If you want to make the argument that the Denver Broncos needed to start Trevor Siemian at quarterback this year because they didn’t want to waste the defense, you can stop it now. This defense is being wasted every time Siemian steps on the field. But there is no way to go back now.
As Ian St. Clair and I discussed on the MHR Radio podcast Post Game Recap, the defense is being wasted no matter who plays QB, so why are we still reliving 2016? There is no need to continue the Siemian bashing, but when the defense holds the opponent to 14 points, they deserve a win. The offense needs to start holding up their end of the bargain. The Broncos have regressed at an alarming rate since the high point of the season against Dallas.
Early on in the game, the defense showed why they are the best unit in all of football. With the ball on the one foot line, and four bites at the apple, San Diego failed to break the goal line. It was a masterpiece by the defense. Melvin Gordon is a touchdown hawk. Get him near the goal line, and he is a finisher. Not on this occasion. It looked like this was going to be the catalyst to something big.
It sure was. Denver’s offense went out and moved the ball to the 19, and promptly punted. Travis Benjamin took the ball 65 yards for the score, and pulled any momentum leftover from the goal line stand right into the end zone with him. Not all on the shoulders of the offense, but indicative of the way the season has gone.
Riley Dixon had 8 punts. The Broncos offense was was so inept that Brandon McManus never even sniffed a field goal opportunity. Once again, the Broncos were 0% efficiency in the red zone. It was another week of embarrassment for the Broncos. The offense couldn’t move the ball, and it turned it over.
Siemian lost a fumble. A.J. Derby lost a fumble. Siemian threw several passes that should have been intercepted, but only had one. His INT was bad. It was the worst interception he has ever thrown. Hyperbole? Perhaps, but when the ball goes 10 feet over the head of Demaryius Thomas and lands softly into the waiting hands of the defender, it ranks up there for sure.
That interception was the perfect bookend to the Broncos goal line stand. It was the perfect example of the differences that face the team. Denver’s defense is all world. Even playing with bad field position, and knowing the offense can’t get it done, they only allowed 14 offensive points. The offense decided to throw a short screen to C.J. Anderson on 4th and 26 in the waning moments of the game. The contrast is stark, and alarming.
The Denver Broncos have been one of the most successful franchises in modern NFL history. Being shutout by a bad Los Angeles team, in Los Angeles, surrounded by a sea of orange and blue? What more needs to be said. There are drastic changes that need to be made at Dove Valley, and it has to start with the QB. Until that changes, the defense can hold teams to 3 points and it won’t matter.