One game left on the Week 15 slate, and a big game it is indeed for the Broncos when the Bengals visit the Colts. Even with that result hanging out there like boxers on a clothesline there are some things we do know. Let's take a look --
Broncos Now Control Their Own Destiny -- Thanks to the Chargers 20-9 win over Kansas City the Broncos now control their season. Win the next two games and they are in, for sure, and most likely as the #5 seed, which right now would get us a trip to Foxboro to face the Patriots. The Broncos own all tie-breakers at this point, and by beating the Bengals next week would take that one as well, even if Cincinnati beats the Colts tomorrow. As bad as the losing streak was, all you can ask for heading into Week 16 is control over your own fate and the Broncos have that.
Jay Cutler Is Our Best Chance To Win, Now -- The best chance for the Broncos to get to Miami and Super Bowl XLI is with Jay Cutler under center. Period. That throw he made on the TD pass to Javon Walker, 65 yards, across the field, into double coverage, brought back memories of #7 no doubt. Like Elway, Cutler has total confidence in his arm. What was even more impressive was how he handled the two drives after Bronco miscues. In both instances the Broncos were able to put points on the board. The fumble by Bell that gave the Cardinals a TD, and his own bad throw had no lasting effect on Cutler or the offense, something Jake Plummer had a big problem with. Elway made plenty of bad throws and bone-headed plays but is remembered for his mental toughness and making the plays when it mattered the most. Jay Cutler is on his way for being known for the same reasons.
Just Get Into The Dance, Becuase The AFC Is Wide Open -- The Pittsburgh Steelers needed a win on the final day of the season last year just to get into the playoffs. They beat Detroit in a tough game, and the rest is history. There is something to be said for having must win games start in mid-December. It is tough to turn the switch off and on at will. The Broncos are much like the Steelers. They have to win now, which means when they do get to the playoffs they will have been in preesure games for 4 weeks. You couple that with how every other team in the AFC is playing and truly anything can happen. None of the teams in the AFC reall scare me and all are very beatable. Sure, the Chargers have won 8 in a row but Philip Rivers is a mistake waiting to happen, and Marty is still Marty and will definitely tone down the offense in the playoffs. Jacksonville can't put two good games in a row together. New England has wins against Detroit and Houston sandwiched around losses to the Jets and Dolphins. Indy is the worst team in Super Bowl era history against the run. If the Broncos can start playing solid football on both sides of the ball who knows what can happen.
The Future Is Bright, Very Bright -- Watching today's game, I couldn't help but feel giddy about the future. Cutler to Walker, Cutler to Scheffler, Cutler to Marshall. All three sound beautiful to my ears, and all three are going to be Denver Broncos for a long time. All four players are making huge contributions, and the return of the Tight End to the Denver gameplan has really opened up the outside for Rod Smith who is also starting to see more balls his way. The Broncos offense is starting to get it together at the right time, and with 2 home games remaining to close out the year I feel great about the short term and long term outlook for the Orange and Blue.