an unsuspecting mailman. When I put it that way it sounds easy, amiright?
Checking in with the Neighbors
I figured it would be fun to visit the oppositions' SB Nation site every week and pick out some quotes from their fanbase during or after the game. I will generally be looking for tidbits regarding the Broncos, but will also unashamedly seek out hilarious/angry/depressed comments specifically when those emotions are directly caused by the Good Guys. Let's get to it...
The guys over at Bolts from the Blue appear to be very self-centered and were mostly focused on being angry at their entire franchise from the GM, to the Head Coach, to the "Quarterback", all the way down to Cindy who sells overpriced unhealthy food at the stadium. This made it hard to cull any quotes referencing the Broncos, but I tried.
"Von Miller untouched. Pretty much sums up this game. Norv should get canned for being a sh*%#y coach, AJ should get canned for this O-Line."
This guy is clearly a smart football fan. He recognizes that letting the most dangerous defensive player in the league prance around in your backfield is not a reliable way to win a football game. He also summarizes the state of the franchise in very short order. Well done, sir.
"To be fair, Von Miller has made a LOT of Tackles in this league look bad."
Again, well done.
"State of the Chargers. Be lucky to win another game this year. That is bad. Open your eyes Spanos family."
Concise. Prophetic. Pure gold. Go Broncos!
On second thought, I'm a Grumpy Old Man
Please disregard the opening to this post where I berated our community as a whole for being a bunch of Negative Nancies. I'm going to be just that real quick.
1. Mr. Fox - Please grow a pair. You have the best and smartest quarterback of all time on your roster. When the down and distance dictate, you have to go for it. When does the down and distance dictate this action, you ask? Any time we're on the other side of that large logo in the middle of the field. Don't punt. Don't kick field goals. And let's go ahead and throw those overstuffed advanced stats out the window. On a purely emotional level, watch the reaction of defensive players when they give up a first down on 4th down. It's deflating. Now watch the offense. It's inflating. That's Mathematics, folks. Or maybe Science, but just don't question it. Note: I love me some John Fox. So complaints like this from me are like me getting after my favorite uncle for farting at the dinner table. The attacks stem from a place of love and respect.
2. Mike McCoy / Peyton Manning - Here is a large beef I have with our game-plans and play-calling: Where are the quick hit slants from our large and dynamic #1 and #2 receivers? We have two elite-talent level wideouts running around out there, use em'. How many times did we see Manning complete quick slant after quick slant to Wayne and Harrison in Indy? A billion thousand times? Where are those routes to DT and Decker? These types of plays seem to work best in an up-tempo offense. Which brings me around full circle to another complaint. When has our offense looked the most confident and dangerous? When we're running the no-huddle, hurry up offense. Where was that yesterday? We have to push the pace to keep defenses off kilter, we must force them to adjust to what we're doing. On some level, I feel like our wide receiver routes are stagnant. I don't know if that comes down to the route-running ability of the players, or the play design, or just pure good defense, but it's something I hope the team can continue to improve upon and get this unit ramped up and dominating come playoff time.
3. I watched the game on an extremely crappy Broncos feed connected to my TV. Thanks a bunch DirecTV for blacking out the Broncos two weeks in a row while I rely on you for my Broncos viewing pleasure. I also fully expect to be blacked out for the third week in a row when Arrowhead fails to sell out. Remind me why we pay $3.2 million dollars a season for this nonsense? I have a dream, a dream that these asinine black-out and locally televised rules will evaporate as early as next season. A luffabo can dream, can't he?
You Were a Good Bronco Yesterday:
1. I've decided to put up a "Reserved for Von Miller" parking sign in the #1 slot for the next decade, where I will firmly place him every week. This seems like a safe play because he has a 97.3% chance of being the best player on the field every week, league wide. Seriously, no one is playing football at a higher level than Von right now. He has already leap-frogged the fantastic J.J. Watt for DPOY, and should be firmly within the Top 5 in the discussion for MVP, along with our very own Peyton Manning. To my eyes, he looks destined to break the single season record for sacks (22.5). He has 7 sacks in the last 3 games, and that's with several close calls. With the teams left on the schedule and the insane numbers he's been putting up as of late, approaching 30 sacks doesn't seem outside the realm of possibility. Maybe you guys can help me here: I've been trying to locate the single-season record for most tackles-for-loss and can't locate that number anywhere. I feel certain that Von is already fairly close to that number, and would love to know for sure.
"Pardon me, Phyllis. Cremation in progress."
