The word of the week is balance. It's being so overused it's offensive. Oh wait, that's just the type of balance the Broncos are seeking.
Let's talk about offensive balance, shall we?
Here's what the Denver Post notes, comparing "stunning" numbers from the past three weeks to the first 10. In the first 10, Manning averaged 330 yards passing per game. In the last three, he averaged 203 yards passing. That's going from Dan Marino to Alex Smith. In the first 10 games, the Broncos' offensive plays broke down to 63.6 percent pass-36.4 percent run. In the last three games, it's been 45.5 percent pass-54.5 percent run.
The Post also notes that the WRs' "wins before stats" attitude is being tested. Wide receiver heaven? Not so much anymore. "If you're still playing in January and February, it seems like every good football team has some kind of running game," Demaryius Thomas said. "If you get that balance between run and pass, I think we can go deeper and deeper. I'm definitely fine with the running."
There's also less to the Peyton Manning "stunk" angle.
Charted all 20 Manning pass attempts. Only counted 4 "bad throws". One pick, one high-ball, two floaters. 16 other throws perfectly fine.— Vic Lombardi (@VicLombardi) December 9, 2014
Look another big part of this that hasn't been talked about is just the fact that the Bills are pretty good defensively. They knew the formula to beat Peyton - they had the personnel to do what the Seahawks did, and to do what the Rams did. They have a coach who learned from both Bill Belichick and Jeff Fisher, as Jeff Legwold notes. And the Broncos won anyway.
Let's be excited about that. The Bills tried to do what the Seahawks and the Rams did, and they had the coaches and personnel to do it. And the Broncos whooped 'em.
Broncos vs. Bills
Brandon Perna is back with That's Good Broncos for Week 15. This stuff is great (with a strong language warning).
Upon Further Review: Broncos-Bills
The man-on-man blocking from Ryan Clady and Orlando Franklin to seal the outside and center Will Montgomery to keep rookie Stefan Charles at bay is crucial to the play. But right guard Manny Ramirez made the block that helped kick-start the sprint. Ramirez bounces off Charles and notices linebacker Brandon Spikes, who has the play read and begins watching Thompson as he picks his lane. With a quick turn, he delivers a jarring block to Spikes, and then tosses him aside.
Denver Broncos Rewind: Defense, special teams - Denver Broncos Blog - ESPN
Orton and the Bills made a concerted effort to go after Broncos rookie cornerback Bradley Roby plenty on Sunday, but especially in the second half. And whether it was simply targeting Roby in man coverage or getting a receiver into a catch-and-run play into his area, they sent plenty of plays Roby’s way with a variety of receivers. Eight completions went Roby’s direction to Marcus Thigpen, Chris Hogan and Sammy Watkins at various points. The Broncos were in a six-defensive back package much of the time on those plays, which puts Chris Harris Jr. in the slot and Roby in one of the outside positions where the Bills often tried to isolate him. Roby has been playing at a level worthy of at least some consideration for Defensive Rookie of the Year and Sunday was part of the growing process. He battled through the attention, made nine tackles, including one for loss, and forced a fumble. But this time of year he should prepare himself for more of the same moving forward.
Broncos DT Terrance Knighton says Bills safety Aaron Williams should 'show some sportsmanship' | syracuse.com
"First of all, if you hit a guy and it's a football play and you didn't mean to do it, (then) show some sportsmanship," Knighton said after the game. "You know, when you're not that elite of a player to be jawing to our sideline, and if that's your way of getting your team into the game, then I feel bad for your team. Just play the game within the rules and don't come on the sideline acting like your intent is to hurt players because that shouldn't be how it is. Players are a fraternity, and I don't even believe he was the guy that hit him, so I don't know what his argument was."
Fox on Julius Thomas' return: 'We'll see' - Denver Broncos Blog - ESPN
"Just like every week, we have 53 men on the roster and we have to pick 46 to be active for the game," Fox said. "You have to sign documents, there is all kind of paperwork. There are guys who work out before games to see how they look and how they feel. We picked him as one of the 46."
Former Pro Bowl RB Willis McGahee will be taking his talents to...pro rugby. He'll be working out at @TheNRFL Combine Jan 12 in Los Angeles.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 9, 2014
Emmanuel Sanders: Hungry for more
"When I got here I said, ‘You know what? First and foremost, I want to earn the respect and the trust of Peyton Manning,’" Sanders said. He knew what the changes would be: that Manning’s effectiveness is based largely in anticipation and trust, that the ball might be in the air before you make your break, understanding the complexities of the offense. And so the adjustment would not only be physical, but mental as well.
Q&A with Wes Welker
This is your second year in Denver, how has your role on the team changed? "I don’t think too much. I feel like it’s just to go out there and try and do my job and do it to the best of my ability and try to make plays when I get my opportunities and try to help us move the ball downfield and score touchdowns."
Q&A with Eric Studesville
You’ve gotten contributions from several different backs this year. Is that something you expected and how proud are you of players stepping up? "You know I think there’s really probably two parts to that answer. One is that I’m very proud of all of them because we talk in our room about the opportunity and being prepared when that opportunity comes and then going out and performing. I think everyone that’s been put in that position to perform has grasped that opportunity and made the most of it, whether that’s Montee, whether that’s Ronnie when he came in, and now C.J., and we expect that from anybody else that lines up in there. But that’s also kind of the expectation. The expectation is that our preparation is critical to getting ready for the opportunity."
Briefs: Less can mean more for Broncos' veterans - The Denver Post
Harris rolls on. Cornerback Chris Harris remains a media go-to guy on Monday's, providing big and small picture analysis. He talks, but doesn't talk much trash. His statistics continue to show why the Broncos would like to secure him on a longterm deal. He has posted 13 consecutive positive grades this season, according to Pro Football Focus. Should he be in the Pro Bowl?
J. Thomas, teammates take kids on shopping spree
Julius Thomas and a few teammates took about 25 kids from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Metro Denver shopping at a Target in Lone Tree on Tuesday night.
Brandon Marshall and his family, survivors of domestic violence, held a clothing drive to help survivors of domestic violence and the Rose Andom Center.