clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2 winners, 10 losers in the Broncos’ season-defining loss to the Panthers

Now that the season is lost it’s a matter of when the Broncos move on from Nathaniel (will never) Hackett.

NFL: Denver Broncos at Carolina Panthers Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

As Simon and Garfunkel sang, “Hello darkness, my old friend.”

In a game that defines this season and the last six years, the Denver Broncos just lost 23-10 to a Carolina Panthers team with Sam Darnold at quarterback.

If this isn’t rock bottom for the Broncos, what is?

Denver falls to 3-8 with little hope for the remainder of the season and the foreseeable future.

Per the usual, I’m bound to forget someone, leave them off or put them in the wrong category, so please mention them in the comments.


Mike Purcell

Thank you for finally showing emotion. Thank you for finally getting in the face of the quarterback. Thank you for showing Broncos Country anything. This was six years in the making, and it’s about got damn time.

Seattle Seahawks

Pete Carroll and John Schneider have to be absolutely giddy. The Seahawks now have a top-three pick in the NFL Draft. And there’s every reason to think it could get even higher over the remainder of the season.


Nathaniel (will never) Hackett

Is this finally the last straw? It’s time to move on. It’s time for the new Broncos ownership to send a message this will not be tolerated. The losing culture is more present than a ketchup and grape juice stain on the new bride’s gown. Send a message. Make Dom Capers the interim head coach and ride out the remainder of the season.

George Paton

The man who made this horrible mistake must take responsibility. Paton also made what appears to be the worst trade in NFL history. And then added $250 million to make it even worse.

Russell Wilson

The only hope is a new head coach, new offensive coordinator and new system can right this Denver Titanic.

Pat Surtain II

Two bad weeks in a row for the Broncos second-year cornerback. And that’s putting it mildly. Surtain should be fine, but these two weeks will leave a mark.

Courtland Sutton

Not only does an offensive captain commit a selfish and stupid penalty, but he also had another drop in the end zone.

Brandon McManus

For a guy who loves kicking long field goals, he sure loves missing long field goals.

Broncos run defense

Denver's run defense got manhandled for the second week in a row. And no one can set the edge for this defense. The Broncos gave up 185 yards rushing on 46 carries.

Denver’s offensive line

Yes, this unit is down to third- and fourth-stringers. But good grief. Just like the Broncos defensive front, this group got owned all game long.

The Broncos

This is a losing franchise. The days of Pat Bowlen are now long gone. One could make the argument this is the worst organization/team in the NFL. The only hope for Paton and the Broncos is the San Francisco 49ers don’t go on a run, though it appears they will. Add in losing your first-round pick ... that’s the cherry on top of this turd sundae.

Joe Ellis

No one is more responsible for how far this franchise has fallen than this man. He’s been directly involved in every decision over the last six years. As Josh Dover pointed out, imagine how different this franchise would be had Ellis allowed John Elway to hire Kyle Shanahan. Ellis should be shunned and never allowed near Broncos headquarters ever again.