2. D.J Williams - We've been worried about the middle linebacker position for a while here. Could it be that DJ is that guy? He made a great play by knifing through the line and stopping the running back for a loss on a crucial third down. He looks to be in shape and focused. I saw Fox quoted this morning saying he is happy with the shape DJ is in, and it is obvious he's been working his butt off while away from the team. With a (finally) solid supporting cast around him, I feel that we might be getting a high-level player for free. DJ is still young and should have plenty of miles left on those tires. Can we sit pat on the position and allow DJ and Nate Irving to handle the Mike duties in the future? That could be that case, and if so, it opens us up to improve the team in other areas moving forward.
3. The rest of the defense - Yes, Champ and Carter got burned a few times yesterday. We can chalk some of that up to our decision to play prevent defense to close out the game, but you'd still like to see more pressure put on the receiver to make those catches. Some of those were simply very good catches by a talented wide receiver in Denario Alexander. Any time your team can completely dominate another for the majority of a football game, you have to give the entire unit credit. Big Vick continues his run of impressive play. Justin Bannan never fails to contribute. Derek Wolfe (ecstatic to see you're OK) does work. Even Malik Jackson applied some pressure yesterday. Chris Harris gobbled up Eddie Royal. Woodyard was an absolute monster, as usual. Nate Irving showed some quick-twitch speed in blocking a punt, and I'm still excited to see what he can bring in the future. Trevathan was lights out, per the usual. Robert Ayers put in a solid performance, and I think it is safe to say that we can count on him to play high-level football for us from here on out. Doom showed pure toughness and determination by coming into the game while still dinged up and making an impact. That was a beautiful strip sack.
Since Von is one of those that likes to wear funny glasses and wear small backpacks and whatnot, why not give him one of these?
4. Peyton Manning - How great is it when your quarterback has an "off-day" and still puts up 270 yards passing and 3 TD's? This great:
5. DT - For yet another gorgeous big man ballerina tip-toe job in the end-zone for a touchdown. In the future, I'm going to abbreviate that last sentence and just go with that. So, DT had yet another GBMBTTJITEZFATD. Remember that.
Looking forward to
the Buccaneers game next week against the Daunting Chiefs
So that's me right there ^ with my hand raised, ready to take on the Kansas City Chiefs! Seriously, I feel like I could step in and contribute next week. I once ran a 6.7 40, and regularly bench press 135 pounds over 15 times! That's a big plate on either side of a big metal bar, folks! I mean, these guys are bad. Like, goodness gracious let them pack it in and go home bad. So bad, their own fans are turning into Raiders fans.
To top it all off, their coach looks like this:
And makes in-game adjustments at about the same pace that big guy would.
As has become my habit, I will now enter the mind of a Chiefs "player" and prognosticate what happens next week.
This week, it's Right Tackle Eric Winston, who looks like this:
"OK, here we go. This Von Miller is pretty intense, I've got to bring my A-Game. Solid base, good feet, slow him down with a hand-punch and then control his movement. Ride him outside, and don't fall for..."
Thought interrupted, Winston turns around to see whoever is playing quarterback that day lying in a supine and pretzel-like position in the backfield, with Von Miller doing some crazed chicken-dance over his twitching body.
"Wait, wait, wait, how did he get back there? Is he Neo? That's OK, we'll just rotate in our next horiffiocre (that's a mix of horrendous and mediocre, Eric's a clever guy, I found out) signal-caller and go from there. OK, Stanzi, let's do this."
Winston breaks the huddle, enters his stance, and looks up to find Elvis Dumervil instead of Von standing across from him.
"TIMEOUT! What is this madness? I can't be expected to deal with this guy too! They need to send me a tight end to chip these guys, and a running back behind me as extra support. This is like an AA meeting, I need constant and steady support out here in these situations!"
By the time Romeo waddles out to discuss things with Winston and let him know that it's OK for a right tackle to call timeouts because they most assuredly had good intentions, the timeout is already winding down to an end and they're back at the line of scrimmage in what felt like a fleeting 13 seconds.
"Crap, I didn't have a chance to tell Coach that I need 2 extra blockers on my side. Oh well, I got this, I'm a big old guy. Dumervil, let's see what you've got."
After being run over by a bull-rush from Dumervil, pushed back and on top of his own quarterback for a sack, Winston finds the strength to stand up.
"This is my nightmare! This is my nightmare! How can I get out of this? That was two plays, I can't possibly keep doing this for an entire game."
Light-bulb thought bubble ignited, Winston unexpectedly flops to the ground, flailing and alternately grabbing at knees, ankles, and elbows in apparent pain and serious injury.
"Is this working? I sure hope so... It looks like DJ Williams is standing next to Von where I should be. Yeah, I'm done."
Sounds about right to me! Go get em' boys!