Note: This is the first of a two-part article, the second of which will appear tomorrow at 3PM ET
I was watching some film the other day - a habit that I’ve gotten into. I find that I can retain the issues or points that I will want to write about as long as I keep the watching part to about one quarter of the game. I tend to watch each play until I know what each player on the screen is doing on that play - it can take one viewing or several, but I don’t move on until I’ve got that one clear in my mind. By halftime I’m cranking out notes to keep up. If I don’t take a break by the middle of the third quarter, I’m starting to miss things that I knew about earlier. It’s a simple problem with a simple solution - you do a quarter, write it up, do another, take a break or two, and eventually you’ve got a game. First, you need to find certain patterns, characters, specific plays that illustrate concepts which affect the outcome of the drive, half or game - or find a couple of personalities that might make it into a good Broncography. Once in a great while, you find something that brings all of them together. If you can keep it to 5,000 words or so, you might even get by with it as an article. That’s where this came in. Since I’m always looking for things that might help out or even become the subject of a single article, what I saw recently became more and more concerning as I watched players dealing with injuries, under pressure to improve a weakness that affects the outcome of a game. The starting point was simple, but what it revealed was a major concern.
Last year at this time, the Broncos were 6-0, and all Broncomaniancs felt higher than Brian Cushing on a fertility drug.
A year later, like Cushing, Broncos fans are feeling the crash.
The Broncos are now 2-4. