With the 2023 Denver Broncos schedule released, I thought I would go ahead and go through my annual game-by-game prediction for this team. Considering how horribly over-optimistic I was last year, I tried my best to temper that optimism this time around. So no 13-14 win predictions here.
That all said, I still can’t help myself. Despite trying to force the Broncos into the 9-10 win range, I just see too many opportunities to win games here. The 11-6 prediction below is certainly optimistic, but I also believe it is entirely doable. This has to be the year we see this franchise turn the corner.
Week 1: Raiders at Broncos
Denver has lost six-straight to the Raiders and I just don’t see that happening under Sean Payton’s watch (I hope so anyway!). The Broncos are favored by 3.5-points in the opening odds released yesterday, so we’ll give them the over there as Denver sends McD packing.
Broncos 27, Raiders 21. (1-0)
Week 2: Commanders at Broncos
This should be a winnable game even if the Broncos are a sub-.500 team. Given that belief, I have to give the benefit of doubt to the home team and that happens to be our Broncos here.
Broncos 20, Commanders 16. (2-0)
Week 3: Broncos at Dolphins
Oh how I loathe South Florida in September when it comes to football. No doubt it will be 90 degrees with 1000% humidity and a miserable place for guys used to playing at altitude to play. I think this might be one that Denver gets beat badly in.
Dolphins 34, Broncos 20. (2-1)
Week 4: Broncos at Bears
The upstart Justin Fields and Chicago Bears will sneak up on the Broncos defense in this game and have their way in front of their hometown crowd. Denver is competitive, but just can’t find an answer against Fields to drop to 2-2.
Bears 30, Broncos 27. (2-2)
Week 5: Jets at Broncos
Welcome back, Nathaniel Hackett. Oh yes, its revenge time and the Broncos give the home crowd what they want with a home win over Aaron Rodgers and the New York Jets. No doubt, they’ll win it on a 64-yard field goal.
Broncos 17, Jets 16. (3-2)
Week 6: Broncos at Chiefs (TNF)
15 straight losses. That’s where the Denver Broncos stand against their hated AFC West rival Kansas City Chiefs. Their last win was in Week 2 of 2015, also on the road and on Thursday Night Football. Can they repeat that magic? Unlikely. Patrick Mahomes is no Alex Smith.
Chiefs 27, Broncos 20. (3-3)
Week 7: Packers at Broncos
No Aaron Rodgers. No problem. The Green Bay Packers will likely be “figuring things out” early on in their season with Jordon Love starting, so this should be a good opportunity for the Broncos to pick up a win early on in theirs.
Broncos 26, Packers 17. (4-3)
Week 8: Chiefs at Broncos
Unlike the previous 350 seasons, the Broncos will NOT be swept by the Kansas City Chiefs in 2023. They shock their division rivals and hold on for a win for the first time since Peyton Manning was still playing in the NFL. Can I get an AMEN!?
Broncos 38, Chiefs 34. (5-3)
Week 9: BYE WEEK
Week 10: Broncos at Bills (MNF)
After a nice long 16 day hiatus, the Broncos will travel to Buffalo for a Monday Night Football matchup with the Bills. It would take a massive turnaround by Denver for me to think they can win this game and since I’m going for a respectable turnaround here, I’ll predict they’ll drop this game despite the extra time to prepare.
Bills 33, Broncos 24. (5-4)
Week 11: Vikings at Broncos (SNF)
In the special edition of Something Something Broncos podcast above, Jess asked me what would be our ‘bellwether’ game that would indicate a turnaround in fortunes in Denver. I didn’t pick the Chiefs game earlier, but instead chose this one on prime time. This is the game where the Broncos would make a statement in front of a national audience. That is IF they were indeed turning the corner as a franchise.
Broncos 37, Vikings 20. (6-4)
Week 12: Browns at Broncos
That win in front of a national audience would spark this team to go on a four-game winning streak. In my fantasy, anyway. First, they’d dispatch the Cleveland Browns at home before charging into a three-game road trip.
Broncos 28, Browns 23. (7-4)
Week 13: Broncos at Texans
The Texans show off a strong defense, but Denver is able to come out on top in a battle of field goals to inch their way towards their first winning season since Gary Kubiak was head coaching this franchise.
Broncos 19, Texans 16. (8-4)
Week 14: Broncos at Chargers
The winning season will be secured with four games remaining as the Broncos beat the Chargers in front of their own home crowd. A crowd filled mostly with Broncos fans again. The playoffs are within reach!
Broncos 27, Chargers 24. (9-4)
Week 15: Broncos at Lions
The fun times come crashing back to earth in Week 15 as the Broncos face another upstart franchise that began turning things around in 2022. The Lions roll big at home and secure their own playoff spot two weeks early.
Lions 31, Broncos 17. (9-5)
Week 16: Patriots at Broncos (SNF)
Christmas Eve. Literally, because this game starts at 6:15 PM Mile High time on Sunday Night Football. As much as I loathe the idea of working this game, it’ll end with elation as the Broncos enter double-digit wins for the first time since their Super Bowl 50 title run. What’s not to love about that?
Broncos 20, Patriots 17. (10-5)
Week 17: Chargers at Broncos
I don’t know what it is about the Chargers, but it seems like every time the Broncos beat them in Los Angeles they come back to Denver and split the series. The loss puts the Broncos in a precarious position of needing a win over the Raiders in the final week to secure a playoff spot.
Chargers 30, Broncos 27. (10-6)
Week 18: Broncos at Raiders
I predicted a loss to the Raiders last year. One of just four losses I predicted in that laughably optimistic post. So this time, I refuse. I refuse to predict Josh McDaniels smiling mug walking off the field after beating the Denver Broncos. 11-6, baby.
Let’s ride...err, Let’s go!
Broncos 37, Raiders 34. (11-6)
How many wins do you think the Broncos get this season?
This poll is closed
6 or fewer