Former Denver Broncos wide receiver and University of Colorado standout, Mike Pritchard, joined Eric Goodman and Zach Fogg on Mile High Sports' Afternoon Drive and talked about Peyton Manning's struggles to quarterback the Gary Kubiak offense through three games.
The entire interview was a good one, but the first two questions were where some bombs were dropped right on Peyton Manning's head. I think the points Pritchard made from both questions are at least interesting enough for Broncos Country to discuss in greater detail. Few people are displeased with Manning's tenure in Denver, but all of us sure would like to see the Broncos hoist that Lombardi trophy at the conclusion of Super Bowl 50, so its worth discussing how best to get there.
On if the wide receivers are making Manning right now
"Clearly the wide receivers are making Peyton Manning right now. Am I wrong in that? Owen Daniels. Don't forget that amazing touchdown catch too. And that's why you build a roster the way John Elway has. That's why you sign DT. That's why you bring in a guy like Emmanuel Sanders. Because when you do have a quarterback that, let's face it he's not playing the way he was or the way people are accustomed to. Yes, he has had a Hall of Fame career, but he is 39 years old. And there is a lot of wear and tear there.
"So how do you get him to play better or how do you get him to play more consistent? Well you upgrade or keep the guys in place that can help him do that. And that's what the Broncos are doing right now."
On if Manning needs to do a better job of meeting Kubiak halfway
"Well, yes he does. At what point is Peyton Manning going to let somebody else coach the offense? Because here is a guy who has been in charge of his offense for his entire career. He doesn't know any other different way, so how is he going to be able to do that, how is he going to be able to adapt to that type of philosophy? Well obviously he fought it. They ran more pistol, they ran more of the rub routes and more of the same concepts we've seen from Peyton Manning in the last several years than we've ever seen from Gary Kubiak. So I don't know if Peyton Manning and Gary Kubiak meeting halfway on this or is it just a matter of Gary Kubiak saying okay in order for my quarterback to play at a high level I need him to do this. I need him to be comfortable. And clearly, I think Peyton Manning is comfortable with this style, than a style that will lead to a Super Bowl."
Which "style" is actually better suited for winning a Super Bowl?
When Pritchard mentioned the two styles, he was referring to Manning's shotgun finesse style of offense to Kubiak's zone blocking late 90's Broncos style. I actually think, looking at my sports almanac, both styles have won Super Bowls and both styles have produced Super Bowl appearances. That was a bit of a misnomer from Pritchard.
Do you know what "style" I think will actually produce a Super Bowl this year? A style that scores 22.5 points per game. That's all we need with this Orange Crush 2.0 defense Denver has. The debate is a good one and is worth discussing, but at the end of the day that debate is overshadowing what this Broncos defense has achieved through three games. If they keep this up into the playoffs, the Broncos are going to be a force to be reckoned with - high-octane offense or no high-octane offense.
Eric and Zach also discussed the how these Broncos wide receivers and tight ends are making extra ordinary plays on offense to open up the big play. Whether its a long bomb touchdown or an amazing catch to get five yards on a third and four.