They did it again and this time while the home crowd was watching!
The most sound thing we saw in this game was Sean Payton figuring out to lean on his run game offensively. With the Denver Broncos’ backs producing more than 5 yards per carry, this team could win games consistently.
The defense played soundly as well. Any game where you keep the other team to under 20 points in today’s NFL is a good game for a defense.
But given that it was the Green Bay Packers who are in the middle of their own rebuild, I’m not going to jump all aboard the “We’re back!” bandwagon yet. The defense did well against a poor offense and vice versa.
This was about as vanilla of an offense as the Broncos have faced all season and they rose to the occasion. They looked good overall because Jordan Love isn’t the kind of quarterback yet who can make you pay with his arm or his mind.
Behind the curtain, though the Packers still ran the ball at 4.7 ypc which isn’t where you want to be if you want to be a good defense in the league. It was enough to win though, and I’m thankful for it as a fan.
The front as a whole did a lot of bending but not breaking. It seemed the game plan was more focused on not giving Love any running lanes rather than trying to put immense pressure on him. They had no sacks on the game as they really seemed to be begging him to throw the ball.
One thing that was announced during the broadcast was how prolific of a tackler Alex Singleton is. That’s not technically wrong, but to say he’s a great inside linebacker or insinuate it is disingenuous at best. He’s a solid player who I’d rather see be a backup rather than a starter on my team. Too many times he whiffs tackles and takes poor angles. This game was no exception even though the stats will tell you he led the team with 11 tackles and a TFL.
P.J. Locke had to step into some pretty big shoes in this game with the ejection of Kareem Jackson. He did a superb job and sealed the win for the Broncos with his late pick. He gets credit for making the exact right play on a throw that had no business being forced.
Kareem Jackson has got to clean up his play. It doesn’t matter how the game was played when he came into the league two decades ago. The rules are very clear on defenseless receiver penalties. At some point, you need to respect the game enough to adjust. If you don’t want to do that, retire. The league isn’t going to make exceptions for you, nor should it.
The executed game plan for this game was about what I would expect from a young offense learning how to execute. They ran the ball well and made some throws when needed to put enough points on the board to win.
I’m still bored to tears with the lack of aggression that Payton is showing with these players. That likely comes from their lack of ability to execute well or without penalties. Once the core team gets the offense to start benign second nature, I hope to see more aggression and throws downfield.
Russell Wilson did enough to win. He extended some drives with his legs. He made an excellent touchdown pass. He audibled into multiple good play calls at the line of scrimmage. I liked his game this week and hope the team can build off this success.
The line did a great job run blocking again this week. Many of the bigger runs we got from the team had to do with excellent execution up front opening up big gaps for the running backs to work with.
I’m starting to get pretty excited by the running we’re seeing from Javonte Williams. He’s looking more and more like his old self every week running with authority and stiff-arming would-be tacklers on his way to gains of 10+ yards.
I also really like the work that Samaje Perine puts in on 3rd down for this offense. He’s capable of running or catching out of the backfield as well as picking up the blitz. He was an outlet receiver who moved the chains a couple of times this game with nice catches out of the backfield.
Courtland Sutton is getting more involved in the offense and I’m a fan of it. If you are the #1 WR on the team, you need to be. I’m not sure he’s ever going to really be that guy in the NFL, but he’s a very good WR and the team looks much better when he’s seeing lots of targets.
Jerry Jeudy also finally showed up with 6 catches this week. He’s a guy that can get open seemingly at will. At least every time I see a target he’s got great separation. It makes me wonder what the issue is for him not being a more consistent target in this offense.
Wil Lutz was easily the MVP of the game. He knocked in 4 field goals and an extra point in the game. While I don’t want to see games like this with lots of field goals being kicked, I sure do like it when our kicker can make them.
I’m sure you can all tell I’m not really over the moon with this win. I don’t think anyone in Broncos Country should be. This was a very winnable game against a below-average NFL quarterback.
Next week we will be back with a real test though. We’ll see if the Broncos can win at home against their division rival. Hopefully, they surprise us.