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Denver Broncos snap counts against the Atlanta Falcons

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Here are the snap counts for the Denver Broncos players in the loss to the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.

NFL: Atlanta Falcons at Denver Broncos Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

The Falcons used the old Peyton Manning trick. They went "tempo" and forced us to defend with the 11 guys that we currently had on the field. This led to some unusually high defensive snap numbers for members of our defense who made some uncharacteristic errors (missed assignments, missed tackles). Let’s start with the defensive snaps this go round.

Game 1 Game 2 Game 3 Game 4 Game 5
Harris 95% 92% 99% 96% 93%
Ward 89% 90% 96% 97% 100%
Stewart 88% 100% 100% 100% 96%
Marshall 84% 89% 88% 69% 90%
Talib 82% 81% 91% 89% 97%
Miller 77% 70% 79% 65% 72%
Crick 75% 73% 82% 68% 87%
Williams 66% 55% 60% 46% 63%
Wolfe 66% 77% 73% 66% 67%
Davis 63% 55% 69% 55% 78%
Roby 63% 64% 45% 68% 28%
Ray 52% 62% 73% 70% 78%
Ware 44% 18% 0% 0% 0%
Simmons 40% 55% 0% 0% 0%
Barrett 30% 37% 36% 52% 40%
Winn 30% 21% 24% 32% 34%
Nelson 21% 5% 7% 27% 12%
Webster 15% 12% 1% 4% 0%
Kilgo 15% 10% 13% 17% 21%
Gotsis 7% 15% 12% 17% 10%
Watson 0% 16% 12% 13% 10%
Parks 0% 7% 37% 46% 18%
Keo 0% 0% 1% 0% 0%
Z. Anderson 0% 0% 1% 3% 6%
Doss 0% 0% 0% 0% 1%

TJ Ward, Aquib Talib, Jared Crick, Brandon Marshall, Todd Davis, Shane Ray, Billy Winn and Darius Kilgo all had their highest snap% of the year in game 5. I surmise that this was by design. Kyle Shanahan thought that he could exploit certain personal in our defense and he didn’t let us sub them out once they were in. On the flip-side, Adam Gotsis, Will Parks and Bradley Roby all saw significantly reduced defensive snaps relative to game 4. Given the low number of snaps for Roby, the Falcons must have only used three WRs very sparingly. Kyle Shanahan figured that it was better to attack our base package than to attack our nickel. Like Darian Stewart in the previous game, TJ Ward played every defensive snap for us in game 5.

Game 1 Game 2 Game 3 Game 4 Game 5
Stephenson 100% 11% 0% 0% 0%
Okung 100% 100% 81% 100% 100%
Schofield 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Paradis 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Garcia 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Siemian 100% 100% 100% 29% 0%
Sanders 86% 85% 85% 86% 97%
Anderson 83% 66% 72% 67% 51%
Thomas 76% 79% 85% 71% 80%
Green 71% 58% 0% 0% 0%
Norwood 52% 56% 61% 43% 64%
Janovich 47% 48% 40% 40% 17%
Latimer 29% 25% 36% 29% 43%
Taylor 22% 14% 10% 21% 23%
Phillips 10% 35% 40% 40% 36%
Weems 10% 89% 21% 3% 41%
Booker 10% 20% 24% 25% 41%
Bibbs 3% 14% 0% 8% 0%
Sambrailo 0% 0% 100% 100% 59%
Heuerman 0% 0% 28% 39% 21%
Fowler 0% 0% 16% 28% 26%
Lynch 0% 0% 0% 71% 100%

There are some surprised here as well. The biggest for me is the limited usage of Andy Jonavich. His 17% (12 snaps) is a season low for him. I realize that we were playing from behind for almost the entire game, but you have to wonder if having a FB in there might have helped in two ways: pass blocking/chipping on Beasely (helping out Ty Sambrailo) and giving Paxton Lynch a safe easy outlet in the passing game. Another Surprise was Emmanuel Sanders taking 97% of the offensive snaps. I love the fact that we wanted him on the field for almost every play, but I have to wonder if he is going to get worn out but that heavy workload. Davontae Booker hit a season high - 41% - getting close to the 51% utilization of CJ Anderson. Neither of our TEs had an impact on the game (for good or bad) yet John Phillips played 36% and Jeff Heuerman played 21%. For all the good that they did in pass and/or run blocking they might as well have not played. Cody Latimer played a season high 43% of the offensive snaps but was not targetted once in the passing game. This could be a function of trust or familiarity. Lynch appears to have a really good level of rapport with Sanders, but based upon target in the two games where Lynch has played, he does not trust many other of our receivers (yet).

What's your take on the snaps from game 5? Did anything jump out to you that I didn't mention? Let me know in the comments.