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Mile High Report Mailbag: Denver Broncos can hang edition

Hello folks, it's been a while, but now is the season of Bronco Mike's discontent. We're almost to a meaningful part of the season, it's just right over the horizon. Broncos fans Tovar, Blue505Orange, David Kromelow, and drtacp are here to bring the discussion.

The Broncos are paying DeMarcus Ware to be an every down player.  He isn't going to be a situational pass rusher, he isn't going to leave the field that often.  I would expect to see him receive at least 85% of the Broncos defensive snaps.  Last year DeMarcus played about 69% of the Cowboys snaps and that was with lingering injury issues.  The year before he played in 84.4% of the defensive snaps, the year before that in 86.7% of the defensive snaps.

Even with a more limited role last season, Ware managed to get pressure on 13.4% of his pass rushing snaps.  Projecting a healthy season with those numbers alone not to mention the amount of talent he will be playing with, it would be a disappointment if Ware does not reach a double-digit sack total.

I'm gonna break a lot of hearts right now.  You're not going to see a lot of breakthroughs on the roster unless someone gets injured.  I think the offense is set even with some competition at RT with Clark and Justice.  On defense the three positions that have some question are that MIKE LB spot, reserve safety, and possibly corner with Harris Jr. still rehabbing his bum knee.

From the limited reports we heard from OTA's, Lamin Barrow has a ways to go to unseat Nate Irving in the middle on base downs.

If Chris Harris Jr. doesn't perform at his pre-injury level expect for Bradley Roby to get some starting time right away.

Other than that, this training camp will be remembered for it's battles down the depth chart.  I'm talking swing T, 3rd TE, 4th/5th WR, rotational DT, every backup LB spot, 5th corner, and backup safeties.  It's a nice problem to have, the Broncos have stocked the team with talent from top to bottom.

Please, no more Seattle questions lol.  I've re-watched this game a handful of times now.  Anything that could go wrong, did, and the Broncos were a step behind in adjustments.

The MVP of that game was not Percy Harvin.  It was Kam Chancellor.  They let Kam sit near the box almost all game to read the crossing routes over the middle, and he ensured there would be little YAC from them.  The Seattle backers also had little respect for the run and they spread out in a short zone to help take away the YAC from the short passes.  From there, the line gave Manning little time to work intermediate and deep, and when he did, bad things happened.

The Broncos had two long first half drives that could have changed the complexion of the game.  Down 15-0, they marched down into Seattle territory only to have a 1st down tripping penalty put them into an unfavorable sequence.  The sequence ended on a 3rd and 9 pick six when Cliff Avril mowed Orlando Franklin into Peyton Manning and hit his arm. The 2nd happened near the end of the half down 22-0 when Manning shortarmed a 4th down throw to DT on the outside.  He missed a wide open Julius Thomas on an easier throw.

I thought Peyton got happy feet at the beginning and rushed some throws where he had time.  His first pick is evidence of this.  He steps up and buys time but fires inaccurately over the middle.

This game was over when Percy ran the kickoff back.  By then the Seattle D was too tough to allow that many points in that short of time.

The Seattle D is very, very good, but the Broncos offense could have made some adjustments sooner than they did.  Had they tried to work outside and intermediate a bit more, it could have kept those safeties a bit more honest.  Had they put in some double moves on the outside they would have beaten the coverage.  Problem is by the time they could change, the negative flow of the game and lack of momentum made it more difficult.

Against Seattle, you have to grind things out and not make mistakes.

So after all the lamenting I've just done, no the gap isn't that great, and yes I expect a better effort and outcome the next time around.

From my post on Projecting the Starting Defense, drtacp writes:

I am thinking that Bronco Mike expects TJ to be beyond studly

1 LB sets (4-1-6) even with TJ are going to be dominated with 12 offensive personnel packages.

Most teams that run 12 personnel as their base or bread and butter offense are not going to see our nickel and dime packages.  We wouldn't play a team like Washington that way, we would use our 4-3 under defense with Von Miller as a SAM LB.  Point being you'll only have 4 DB's in the game.

Against a team like NE you have to be more careful because of Gronkowski's dual threat as a blocker and pass catcher, but they are the exception, not the rule.  If NE decided to run 12 personnel say with Edelman and Amendola or even one of their young outside receivers and Edelman, I am confident that our outside guys could matchup and still allow flexibility for bracketing Gronkowski.

Where matchup issues will occur is when they scheme a way to get Gronk down the seam on Von Miller or Nate Irving from the base defense, but even then like I said they should have some over the top bracket help in TJ Ward.

Thanks for the questions--follow me on twitter, email, or post your questions in the message boards for participation.