There’s the Denver Broncos defense fans have grown to love.
A week after a bizarro occurrence against the Kansas City Chiefs when it allowed three-straight scoring drives, the defense responded in emphatic fashion. The Broncos allowed next to nothing to the Jacksonville Jaguars, scored a defensive touchdown and sealed the game with a turnover in a big 20-10 win.
To say Denver needed the defense in this game is a severe understatement. The offense struggled (to say the least), the quarterback looked and played like a rookie (to say the least) and it couldn’t convert on third down. A lot of the focus will go to the quarterback and which side “you’re on,” but focus on the win ... at least for now. Enjoy it. Soak it in. That’s what matters with four games left in the season.
However it needed to happen, the Broncos had to win this game on Sunday. A loss to the Jaguars would have been tough to overcome; especially with the schedule that lies ahead.
As we speak, Denver sits in the sixth seed in the AFC playoff standings with an 8-4 record. The win over Jacksonville was the first step, the other was the Baltimore Ravens taking care of the Miami Dolphins with ease.
The reason this was allowed to happen was the Broncos defense. Don’t forget about the special teams either, but let’s save that for a little later. The story of the day is the defense. You could focus on the plays from Bradley Roby and Von Miller, but the defense really did get its groove back.
Despite getting no help from the offense in terms of time of possession or points, Denver held the Jaguars to 10 points, 179 yards passing and three turnovers, two that you would classify as huge. For a reference, this game reminds me of last season’s game in Oakland against the Raiders.
Throw in the play of the special teams and you get this outcome. Namely punts that buried Jacksonville in its own territory and Kalif Raymond doing a great job of returning punts — in his first crack at it. The one positive you can say about the Broncos offense is it didn’t turn the ball over and put the defense in tougher shape.
The only thing that matters right now is the win. Denver was able to flush the loss to the Chiefs out of its system, respond with a huge win and put itself back in the playoff discussion.
As this team has shown since last season, all it needs is a chance and to tell them it can’t. Let’s save the quarterback drama for another day. This is about the Broncos. It’s about the playoffs and keeping that alive; however possible. They did that.
Now, with four weeks left in the season, it’s on to Tennessee.