As much as I'm excited for the Monday Night Football game between the Broncos and Raiders - and believe me, I'm very excited - I found myself getting really into the Packers/Saints game on Thursday night. It was a battle of two outstanding quarterbacks at the height of their respective careers, along with a number of other players who are carving a niche for themselves in this league. Throughout the night, I was finding it difficult focusing on my impending Laplace Transforms quiz the next morning because of this outstanding quarterback duel.
Although, the game wasn't exactly Bronco related, there were a number of Bronco connections to be made while watching this contest.
Did anybody else enjoy watching Darren Sproles run rampant as much as I did? All the years of shredding the Broncos on swing passes and special teams left me with a bad taste in my mouth. However, now that he's in a completely different division, I kind of enjoyed watching him. Thank goodness he no longer plays the Broncos twice a year.
Apparently, I wasn't the only one who was glad to see Sproles leave the AFC West.
I repeat... I sure am happy Daron Sproles isn't in the AFC west.. Lol
I'm sure Robert Ayers isn't the only person in Denver who is glad to see him gone, either. It was strange seeing Darren Sproles in a Saints jersey, but I will admit that it made me smile.
Another interesting thing that caught my eye was Aaron Rodgers. Of course, it's easy to pinpoint the winning quarterback and praise him for what was an outstanding performance. He is able to recognize blitzes, identify coverages, find receivers, and throw the ball accurately and with great velocity. If that's not the oversimplification of the decade, I don't know what is.
But in all seriousness, this is the type of quarterback play that the Broncos have been missing. We have a team captain, in Kyle Orton, but do we have a team leader? Can he go out there and take command of the offense? Further more, can he go out there and take command of the defense? That's an entirely new level of proficiency. Aaron Rodgers can do it. Last night, the Saints could do nothing right on defense. They blitzed and Aaron went with his hot route for a short gain (often ran upfield for yards after catch, as well). The Saints also sent 3 men to rush the passer and dropped the rest into coverage, so Aaron moved around in the pocket long enough to find the hole in the coverage before slinging the ball where only his receiver can get it. That's the difference between a good quarterback and a great one. The ability to process information quickly and correctly.
I don't think we have a quarterback on the roster that is anywhere close to being a field commander of that quality, right now. We have 3 quarterbacks on the roster, but none of them are Aaron Rodgers or Drew Brees.
But then I thought about the season preview that I helped do for SBNation Denver. I predicted an improved season, starting out 3-0, finishing with 9 wins and 7 losses. Not having a field general at quarterback doesn't change my prediction. We have enough talent to beat a bunch of teams. I don't expect playoffs, but I expect improvement in the win column.
So, while the fan inside me wants the Broncos to win it all, this year, the realist inside me says that it won't happen. We are talented in a number of spots, but we don't have the field general that can put up 40 points a game through the air. We'll get there, though. Whether it's through developing quarterbacks we have or going to get one from elsewhere, John Elway will not settle for poor quarterback play.
But if Kyle Orton, Tim Tebow or Brady Quinn turn a major corner and take us to the playoffs and beyond, I will be more than happy to eat crow in January.
Whatever the case... Go Broncos!
Only 3 more days until Monday Night Football against the Raiders!!!