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Instant Reaction: Broncos fall to Texans in heartbreaking 22-17 loss

The Denver Broncos dropped a must-win game against the Houston Texans on the road. Here are some instant reactions to today’s disappointing loss.

NFL: Denver Broncos at Houston Texans Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos were on the verge of a thrilling comeback victory, but a Russell Wilson interception at the end of the game cost them a victory. The result? A heartbreaking loss as the Broncos fell to the Houston Texans 22-17.

While their playoff hopes aren’t dashed completely, today’s loss significantly decreased their chances at securing a wild card spot. Here are some instant reactions from today’s game.

Broncos offense mostly a no-show on the road against Texans

For as good as the Broncos have been in the red zone, their offense has been middle-of-the-pack at best throughout the course of the regular season. Without a strong rushing attack [don’t let the total yards fool you], Denver’s offense was quite limited today. Especially the passing game which looked absolutely abysmal.

I like Denver’s early aggressiveness trying to move the ball downfield. On the first two plays of the game, Russell Wilson tried to connect with Courtland Sutton deep. It didn’t work out and the Broncos were only able to amass three points in the first half on six drives and didn’t convert a single third down. In fact, they didn’t convert a single third down throughout the entire game.

The Broncos have won most coin tosses this year and opted to defer and get the ball to start the second half. That’s a sound strategy, but they haven’t been able to take advantage of that opportunity routinely. In fact, their third quarter offense has been the worst in the NFL. It’s been a problem all year which showed up once again today.

What were you doing, Russell Wilson?

The defense played the great game. Good enough to win. Wilson? He had terrible game and his three second half interceptions were the primary reason the Broncos lost today. That isn’t even a question. That’s just the truth.

Even with Wilson being good in the red zone most of the season, he certainly wasn’t today. And I don’t know if his red zone performance this year makes up for the clear deficiencies the passing game has elsewhere with him at the helm. In the biggest game of the season for the Broncos, Wilson couldn’t find a way to rise to the occasion and make them winners.

Broncos playoff odds drop significantly due to loss

Today’s game had significant playoff implications for the Broncos. A win would give them a better than 60-percent chance at the postseason, while a loss would plummet those hopes to nearly a 25-percent chance. The Pittsburgh Steelers are losing and the Indianapolis Colts might lose too, which would be helpful for Denver. Either way, today’s loss might have been the straw that broke the camel’s back if they end up missing the playoffs.