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A Special Time with a team that can win it all

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Growing up in Denver I have come to realize how special and rare these type of Bronco seasons are. Don’t get me wrong. The Broncos have had several good seasons since I started watching football as a kid in the early 80’s. I’m not really speaking to regular season so much as a season with 13 wins and home field advantage throughout the playoffs. This is the recipe for playing in the Super Bowl and even winning it.

Denver’s Best Seasons of the at least 13 wins in Super-Bowl Era

Year

W

L

Coaches

Passing

Rushing

Receiving

1998

14

2

Shanahan

Elway

Davis

Smith

2012

13

3

Fox

Manning

McGahee

Thomas

2005

13

3

Shanahan

Plummer

Anderson

Smith

1996

13

3

Shanahan

Elway

Davis

Sharpe

1984

13

3

Reeves

Elway

Winder

Watson

You can count on one hand the amount of times Denver has won 13 regular season games. It only happens about once per decade. The 96 and 98 seasons were during that amazing run though Denver messed up the first chance at home field against Jacksonville.

No 1 Seed Matters

Even though it is not a guarantee and rarely to both number one seeds from each conference makes the Super Bowl the odds are really good. The first thing is to have a first round bye. Winning two games is much easier than winning three games. Out of the last 10 Super Bowls a number one seed has been represented in eight.

Year

AFC Seed

NFC Seed

2002

1

2

2003

1

3

2004

2

1

2005

6

1

2006

3

1

2007

1

5

2008

2

4

2009

1

1

2010

4

6

2011

1

4

Built to make it to the Super Bowl

This team is better than the 2005 team and closer to the 1996 team. The 2005 Team that was the second seed and ended up hosting the AFC Championship, was more like the recent New York Jets teams or Baltimore Ravens teams that were in recent AFC championship games. Their strengths were running the ball and playing a hard-nosed blitz heavy defense. Jake Plummer only had one game over 300 yards passing in the regular season. The problem with that formula is that you can’t beat a team like the offensive teams that have been showing up in the AFC Championship. The Jets and the Ravens have tried that formula the past four years and have fallen short. They face both the Colts with Manning and the Patriots with Brady, and the Steelers twice. None of those teams scored more than 20 points in the AFC Championship game. The Steelers were very good offensive teams with a top QB and had the big defense.

Denver has the offensive firepower to dual it out with Tom Brady and the Patriots. We have Peyton Manning. That is where we are headed.

Facing the Patriots at Home

The Divisional round is an afterthought in my mind. No team, but maybe the Colts have the ability to shock the world and knock off the Patriots or Broncos at home. Both teams are too strong on both sides of the ball. It will come down to Manning beating Brady in the AFC Championship. The nice thing is Denver is at home.

Denver is better suited to outscore the Patriots this time around. A lot of the issues that Manning and the offense had early in the season, was the chemistry and rhythm with the receivers. The other main issue was the struggle between OC Mike McCoy trying to insert his game plan and letting Manning run the show. McCoy is very run heavy and predictable in his play calling. Early in games Denver would fall behind often because of McCoy play selection. Now you can see that McCoy is getting out of the way and letting Manning do his thing which is calling the play at the line of scrimmage.

So in short this will be a fun ride and should end with Denver planning in the last game of the season. Live it up Bronco fans. Brag, blog, and soak up the excellence of your football team. It only comes around once in a while.

This is a Fan-Created Comment on MileHighReport.com. The opinion here is not necessarily shared by the editorial staff of MHR

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