clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

RECAP: Broncos offense beyond disappointing in 15-13 loss to Colts

The Denver Broncos coached their way out of a win against the Indianapolis Colts in an embarrassing use of playcalls and timeouts.

Denver Broncos v Indianapolis Colts Photo by Bobby Ellis/Getty Images

The Denver Broncos defense came to play in this game against the Indianapolis Colts. Unfortunately, the offense did not. This game completely exposed Rich Scangarello as a playcaller. On third and 5 with the game on the line, he chose to run it up the gut for no gain. That led to the Colts having plenty of time to march down the field for the winning field goal.

Denver falls to 2-6 after this 15-13 heartbreaking defeat. The offense is broken and it won’t be fixed in 2019.

First Quarter

Things looked bleak right out of the gates as the Broncos special teams gave up a 47-yard return on the opening kick. However, the defense came to play in this game and held the Colts to a long field goal attempt that Adam Vinatieri pushed wide right.

After trading punts, the Broncos got a long drive going late in the first quarter. They would end up kicking a short field goal after a 17-play drive early in the second quarter, but it was a good sign that this game could turn into a low scoring affair.

Full first quarter recap.

Second Quarter

Denver added another field goal before halftime and had a 6-0 lead with over two minutes to go. They got a good drive going, but then went conservative on the playcalling. The Colts used a timeout on third down and held, giving their offense a chance to go down the field with just over a minute to go in the half.

Vinatieri didn’t miss on his next attempt, booming a 55-yard field goal to close out the first half. The Broncos were up 6-3, but they lost a bit of momentum there at the end of the half.

Full second quarter recap.

Third Quarter

The Broncos finally scored a touchdown and even extended their lead to 13-3, but from there they went into hibernation while the defense started to fail to contain the Colts offense.

Indianapolis surged back in this game with long drives for a field goal and then after the Broncos offense quickly went three and out, another long drive for what could have been a game tying touchdown. Vinatieri hooked the PAT to preserve a 1-point Broncos lead late in the third quarter.

However, Denver would finally break out of their offensive funk late in the third quarter and were threatening late when the quarter ended.

Full third quarter recap.

Fourth Quarter

A ticky tack penalty on Noah Fant pushed the Broncos out of field goal range and Joe Flacco was predictably almost sacked as Garett Bolles was on his back almost instantly.

The Colts were in the shadow of their own end zone and after a three yard tackle for a loss by Mike Purcell, Derek Wolfe looked like he was held in the end zone on second down. However, he got his revenge on third down with a sack on Jacoby Brissett on third down.

From there, the Broncos offense took all momentum and flushed it down the toilet with some timely three and outs and then the Broncos special teams added to it with poor punts and penalties.

The Denver defense had no quit in them as Von Miller wrapped Brissett up in a sack who broke free only to have Derek Wolfe strip the ball for Malik Reed to fall on it with over seven minutes remaining in the game.

The Broncos offense responded with, yes, a quick three and out. The Broncos defense really wants this win and continued to stymie the Colts offense getting the ball back in Joe Flacco’s hands with three and a half minutes left.

They responded with back-to-back runs for a first down out across midfield that forced the Colts to begin using their timeouts. At the two minute warning, the Broncos were faced with a third and five. Rich Scangarello chose to run Phillip Lindsay up the gut for no gain to give the Colts a full two minutes to get into field goal range.

Game. Set. Match.