1. Stop the One, Two Punch
Another week, another opportunity for me to tell the Broncos defense to stop the run. Aaron Jones and AJ Dillon are among the best running backs tandems in the league when healthy, which Jones has not. Young Packers QB, Jordan Love, has been missing those dynamic backs so they can help their offense move the ball more consistently. Jones has not played since September 28th and is eyeing his return this weekend against the Broncos. Jones said he was “feeling good” after the Packers bye week and returned to practice this week. That being said, if Jones ends up playing it will make it that much more of a priority for the Broncos defense to slow down the tandem. The Broncos have the worst rush defense in the league in terms of yards per carry, so I know it’s asking for a lot, but it’s worth a shot.
2. Sutton vs. Jaire
Courtland Sutton has a tall task ahead of him this weekend because he’ll be going up against one of the best cornerbacks in the league, Jaire Alexander, on the other side of the ball. If the Broncos want any shot at winning this week, this matchup needs to be a positive for them. Russ has yet to find a connection with anyone else on the offense through the air besides Sutton. So, if Alexander completely wins that matchup between him and Sutton, then it’s unlikely the Broncos keep pace with the Packers on the scoreboard.
3. The Simmons Effect
Before Justin Simmons’ return to the Broncos defense, they were allowing the highest QB rate in the league with 117.8. But now that Simmons has been back in action the last two weeks, that number has dropped to an average rate of 87.0. This defense played their socks off last week only allowing 19 points against the best QB in the league and Simmons himself was even able to pick Mahomes off. Whatever Simmons is doing, he needs to keep it up because it is obvious this defense desperately needs him to make plays and captain the ship. Simmons needs to make himself known or else (if the trend continues) Jordan Love will have a career game against the defense.