It was the most exciting win the Denver Broncos have had all season. An extra point to take the lead, blocked and returned for two points to seal the Broncos victory? Is that real, or am I making it up? I watched it, but I still don’t believe it. Denver had to win their game against the New Orleans Saints. The AFC playoff picture doesn’t allow for another loss.
The defense stepped up in a big way down in the Big Easy. Darian Stewart came away with two interceptions and a fumble recovery. TJ Ward picked up the other fumble recovery, and Denver was able to win the turnover battle. It was 2015 all over again. The defense overcomes the turnover deficit, keeping the offense alive.
That was huge, but the biggest turnaround from the dumpster fire in Oakland was the time of possession. After spending over 40 minutes on the field last week, the defense was able to rest a little bit. The offense controlled the ball for almost 40 minutes.
The takeaway here has to be how great the defense is. Against the Raiders, with the time of possession reversed, they were able to keep it close, no matter how abysmal the offense was. This week in New Orleans, with total control, the offense still struggled to pull away from a bad Saints defense.
The time for sugar coating has been long gone, and the truth is that the offense is bad. Not just, “we’ll go back and figure a couple things out,” bad. More like, “can we do anything right,” bad. During the game, that is certainly the feeling, but looking back on the game, it wasn’t all bad.
Demaryius Thomas looked like a monster. He went up in the end zone and snagged a 50-50 ball that looked more like a 40-60 ball. Devontae Booker had a solid game on the ground, and Kapri Bibbs was the perfect compliment. Jordan Taylor’s touchdown catch was a thing of beauty.
With all that, there is still a 220 pound dead horse in the room that may need a little beating. The offense is stagnant. With as poorly as the Saints have played all year, the Broncos should have had no trouble running up the score. New Orleans is 28th in points allowed, and 29th in yards allowed. The defense limited the third highest scoring offense to just 23 points. The offense could only muster 23 points.
So, as long as Gary Kubiak continues to trot out the dead horse that is Trevor Siemian at quarterback, the media will continue to talk about it. It is not that Siemian is a bad guy, he just has no fire. He has no passion. The offense looks sluggish for a lot of reason. The offensive line is certainly no angel in this. However, the game runs through the quarterback.
The Broncos should have been able to score 30 points on the Saints awful defense. They couldn’t. That all starts with Siemian under center. Perhaps the bye week is the time to make the move to Paxton Lynch. I don’t think they will, but even in a win, Siemian looked like more of a detriment. It may be time to see what the true rookie can do.