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Time is of the essence for these Denver Broncos

It’s time to get it together.

NFL: Denver Broncos at Atlanta Falcons Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Broncos can’t keep playing like this.

For the second week in a row, Denver fell far behind their opponent and then worked furiously to close the gap to win. While that worked at home against the Chargers in week eight, there was no more magic this week in Atlanta against the Falcons.

The Broncos can’t keep starting each game like an overweight divorcee easing into a hotel hot tub. Denver has been timid and predictable. There just isn’t an expectation of success within the offense that they will score early in games.

It has become obvious that Drew Lock thrives when the offense goes up-tempo. When there is a sense of urgency, the young Broncos quarterback is a different person. Decisive. Sure of his reads. Without stats in hand, I would even wager that his accuracy goes up as well.

Early in games, it feels like Pat Shurmer is content to sacrifice early possessions with pedestrian play calls that yield pedestrian results. The hallmark of the Mike Shanahan era was that he would script out the first ten plays and they would set the tone for the rest of the game. After 9 weeks of Broncos brand football, it’s become apparent that the same emphasis on starting strong just isn’t there.

In a season riddled with injuries and with COVID quarantines claiming new folks just about every other day, I’ve always said that it is difficult to identify folks on which to pin blame for poor results. However, in the last two weeks, it appears that the Pat Shurmur Drew Lock working relationship has emerged as one of the biggest areas of concern. I believe that Drew Lock has enough juice to make some noise at quarterback for the Denver Broncos, but if he’s going to do so, Pat Shurmur is going to need to change his approach with the young quarterback.

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