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Strong finish imperative for Broncos

The turnaround hinges on the next three games.

NFL: Denver Broncos at Detroit Lions Lon Horwedel-USA TODAY Sports

After starting the season 1-5 and then reversing the curse to go 6-2, the Denver Broncos are the closest they have been to the playoffs since the glory-years of Peyton Manning. December football in Denver is interesting for the first time in a long time and it feels pretty awesome.

Yes, the 42-17 loss to the Lions was a throwback to the aggravation Broncos Country finds all too familiar, but it seems like wins against them have never been an easy get.

What we do know is that the Broncos have three more games left in the 2023 rollercoaster season and, when it comes to opponents, Denver could not have picked three more ideal teams to close it out. The 3-11 New England Patriots coming to Mile High on Christmas Eve won’t be the fabled matchup between AFC juggernauts it’s been in the past, but it should be a winnable game.

Without Herbert and with an ailing Keenan Allen, the 5-9 Chargers may be a tad rejuvenated after jettisoning Brandon Staley. However, of all the remaining games that one could be the most winnable.

Then there’s the currently 6-8 Raiders in the final week of the season. While they destroyed the Chargers last week, giving their obnoxious fans all sorts of false hope, they are still not a great football team and, I imagine the Broncos will be looking to avenge their slight loss in week 1. Raiders will Raider and the Broncos should take this one.

After losing to the Lions, the Broncos playoff hopes are now out of their hands. Regardless of this year’s aspirations, they need to lay the groundwork for next year and beyond. Before them are three very winnable games and if Denver is going to announce to the rest of the league that the doofus-days are over, they need to take care of business and end the season strong.

While the playoffs in 2023 would be a treat, they will be expected in 2024. It’s time to show the NFL that the Broncos are the force that has made the league nervous for all these years.


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