It wasn’t perfect, but I personally saw enough to have me thinking Russell Wilson and the Denver Broncos offense might be able to climb out of the depths of despair they lived in through all of 2022. Obviously, the offensive line has concerns that we’ve already covered, but looking past that and looking at what Wilson and the passing game looked like when the offensive line wasn’t faltering is where I came away feeling we might see this team do a lot more this season than they did last season.
Tim Jenkins does some fantastic breakdowns of quarterback play and he didn’t disappoint this week with his first review of the 2023 season.
Against the Arizona Cardinals, the starting offense played four series. They ended up playing more than the range head coach Sean Payton said they’d play and that had to do with how the first three drives ended. The offensive line failures was a big part of that issue.
On that fourth drive, that is when we finally saw what this offense could be if protection holds up in any sustained way. Granted, the protection was sustained against the Cardinals backups by that point, but it is worth noting. I loved how Payton kept the offense on the field after that ugly drop by Jerry Jeudy that cost the Broncos a first down. Then on fourth and five, Wilson immediately went back to Jeudy who completely broke the ankles of the guy in coverage on him for an easy 21-yard pitch and catch touchdown.
In 2022 the Broncos struggled to answer pressure, hoping they keep it simple this season.— Tim Jenkins (@TJenkinsElite) August 12, 2023
Last night was a start as Wilson rips this to Jeudy for 6!#BroncosCountry
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Full Film Analysis: https://t.co/K5t3ZQTqTZ pic.twitter.com/nZKabM42zt
Overall, I’m with Jenkins on this game. It was a bit of a roller coaster and there was plenty of bad to go with the good, but I came away from this game feeling the issues are mostly offensive line issues. That’s a big concern, for sure, but I was relieved to see Wilson seeing the field well and making good throws when the line wasn’t completely disintegrating in front of him immediately after the snap.
The good news about the bad is that we’re still a month away from the start of the regular season and the starters are playing in preseason games. These kinks have the potential to get worked out. Adjustments can be made. Payton and his staff won’t be trying to fix things on the fly during a regular season game on, say, Monday Night Football in front of a national audience. Yes, playing in the preseason does appear to matter. To this fan, anyway.