The Denver Broncos find themselves, once again, in a must-win game.
With the brutal three-game schedule that lies ahead after this Sunday, and the continued success of the other teams in the AFC West, there is no room for error. Of course, the Broncos have known this since their home game against the Kansas City Chiefs. They view the remainder of their games as playoff games.
Up next is the Tennessee Titans, who are coming off their bye and are in a three-way tie for the AFC South lead. Needless to say, both teams have a lot on the line (thanks, John Madden).
For Denver to have a shot in Nashville on Sunday, it has to stop the run. As Adam Malnati and I discussed on the latest Mile High Report Radio Podcast, the Broncos defense must control the line of scrimmage against Tennessee to leave with a win. It’s done a better job of that the last few weeks, but this game will show us if we’ve been witnessing a mirage.
The Titans come into this game third in the NFL in rushing offense. Denver’s defense, meanwhile, is an abysmal 28th against the run. Let me type that again to nail it home: The Broncos are 28th against the run. Add in a mobile quarterback, and you see why this could be one of the deciding factors.
If Denver continues the trend of stopping the run, it increases the probability of a win. If the defense fails, those last three games become more crucial.