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Denver Broncos Week 8 snap counts and analysis

Call it a comeback. Who played and who didn’t?

Los Angeles Chargers v Denver Broncos Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy [football]?

The Denver Broncos comeback against the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday was one of the best in team history (down 21 points in third quarter) and we have chronicled who was most responsible for victory, but let’s look at who us played and might not be showing up on anyone’s radar - but still might have been a big contributor to victory.

As requested I have sorted the tables by position group and will do so each week going forward. After the eighth game I will also be doing position group charts to track playing time. Apologies in advance to those who are color blind.

First the inactive players for this game, there were only six this game: QB 9 Jeff Driskel, WR 11 Diontae Spencer, TE 80 Jake Butt, G 52 Netane Muti, WR 81 Tim Patrick, DL 95 McTelvin Agim.

Offense

Player Position game 1 game 2 game 3 game 4 game 5 game 6 game 7
Lloyd Cushenberry III C 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Dalton Risner G 100% 100% 100% 100% 50% 100% 100%
Graham Glasgow G 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 0%
Austin Schlottmann G/C 0% 0% 0% 0% 50% 0% 100%
Jeff Driskel QB 0% 83% 79% 1% 0% 0% 0%
Brett Rypien QB 0% 0% 21% 99% 0% 1% 0%
Drew Lock QB 100% 17% 0% 0% 100% 99% 100%
Melvin Gordon RB 63% 79% 62% 80% 0% 60% 55%
Royce Freeman RB 10% 21% 38% 20% 39% 23% 0%
Phillip Lindsay RB 32% 0% 0% 0% 62% 18% 45%
LeVante Bellamy RB 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Jeremy Cox RB 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 10% 9%
Elijah Wilkinson T 100% 100% 100% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Garett Bolles T 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Demar Dotson T 0% 0% 0% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Calvin Anderson T 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Noah Fant TE 73% 79% 84% 50% 0% 70% 78%
Jake Butt TE 27% 9% 29% 49% 61% 0% 0%
Andrew Beck TE 10% 9% 10% 11% 17% 0% 0%
Nick Vannett TE 27% 30% 0% 40% 45% 45% 17%
Albert Okwuegbunam TE 0% 0% 0% 0% 38% 40% 25%
KJ Hamler WR 0% 62% 92% 20% 0% 39% 80%
Tim Patrick WR 85% 65% 84% 76% 92% 66% 0%
Jerry Jeudy WR 75% 57% 73% 69% 73% 75% 89%
DaeSean Hamilton WR 80% 44% 19% 81% 59% 35% 94%
Tyrie Cleveland WR 8% 0% 6% 3% 6% 17% 0%
Diontae Spencer WR 10% 4% 3% 1% 6% 0% 0%
Courtland Sutton WR 0% 40% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Fred Brown WR 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 8%

So our offensive line was shaken up again this game with Graham Glasgow missing due to COVID-19 (along with his position coach). This meant that Austin Schlottmann played every offensive snap for the first time since the end of the 2019 season when he started the last four game for and played every offensive snap. Dalton Risner was gutting out another game despite being less than 100%. Demar Dotson has now started more games at RT for us than Elijah Wilkinson has this season. Dotson and Garett Bolles both played 100% of the offensive snaps along with Lloyd Cushenberry III. LCIII and Bolles are the only offensive lineman to who have played ever snap for us so far this season. They are also the only two offensive players who can say that this year.

Drew Lock played every snap for us at QB.

Melvin Gordon played 55 percent of the offensive snaps at running back while Phillip Lindsay got the other 45 percent. Jeremy Cox got six snaps at fullback exclusively near the goal line. Gordon was the focus of the play on 15 of our 65 snaps (eight carries and 7 targets). Lindsay was the focus on nine plays (six carries and three targets). From that perspective our running backs were the focus of the play on 37 percent of our offensive snaps. I will admit that I have not dug in to see how this compares to the previous six games.

Our tight end group had Noah Fant playing 78 percent of the snaps with Albert Okwuegbunam playing 25 percent and Nick Vannett 17 percent. That means that we didn’t not use many two tight end sets this past game. That might have had something to do with the running game generating two yards (!?!?!?!) in the first half. Fant was second on the team this game with nine targets (catching seven of those).

The wide receiver group had DaeSean Hamilton playing 94 percent of the snaps after having only played 35 percent the game before. This was partly due to Tim Patrick’s injury but it says that Tyrie Cleveland is in the dog house. Cleveland got zero offensive snaps. In fact Fred Brown got the snaps when we used four WRs. Jerry Jeudy (89 percent) and KJ Hamler (80 percent) both played a career high snap percentages this game. Jeudy was targeted a team-high ten times (4 catches). Hamler was targeted three times catching all three, including the game winner.

