The Denver Broncos had the game won with mere seconds left in the fourth quarter as Demaryius Thomas broke free to the end zone, but Case Keenum floated the pass well over his head to secure victory for the Kansas City Chiefs.
Such is the difference between winning and losing in the NFL. One team remains undefeated, the other falls to 2-2 searching for answers.
There is reason to remain optimistic about the Broncos this season as they currently rank second in the NFL in rushing offense averaging 5.6 yards per carry on the ground. However, that is paired with the 21st ranked passing offense, which means they might need to shift their offensive philosophy from a pass-first one to a run-first one.
Head Coach Vance Joseph does not seem ready to accept that reality, though.
“Our offensive line has been really good all year. Both young backs, they ran downhill. They had 70+yards apiece. They ran downhill, but you score points by throwing the football. We ran the ball to control the game. You throw the ball to score. That’s never going to stop.”
What may stop it is another losing streak, but one thing is clear, the Broncos offense can move the ball this year. That should continue to make them more competitive in games, but they are not quite a playoff team.
Here is how they stack up in power rankings around the web.
ESPN - 18th
Rookie snaps leader: LB Bradley Chubb, 197 snaps out of 257 (three games, 76.7 percent). The No. 5 overall pick in the 2018 draft has contributed 1.5 sacks to a pass rush that came into Week 4 averaging 3.0 sacks per game.
NFL.com - 20th
That was a stinger Monday night, no doubt. Despite the loss, the Broncos move up two spots. Applaud the effort, and guts, if not the results in this particular case. The hook-and-ladder is difficult to pull off in any situation. Not sure it was the right call in the moment, although Courtland Sutton might not have maintained possession of his catch at the first-down line. Then again, perhaps he bobbled the Case Keenum throw because he was worried about the subsequent pitch. Many teams have failed at this play since the Dolphins successfully ran the original in that epic ‘81 Divisional Playoff against the Chargers. Keenum’s miss to Demaryius Thomas beforehand will stick to his ribs for a while. Feel for him. Unreal game.
SB Nation - 16th
The Chiefs closed out the week against the Broncos with a thriller as well; Kansas City held off the Broncos and came away with a Monday Night Football win to stay undefeated. The Rams and Chiefs are the only two undefeated teams remaining, keeping them in the same position as last week (first and second, respectively) in our power rankings.
USA Today - 20th
Defense did decent job containing Mahomes train Monday night, but Denver didn’t get big throw from Case Keenum in the clutch.
Yahoo Sports - 19th
That pass Case Keenum missed to Demaryius Thomas in the final seconds, when Thomas was running wide open down the sideline, is going to stick with him a long time. Denver is not a patient place when it comes to quarterbacks, and Keenum isn’t off to a wonderful start.