A game in the preseason isn't about the final score.
In the fourth and final preseason game, the final score is even less important. Week Four of the preseason is about the guys on the bubble making their last stand for a regular season roster.
And boy did the Broncos' backups shake up the pecking order tonight.
Second year undrafted wide receiver Gerell Robinson led all receivers with five catches for 99 yards and a touchdown; quarterback Zac Dysert started the game with a perfect 158.3 passer rating; running back Lance Ball took a two yard dumpoff 69 yards down the field on a brilliantly executed screen play. Not one of these players were on my projected 53-man roster, but all made a case to make the team Thursday night in preseason action.
Peyton Manning was running down the sideline like an excited rookie as Ball ran that 69-yard screen.— MileHighReport (@MileHighReport) August 30, 2013
For those keeping score (what a silly thing to do), the Broncos and Cardinals battled back and forth all night long, seeing a tie score of 10-10 at halftime and a handful of lead changes. The Cardinals ended victorious, succeeding at a two-point attempt with five minutes left in the fourth quarter to "defeat" the Denver Broncos 32-24.
The Broncos finish the preseason with a 2-2 "record."
Other impressive players tonight include cornerback Kayvon Webster, whose two personal foul penalties are only excused because they were awesome, and linebacker Lerentee McCray. Unfortunately (that word doesn't quite do it justice), the undrafted rookie McCray left the field in the third quarter with a serious-looking ankle injury. He had notched three tackles, a sack, and a forced fumble to that point; he was on the fast track to the 53-man roster. Now his immediate status, and future, are in question.
Overall it was a fun preseason game though. None of the sloppy football that often plagues Week Four preseason games. Brock Osweiler and Zac Dysert both finished with passer ratings in the 90's.
Fourth preseason games are usually dreadful and sloppy, but this has been a solid, entertaining game from start to finish.— MileHighReport (@MileHighReport) August 30, 2013
The next 48 hours in Dove Valley will be very interesting.