Other offensive players, besides Cleveland, who were active but did not play any offensive snaps were Royce Freeman, Jake Rodgers, Patrick Morris and Calvin Anderson. This was the first game all year where Freeman did not get a single offensive snap. Of course we mostly abandoned the run, which is what you do when you are down 21 points in the third quarter.

Defense

Player Position game 1 game 2 game 3 game 4 game 5 game 6 game 7
Bryce Callahan CB 99% 100% 97% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Michael Ojemudia CB 79% 100% 97% 100% 100% 73% 92%
Essang Bassey CB 56% 72% 57% 48% 0% 0% 17%
A.J. Bouye CB 35% 0% 0% 0% 0% 100% 80%
Davontae Harris CB 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
De'Vante Bausby CB 0% 0% 0% 51% 74% 0% 0%
Duke Dawson CB/S 0% 6% 1% 10% 18% 8% 9%
Jurrell Casey DE 70% 78% 71% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Shelby Harris DE 56% 51% 57% 71% 67% 63% 59%
Dre'Mont Jones DE 47% 31% 0% 0% 0% 61% 59%
DeMarcus Walker DE 21% 6% 0% 0% 0% 43% 30%
DeShawn Williams DT 0% 0% 40% 39% 63% 57% 36%
McTelvin Agim DT 0% 0% 13% 22% 0% 0% 0%
Timmy Jernigan DT 0% 0% 0% 1% 18% 0% 0%
Alexander Johnson ILB 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Josey Jewell ILB 98% 97% 91% 95% 86% 92% 92%
Joseph Jones ILB 1% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Austin Calitro ILB 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Josh Watson ILB 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
Mike Purcell NT 51% 63% 69% 62% 63% 10% 0%
Sylvester Williams NT 0% 0% 0% 0% 12% 0% 28%
Jeremiah Attaochu OLB 74% 62% 38% 0% 0% 0% 23%
Bradley Chubb OLB 73% 86% 71% 77% 84% 71% 82%
Malik Reed OLB 41% 48% 43% 74% 86% 84% 77%
Derrek Tuszka OLB 0% 0% 0% 6% 7% 0% 0%
Anthony Chickillo OLB 0% 0% 49% 43% 23% 39% 18%
Justin Simmons S 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
Kareem Jackson S 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 99%
Trey Marshall S 1% 0% 3% 0% 0% 0% 0%
P.J. Locke S 0% 0% 3% 0% 0% 0% 0%

Because Kareem Jackson missed one defensive snap, we only had three players play every defensive snap this game. Justin Simmons, Alexander Johnson and Bryce Callahan all played every defensive snap. Simmons and Johnson have done so for every game this year.

The defensive line group had Shelby Harris and Dre’Mont Jones both playing 59 percent of the snaps. DeShawn Williams (36 percent), DeMarcus Walker (30 percent) and Sylvester Williams (28 percent) rounded out the group. I initially thought that the DL was quite productive, but given that the Chargers ran 87 offensive plays, there were plenty of tackles to go around. We literally had three players in double digits in total tackles (Jackson, Josey Jewell and Johnson).

Our outside linebacker group had Bradley Chubb playing 82 percent and Malik Reed playing 77 percent. Anthony Chickillo (18 percent) subbed in when Chubb needed a rest and Jeremiah Attaochu (23 percent) did so when Reed needed rest. As a team we had two sacks and five QB hits. Both sacks and all but one of those QB hits came from Reed and Chubb. The other QB hit was credited to Dre’Mont Jones.

While we continued to send ILBs to blitz this game, Jewell (92 percent of the defensive snaps) and Johnson did not seem to generate any pressure on the QB this game. I may have missed some though. I will pay more attention to them when I re-watch this game.

No backup safeties played on defense unless you count Duke Dawson as a safety. Dawson played 8 snaps (nine percent).

The cornerback group that has not been mentioned previously saw Michael Ojemudia play 92 percent of the snaps and A.J. Bouye play 80 percent before he was hit by Jackson and knocked out of the game. Once Bouye left, Essang Bassey played those snaps - 17 percent. The only active CB who played no defensive snaps was Davontae Harris. Harris has yet to play a defensive snap this season for us.

Other active defensive players who only played on special teams were Joseph Jones, Trey Marshall, P.J. Locke and Austin Calitro.