I am fully aware this is an exercise in futility. There is no way that anyone can truly know how our offense is going to look this season. After looking over MHR, ESPN, Bleacher Report and any other website that has any modicum of football coverage I have come to a conclusion. Either we are going to have one of the best offenses in the NFL next year, or our offense will be a cataclysmic disaster. So, this is my attempt to drop a single in center field. I tried very hard to leave my orange colored sunglasses off for this one, so I hope that shows. And there is an added bonus, I threw in a quasi depth chart for the skill positions. Free of charge. Lets jump....
I was really only going to predict total offensive numbers for our passing/rushing offense, but the quality of FanPosts in here challenged me to up my game. So I will not only have our total offensive numbers, but a break down for each player. Again, I work for a telephone company, not a statistician. So be gentle.
This also assumes that no one is hurt or gets traded and plays all 16 games. Without further ado.....
QB Brock Osweiler. Oh wait, sorry, that was the beginning of my 2016 Depth chart. My bad.
QB: Peyton Manning. 590 Att, 393 Comp, 66% 4200 yards, 30 TD's and 18 INT for a QB rating of 91.4.
I started with everyone who could catch a ball and added up those numbers. Then looked at his average comp % (66%) and figured how many attempts that would be. I did the same with yards. I ended up with what i have above. And it turns out, that is almost the exact numbers he put up in 2002. I didnt want to go crazy and throw him in the 5,000 yard derby due to his age, recovering arm strength, learning a new offense and receivers and Fox's propensity to run the ball. 4,200 yards may be a bit high considering all the factors, but it is Peyton Freaking Manning here.
Eric Decker: 80-1,040 7 TD's, 13 avg
I expect Decker to be a 3rd down machine. I can see him being the most targeted player on the team, since he has worked with Manning more than anyone else on the team this year and is a much better route runner than DT. And I did hear some reports that Manning wanted the Colts to draft Decker when he was in Indy. Interesting.
Demaryius Thomas: 65-1,105 9 TD's, 17 avg
DT will be targeted less, but has the physical tools to rack up some good YAC #s. I remember him making that Vikings CB look foolish down near the end zone last year, just locked him in place and went right by him. His route running and lack of polish is why I see him targeted less than Decker. But he will be a DC's nightmare, with his freakish combination of size, speed and jumping ability. If he improves his route running and consistency, he could be one of the best in the league in a couple years.
Andre Caldwell: 25-275 2 TD's, 11 avg
This is not a indication of his skill level, just the quality of players around him. And if people are wondering why I only went with an average of 11 yards per catch for a guy with so much speed, his career numbers are 9.5. Giving him an upgrade there due to the quality of the QB now throwing to him.
Brandon Stokley: 20-180 1 TD, 9 avg
I think he makes the squad more for his ability to teach our young WR's than for his on the field production. Still good numbers for a 36 year old guy. And maybe he will give us another tipped ball miracle.
Matthew Willis: 15-180 1 TD, 12 avg
I think his role on special teams will be much more significant than his contribution on offense. But he is a pretty good WR and if he is on the field he will usually be matched up with # 3 and 4 CB's, a battle he should win.
Jason Hill: 10-100 10 avg
Really thought about putting Robinson here as the 6th WR (not sure we keep 6) but Fox likes his veterans. This very well could also be Dell or Orton, but they went and signed Jason as FA. That makes me think he has the leg up. Hopefully Robinson can stick around on the PS and be called up next year when Stokley is gone.
Jacob Tamme: 50-475 4 TD, 9.5 avg.
I really wanted to put him in the 60-70 catch range, but with Joel and the WR corp, I think this is still a good season at TE. His familiarity with Manning is why I have him higher than Joel.
Joel Dreessen: 33-297 2 TD's, 9 avg
If not for the presence of Tamme on the roster, I could see him in the 60 catch range. But with Tamme and the others this is where I have him. He is bigger than Tamme so he could really make more of an impact with blocking and such.
Cornelius Ingram: 15-105, 7 avg.
Yes, I have bought into the preseason hype. Ingram has looked fairly explosive, but he is inconsistent and needs work as a blocker. There is a reason I have him ranked over the next TE though..
Virgil Green: 10-70, 7 avg.
Yep. I see the team moving on from Julius Thomas. Cant stay healthy, is not a great blocker and cant put together any kind of consistency. Virgil missing the first few games of the season is why I have Ingram catching more balls, but Virgil is a much better blocker and more physical, so he will probably get more PT than Ingram.
Willis McGhaee: 240 carries 1,080 yards and 8 TD's, 4.5 YPC. 18 catches 90 yards 5 avg.
I downgraded him a bit, just because he is a year older and the running game will not be option 1, 2 and 3. Still a great season for a 30+ RB with an slight injury-prone tag.
Lance Ball: 80 carries 320 yards and 4 TD's, 4.0 YPC. 12 catches 48 yards and 1 TD, 4 avg.
Ball is a workhorse, and I guy that I thought didn't belong on the roster. But Fox and Studesville have forgotten more than I will ever know about NFL RB's, so I defer to them and leave Ball on the roster.
Ronnie Hillman: 60 carries for 300 yards and 3 TD's, 5.0 YPC. 25 catches for 175 yards and 2 TD's 7 avg.
I think close to 500 yards total offense and 5 TD's is a pretty good season for a COP back taken in the 3rd round. I think his ceiling could be higher, but this is where I put him in his rookie year.
Chris Gronkowski: 35 carries for 122 yards, 1 TD and 3.5 YPC. 15 catches for 60 yards and 1 TD, 4 avg.
Thats right. No Moreno. I think Ball is too well liked by the team and Hillman is essentially assured of his spot as a fairly high pick. I contemplated putting 4 RB's on the roster, but with a QB like Manning I figured that extra roster spot would be better served at WR. Back to Gronk, 35 carries might seem like alot for a FB, He is a power runner and we all know how much McCoy likes the runs up the middle. 2 total TD's is pretty good for a lead blocking FB.
So there it is. 4,200 passing yards, 1,822 rushing yards. Based on last years numbers that would have our passing game ranked 8th overall, running game ranked 18th overall and Total offense ranked 11th overall. Also that would put us at 46 TD's scored which was good for 7th last year (not counting defensive TD, post for another day). I did not factor any rushing yards by Manning as I imagine the first time he runs out of the pocket the collective gasp from the Sports authority field will change the weather patterns in the surrounding states and he will be "discouraged" from doing that again. I hope you enjoyed and I am toying with the idea of putting one of these together for the defense. But only after I have recovered from this one. God Bless and Go Broncos!