Twelve is my new favorite number.
Thanks to the Buffalo Bills' defense not being able to count to 11, all of Broncos Country was Jess Place last night...
Hitting the lowest of lows before rebounding to the highest of highs.
But it wasn’t just the winning that was exhilarating.
Or even the winning against a team once considered among the top two or three teams in the AFC, even the league.
It was doing what we’ve all been bemoaning the Denver Broncos couldn’t do for some time now.
They couldn’t win the close ones.
Except they just did. And in the most dramatic fashion ever - at least since the glory days of Broncos’ comebacks.
Not saying this team is the 2015 Broncos by any means, but this one felt like a 2015 type of win.— MileHighReport (@MileHighReport) November 14, 2023
Let's celebrate on this Monday Night #BroncosCountry
Don’t come at me with your “ugly win” downers and “bad offense” complaints.
That win over the Bills IN Buffalo was nothing short of miraculous.
Despite a missed extra point wide left early in the game, a bobbled snap that led to a second missed extra point and then a missed field goal with four seconds remaining in the game and Denver down by one, for once the Broncos weren’t the team making the costly mistake when it mattered.
A DPI on the Bills on 3rd-and-10 to put the Broncos immediately in field goal range with 29 seconds left, and then a 12-men-on-the-field penalty for the missed field goal gave the Broncos’ sputtering offense new life.
And a dub.
Will Lutz when he realized the Bills had 12 men on the field pic.twitter.com/CRYRoZCS62— Justin Adams (@justinadamsTV) November 14, 2023
Apparently the football gods - and Sean Payton - decided they had seen enough of the Broncos losing close ones.
Because the play that really gave the Broncos the win was Payton’s clock management in the first half “fire drill” to get a field goal just before second quarter came to a close.
On 3rd-and-6 and 30 seconds left in the half, Wilson tossed it to Jerry Jeudy, who was tackled two yards shy of the first down.
With no first down to stop the clock and no timeouts left, Wilson corralled his offense to get off the field as the field goal unit rushed in and the play clock ticked down.
Snap, hold, kick...AND IT’S GOOD!
But for all the crazy plays and multitude of penalties, the Broncos defense never let up and the Broncos offense kept its poise, even when struggling to move the ball.
At the end of the day, Russell Wilson finished with 193 yards passing, two touchdown passes, 30 yards rushing and zero interceptions.
And he also completed a touchdown pass that Next Gen stats said had a completion probability of 3.2% and called it the most improbable completion of the Next Gen Stats era.
Russell Wilson's 7-yard touchdown pass to Courtland Sutton had a completion probability of 3.2%, the most improbable completion of the Next Gen Stats era.— NFL (@NFL) November 14, 2023
The offensive playmakers provided highlight reel-type scores, beginning with Courtland Sutton’s toe-dragging TD and continuing to Javonte Williams’ walk-in-the-park TD.
“We know what we can do,” Wilson said, adding they have to come back and do it again at home against the Vikings next week. “We’re going to enjoy this win, though. We’re going to celebrate. We’re going to have some fun. This is a huge one. This is a good football team we just played. ...To beat the Chiefs, to beat these guys, sets the standard of who we should be and who we can be and who we’re going to be.”
And then the quarterback defended his defense.
“Our defense has been unstoppable the past several weeks. Everybody was talking stuff about them, but I go against these guys every day,” he said. “I know how hard they work and what they do. Man, these guys have been unbelievable, man.”
The defense, which had been atrocious early in the season, particularly Week 3 when it let the Dolphins score 70 points, proved it is no fluke. Despite zero sacks on the elusive Josh Allen, the Broncos D finished with two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, four batted passes and two interceptions.
The Broncos defense have caused HAVOC these last two games— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) November 14, 2023
They faced Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen in those two games. pic.twitter.com/ZumUD32QSu
And now the magic number is also 12.
Is it possible the Broncos can win out and get to 12-5?
Unlikely yes, but after the last three weeks, it does seem possible.
And that’s saying a lot more than we could a month ago.
Credit to Payton for keeping these guys focused internally to turn this around.
“I think Coach Payton has done a great job of changing this culture and really impacting us as players,” Wilson said after the game, complimenting the entire coaching staff. “We’re in this thing together. We’re battling together. We’re fighting together. We believe in us, and I know Broncos Country believes in us, too.”
Thank you God! & Big Dubs! Great Team win! #BroncosCountry— James "PJ" Locke III (@PjLocke4) November 14, 2023
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