The Denver Broncos have won three straight games for the first time since the first three weeks of the 2021 NFL season, and the completed hat trick on Monday night over the Buffalo Bills could not have been more fitting for a prime-time matchup.
The game was downright pandemonium, filled with turnovers, penalties, bumbling mistakes by both sides, wild toe taps for touchdowns, fumbles with friendly bounces, and two defenses who did not want to lose.
At the final horn, it was the Broncos on top, winning 24-22 in a hard-fought contest. It was objectively ridiculous.
QB Russell Wilson had another r-word to describe his teammates and the team’s performance.
“The boys were relentless all day,” he told ESPN’s Lisa Salters after the game. “We believe in our team, we believe in who we are. We believe in our coaching staff, and we believe in guys making plays.”
Wilson played as he has played most of the season, which is to say he wasn’t overly flashy, but he was especially efficient, going 24-of-29 passes for 223 yards and two touchdowns, playing mostly mistake-free football. Yet, the offense did miss some opportunities early on to get in the end zone, which meant the defense, which has been surging in recent weeks, would have to hold off a dangerous Bills offense. They answered the bell.
“We made so many great plays tonight, and the defense was lights out,” Wilson said. “Our defense has been unbelievable. Everyone was talking stuff about them, but I know how good they are. I play them every day. They made some great stops.”
The offense did do its part when it mattered most, as the unit was able to answer a strong Bills touchdown drive with one of their own when Wilson found running back Javonte Williams for a short touchdown pass.
“I think offensively we just kept battling,” Wilson said. “We knew we were going to win this game. I told the guys on the last drive, ‘We’re gonna win this thing’, and sure enough we did.”
Yet, after a missed extra point on the Broncos' first touchdown that left them a point shy, the kicking unit once again bumbled, this time holder Riley Dixon fumbling a snap after the Williams’ touchdown, robbing the team of a point yet again. Down six, the Bills had a chance to not just tie now, but take the lead with the clock winding down in the fourth quarter.
The offense, though, was ready to deliver behind Wilson’s drive.
“I just told (the offense) we had plenty of time, to get north as much as you can get, and get first downs,” he said. “I said we’re going to get into field goal range and win the game.”
The team now takes its three-game win streak home to take on the gritty Minnesota Vikings next weekend, a team with five straight victories and showing they don’t need Kirk Cousins to win. The Broncos, now sniffing a potential playoff spot, can’t afford to let up. Wilson doesn’t anticipate that being a problem.
“The biggest thing for us is that the guys are really believing,” he said. “We’re believing in everything we’re doing. We know who we can be, but it’s one win. It’s a huge win for us, but we have a long way to go. But we believe, and we know who we can be.”