The Denver Broncos win the coin toss again and elected to defer to the second half to give the New England Patriots the ball first to start the game. Denver was 11-4 to start the season on coin toss wins. On the every first snap, Bailey Zappe was crushed by D.J. Jones for the strip-sack to give the Broncos the ball at the six yard line.
First play of the game is a turnover by the Broncospic.twitter.com/IJHLA0ITi6— MileHighReport (@MileHighReport) December 25, 2023
After back-to-back rushes from Javonte Williams set the Broncos up with a third and goal from the two. Russell Wilson dropped back and fired a pass into the end zone where it was intercepted to seemingly immediately negate the early advantage. However, after review it was ruled incomplete and Denver decided to go for it anyway.
On fourth and two, Wilson handed off inside to Williams who was stuffed at the one yard line to give the ball right back to the Patriots. New England would do nothing with with it and punt it away from their own four yard line where Denver would return it to the Patriots 45-yard line for good field position where they would immediately go three and out as well.
After forcing another three-and-out, Marvin Mims Jr. broke loose on the punt return and got it all the way back to the Patriots 25 yard line for a 50-yard punt return.
Marvin Mims with an electric punt return!pic.twitter.com/hiQUnZPA1y— MileHighReport (@MileHighReport) December 25, 2023
Javonte Williams would close the deal with a 4 yard plunge from four yards out to give the Broncos an early lead in the first quarter.
Broncos 7, Patriots 0.
New England’s offense woke up from there and were driving deep into Broncos territory by the end of the first quarter.