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Broncos at Chiefs: The No Bull Review

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The Denver Broncos lost in a game that was nowhere as close as the score suggests. Here are my thoughts, analysis, and opinions on what Broncos Country can take away from a disappointing night at Arrowhead.

NFL: Denver Broncos at Buffalo Bills Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

Déjà Vu.

This story is getting quite old. This Bronco team has far too much raw talent on it to be held back by what is a very sub-par quarterback. I’m honestly relieved to hear post-game some of the players calling out the problem for what it is and putting pressure on the coaches and front office to make a change.

When we step away from the dumpster fire situation at quarterback though, there was a lot in this game to be pleased about as a fan. Hopefully, we can get more focus on the players who are playing at a high level instead of focusing on one player who isn’t.

Defense

I see this game as one of growth for Joe Woods and the defensive unit. We still had many of the same problems we have had for years with coverage on TEs and the ability of the middle of the defense to stay on top of misdirection plays. But the promising thing I see from the 20,000’ view is the adjustments that happened as the game wore on.

Denver did a superb job of changing what they were doing to mire down the KC offense. Without stout play in the red zone and a strong performance from the front-7, this game would have eclipsed 50 points, easily.

Front 7

Domata Peko is playing likely the best football of his career. That’s how good he is at holding down the middle and impacting plays especially in the run game. He’s the best signing of the offseason by far and I’m hopeful to see him finish his career in orange and blue.

Shane Ray, on the other hand was a downgrade at OLB much like I said he would be in the past couple of weeks. The book has been written on the young player who thinks he’s the 2nd coming of DeMarcus Ware. He has great jets to get upfield, but teams use that to design plays to his outside edge because they know he’ll blow the assignment fairly consistently. I see this as on major ding on the coaching staff.

It goes without saying that Shaquil Barrett should have been starting this game. He’s in better shape, is a far smarter player, and is a far better run defender than Shane Ray. He got a strip sack at the end of the 1st half to give the team life. He had a forced fumble, a TFL, and as I’ve come to expect, did a great job holding his assignment on the right side of the defense.

Really, the front 7 should get a heck of a lot more credit for their job shutting down one of the league’s premier rushing attacks in KC. Kareem Hunt has been averaging 5.78 ypc. This team held him to 2.1 on 22 carries. That’s no fluke. That is awesome defensive run stopping.

Secondary

Bradley Roby is not a good zone coverage player. On a 3rd and long he got caught playing pocket pool while Kelce completed an easy conversion right in front of him. The problem here is that there was no other receiver in the area of Roby’s zone or anywhere close that would threaten his coverage area. That means he’s not reading the offense or reacting in a way that allows him to make a play. It goes without saying, he’s much better at man coverage.

Darian Stewart got smoked in man coverage on Kelce for a TD. That was a match-up that never should have happened, honestly. I love DStew, but the guy doesn’t have the jets or the size to one-on-one Kelce. He had a really nice game outside of that one play though with some really impressive coverage play and of course getting to squat on a corner of the end zone to get an easy INT on what was one of the most pathetic trick plays I’ve seen in awhile.

Justin Simmons superb run stop on 2nd and goal absolutely destroying the running back in the back field. He really put together a nice game with a lot of flashes of being in on tackles which is what you want from a good safety who knows how to attack offenses by diagnosing the play quickly.

This may sound crazy, but does anyone else out there in Broncos Country wonder why we wouldn’t just put Aqib Talib on Kelce on 3rd down plays? Talib absolutely in every way can shut that guy down. He has the size and speed for it.

Offense

I loved the work that the offense put on the field in this game. And when I say that, it excludes the QB position. The unit as a whole put in good effort and I can tell they are just a QB away from decent NFL football.

Quarterbacks

I’m not going to spend a lot of time here as I feel this scrub of a player gets far too much attention and far too much time in the spotlight. Suffice to say, he is a broken, pathetic excuse for a football player at this point. He has completely lost track of the mechanics of throwing a football accurately and making sound decisions on where to go with the football (which the later I question if he has ever truly had in the first place).

Line

What a superb job up front by our O-Line. They were run blocking monsters practically across the board to the tune of 177 yards on the day. Garrett Bolles and Ron Leary especially stood out as impactful players on the field in this department.

The pass blocking was still average with both tackles having turns at getting beat, but if you think that is not to be expected against Justin Houston, I’m not sure what else to tell you. This is the NFL and Houston is a phenom.

Running Backs

JC lights it up early with a 18 yard gain on a draw play. Then on the next play he gets stood up and stripped which gets housed. I thought it was interesting that he got benched for quite some time while others who made multiple turnovers just kept getting to trot back out on the field.

Conversely, C.J. Anderson had his best running game of the season. With the line opening holes in the middle, he made several nice runs of 10+. I’m sure the great job by the line had something to do with it, but he made some pretty good choices on which holes to attack in this game.

Devontae Booker gets a TD with some great burst through a nice gap made by the line. I can understand the chatter about the coaches liking this guy. I don’t think there’s some atrocity happening from him not getting more snaps, but the guy plays the game well and appears to me to be as good as the other two guys on any given day.

Receivers

It is hard to tell much about a group of receivers when the QB play is so poor. But I will say that there was an awful lot of drops in this game by guys that are currently playing #2 and #3 spots on the depth chart. When the QB actually did get the ball to hit players in the hands or numbers, they were getting dropped...this means you Virgil Green, Bennie Fowler, and Jordan Taylor.

I do want to say that given the past couple of games, the team needs a better #3 option at WR. Bennie Fowler looks completely mediocre to poor from where I stand.

Special Teams

Isaiah McKenzie gets no excuses from me for his muffed punt. That kid needs to chew bench as we don’t have the luxury of letting him develop while we have an offense that can’t score points. The #1 job of the returners is to catch the ball. No impact can be made if you can’t do that.

Final Thoughts

As the game was going on, one of the big things I was pointing out to our staff in chat was the lack of discipline being put into effect by our coaching staff. I’m glad that Vance Joseph can keep trotting out in front of a microphone and coach-speaking the right way. But at some point the players aren’t going to keep taking your company lines and the rest of the bull you keep dumping in the trough.

How can you bench a NFL legend for one fumble, but keep letting a walking atrocity lead the offense who has shown so many times that he sucks in the clutch and is regressing as a player? Hopefully Vance learns from his first year as a head coach that he needs to use the hook sooner. He’s flirting with losing the locker room and there are very big consequences that come along with that (examples: players not giving home town discounts, losing your job as a coach since the players won’t listen to you any longer, lack of effort on the field as players check out).

I’d love to hear from you guys and gals out there in Broncos Country on this angle. Hit up the poll and tell me what you think in the comments about when the starting quarterback should have been benched.

Poll

When was the right time to give Siemian the hook?

This poll is closed

  • 8%
    This week...I love how it was handled.
    (61 votes)
  • 27%
    At halftime. He was shooting the team in the foot.
    (203 votes)
  • 41%
    After last week’s game.
    (300 votes)
  • 22%
    Sometime last year.
    (162 votes)
726 votes total Vote Now