The Denver Broncos had the chance to beat the Oakland Raiders in what will likely be the final game ever played at the Oakland Coliseum. It would have been glorious to defeat the Raiders under such circumstances, but unfortunately the team failed to show up and played one of their sloppiest games off the year. When it was all said and done the Raiders devoured the Broncos 27-14.
1. The Broncos register their first back-to-back losing seasons since 1972
Those wishing for a Christmas gift of a Broncos’ victory over the Raiders wound up with a lump of coal. With their embarrassing loss to the Raiders the Broncos have officially registered their first-back-to-back losing seasons in over four decades. Thankfully, it won’t be long until the Vance Joseph era in Denver comes to an end which is the true present many fans have been hoping for. Under his guidance the franchise has went south in a hurry. Quite frankly, it’s amazing to see how things have taken a turn for a worse so quickly over the past two years. Many believe that John Elway will wait until the end of the season to make a move, but perhaps tonight’s loss that might change.
The Denver Broncos have clinched consecutive losing seasons for the first time since 1971-72, ending the longest such stretch among NFL, NBA and MLB teams. (H/T @DougLesmerises) https://t.co/Qjk5yzgtcV— Matt Fortuna (@Matt_Fortuna) December 25, 2018
2. The team looked unprepared and uninspired
It was no secret that the Raiders’ were one of the worst teams in the National Football League. Their offense wasn’t overly impressive and their defense ranks at the bottom of almost ever category imaginable. None of that didn’t seem to even matter as the Broncos’ failed to do few things of merit the entire game. They looked unprepared, played uninspired and committed far too many penalties to have any remote chance at being successful. It was one of the worst games to watch all season.
3. Denver moves up to the 12th selection in the 2019 NFL Draft
For those fans who have already mailed it in on the season and are already focusing their efforts on the 2019 NFL Draft — this news is for you. With their loss to the Raiders, the Broncos have moved up on spot in the draft and are currently slated to select twelfth overall. A loss to the Los Angeles Chargers next week could propel them into the top ten, but there are a handful of 6-9 and 5-10 teams that stand in the way of a high pick. Whether you fancy a franchise quarterback or top-tier defensive prospect, the higher the Broncos can get, the better chance they will have at getting a blue-chip player who can be a difference maker.
Updated draft ranges (earliest-latest a team could pick)— Adam Stites (@AdamStites_) December 25, 2018
1. AZ (1st-3rd)
2. SF (1st-5th)
3. NYJ (1st-5th)
4. OAK (2nd-9th)
5. DET (2nd-9th)
6. TB (4th-12th)
t7. NYG (4th-12th)
t7. BUF (4th-12th)
9. JAX (4th-13th)
10. ATL (5th-16th)
11. CAR (7th-16th)
12. DEN (7th-16th)
4. The Broncos’ young receivers made a positive impact
Extended playing time for all of the young Broncos’ players will be important with respect to the future. While the Broncos’ offense was absolutely stagnant in the first half it showed some signs of life in the second half. The duo of Courtland Sutton and DaeSean Hamilton combined for 12 catches amassing 105 yards and two touchdowns. Additionally, Tim Patrick had several impressive grabs throughout the night. The three aforementioned players provide the Broncos’ offense with a sound foundation for the future but adding another dynamic playmaker to the unit would be a smart idea.
5. Phillip Lindsay hits the 1,000-yard milestone
A few days ago Lindsay became the first undrafted offensive player in history to make the Pro Bowl as a rookie. He hit another milestone Monday night becoming the sixth rookie running back in franchise history to reach the 1,000-yard rushing mark. Lindsay had 10 carries for 46 yards before exiting the game in the fourth quarter with a wrist injury. His individual performance is one of the sole bright spots in a lost Broncos’ season. I look forward to Lindsay being utilized in a better and more unique fashion next season.
So Broncos Country, what were your five big observations from tonight’s Christmas Eve game? Sound off in the comments section and make your voice heard!