Optimism in Broncos Country has surged since the Denver Broncos beat down the Kansas City Chiefs a little over a week ago. That optimism has remained through the Bye Week despite all of the AFC West teams winning and Denver still ranking 15 out 16 AFC teams overall in the playoff hunt.
To climb out of that hole, they will need to get on a very serious run in their final nine games of the season and it won’t be easy given where they are heading this week. In any case, let’s review the Broncos remaining schedule and predict the outcome of every game. And yes, I’m in an optimistic mood today.
Broncos 2023 schedule
|Wk||Date||Opponent||Time (MT)||TV||Final Score||Record|
|Wk||Date||Opponent||Time (MT)||TV||Final Score||Record|
|1||9/10/2023||vs. Las Vegas Raiders||2:25 PM||CBS||16-17||0-1|
|2||9/17/2023||vs. Washington Commanders||2:25 PM||CBS||33-35||0-2|
|3||9/24/2023||at Miami Dolphins||11:00 AM||CBS||20-70||0-3|
|4||10/1/2023||at Chicago Bears||11:00 AM||CBS||31-28||1-3|
|5||10/8/2023||vs. New York Jets||2:25 PM||CBS||21-31||1-4|
|6||10/12/2023||at Kansas City Chiefs (TNF)||6:15 PM||Prime Video||8-19||1-5|
|7||10/22/2023||vs. Green Bay Packers||2.25 PM||CBS||19-17||2-5|
|8||10/29/2023||vs. Kansas City Chiefs||2:25 PM||CBS||24-9||3-5|
|10||11/13/2023||at Buffalo Bills (MNF)||6:15 PM||ESPN||24-22||4-5|
|11||11/19/2023||vs. Minnesota Vikings (SNF)||6:20 PM||NBC||21-20||5-5|
|12||11/26/2023||vs. Cleveland Browns||2:05 PM||FOX||29-12||6-5|
|13||12/3/2023||at Houston Texans||11:00 AM||CBS|
|14||12/10/2023||at Los Angeles Chargers||2:25 PM||CBS|
|15||12/16/2023||at Detroit Lions (Saturday)||6:15 PM||NFL Network|
|16||12/24/2023||vs. New England Patriots (SNF)||6:15 PM||NFL Network|
|17||12/31/2023||vs. Los Angeles Chargers||2:25 PM||CBS|
|18||TBD||at Las Vegas Raiders||TBD||TBD|
Week 10: Denver Broncos at Buffalo Bills (MNF)
This is going to be a tough one to overcome after gaining so much momentum and confidence before the Bye Week by beating the Chiefs. The Buffalo Bills are in a rut and will be pretty desperate for a win in front of their home crowd in prime time. I’ll be elated if Denver pulls off the upset, but I think at minimum they need to make this a close and competitive game. Win or lose they come out with a positive if that’s the result.
Record Prediction: 3-6
Week 11: Minnesota Vikings at Denver Broncos (SNF)
Here’s where I think the Broncos late season push actually begins. They will face Josh Dobbs who has yet to learn the Minnesota Vikings playbook and the Broncos defense is much better than the Atlanta Falcons defense. This being on prime time, I think Denver shows up and beats these Vikings.
Record Prediction: 4-6
Week 12: Cleveland Browns at Denver Broncos
What if I told you the Cleveland Browns are +42 in the net point differential on the season? That’s fifth-best in the AFC and their defense has been really good. If Denver is truly going to turn their season around, they absolutely must win this game at home. Since we’re in optimistic mode today, that is exactly what they’ll do.
Record Prediction: 5-6
Week 13: Denver Broncos at Houston Texans
To start a three-game road trip, the Broncos will need to beat the weakest team in that stretch and that has to be the Houston Texans. While C.J. Stroud is coming off one of the best rookie performances in NFL history, he is still a rookie and the Broncos defense should win that battle most days. Let’s get Denver back to .500 here.
Record Prediction: 6-6
Week 14: Denver Broncos at Los Angeles Chargers
Here’s where I think things could get dicey for the Broncos late season push. They will be in the middle of a three-game road trip and having to travel to the west coast for a division game then to the east coast against a good Detroit Lions team. I’m being optimistic, but I see a little bit of a stumble here. They surely won’t win out.
Record Prediction: 6-7
Week 15: Denver Broncos at Detroit Lions
After dropping a tough game to the Los Angeles Chargers the week before, they get absolutely steamrolled by the fast Lions teams. The cross-country flights just took their toll on the team and Sean Payton will need to hit the reset button for the final three games of the season.
Record Prediction: 6-8
Week 16: New England Patriots at Denver Broncos (SNF)
With things looking like they might be slipping away, the Broncos defense comes out and dominates Mac Jones and the New England Patriots. The prime time win was just what the team needed to regain some of the confidence lost during the long road trip and set the stage for a good finish.
Record Prediction: 7-8
Week 17: Los Angeles Chargers at Denver Broncos
With the playoffs at stake, Justin Herbert plays for the tie and losses again. The Broncos win actually pushes the Chargers into a .500 tie with the Broncos with one game remaining. Both teams need a win and some help in Week 18 if they hope to make the playoffs.
Record Prediction: 8-8
Week 18: Denver Broncos at Las Vegas Raiders
The Las Vegas Raiders got their Josh McDaniels ‘dead cat bounce’ last week, but that win does little to change the problems with the roster that McD annihilated in his short tenure there and they will likely need a few seasons to fix all of the problems. By the final week of the season, they are a five win team and Denver easily closes out the season with another win.
Record Prediction: 9-8
With that finish, the Broncos still end up missing the playoffs. The AFC ended up with just too many good teams and Denver didn’t secure enough tiebreakers to sneak in as the seventh seed. That said, any 8-9 win finish by this team after the way they started and I’m looking forward to 2024 and beyond. All we need is for this franchise to turn that corner and its game on. Here’s to a strong second half season by the Denver Broncos!
Disclaimer: Don’t @ me two months from now about how wrong I was. This was a fun what if kind of prediction post on a Bye week.