Every glaring hole and issue of this team was magnified today. The line couldn't open up running lanes, the line commits costly penalties, Manning throws poorly under pressure, receivers drop easy passes.
Then the injuries started to pour in. First to Montee Ball who looked to come back too early from a groin injury. Then to Julius Thomas who was ruled out early with an ankle injury. Then an already thin and underperforming receiving corps (I'm looking at you Wes Welker) suffered yet another blow when Emmanuel Sanders was knocked out of the game early in the 3rd quarter with a concussion.
3rd down after 3rd down of questionable decision making by #18 coupled with poor coaching that started with John Fox and his misunderstanding of situational football and permeated to Jack Del Rio who continues to leave the middle of the field wide open with soft zone coverage doomed the team to wasted opportunities.
The Rams played well but this performance had all the fingerprints of a self-inflicted loss all over it.
These problems are real
In the long run perhaps this is the best thing that could have happened to the team. The Broncos have won enough just to pull the wool over the eyes of Broncos Country. The truth is this team hasn't had a quality win since week 1 and 2 against Indianapolis and Kansas City. Since then, they have made it a habit of beating inferior talent with mediocre efforts and teams who were severely shorthanded.
The offense has no balance. Against a blitzing and stunting front they ran empty set after empty set. The offense is nothing more than Manning chucking the ball down the field which goes poorly when he is pressured consistently.
On the defensive side of the ball, they allowed their 1st 100 rusher of the season and allowed journeyman nobody Shaun Hill to convert 3rd down after 3rd down.
On this day however, the buck this week stops with the offense that could not muster more than 7 points and a Special Teams unit that is incapable of flipping field position and too inept to make a long field goal.
If you want to know what's wrong with the Broncos, that's it in a nutshell. John Fox takes chances because he's too afraid of his kicker missing the kick.
This team offensively is complete finesse and struggles time and again when faced with a tougher challenge.
The issues we see now are very real and cannot be glossed over or dismissed.
The way it's looking in Kansas City, the Chiefs will pull into a 1st place tie with the Broncos in the west. The Patriots can breathe easy because no matter the outcome of tonight's game, they will not relinquish their position as the number 1 seed.
This team may be no better than a wildcard team. When the playoffs roll around, would you trust them to go on the road and win game after game en route to the super bowl? Me neither.
With all the noise Elway made in the offseason the Broncos are no closer to a championship than they were in February.
Some real changes must be made and they have 6 games to do it.
Take this opportunity to vent your frustrations, you have every right to call a spade a spade.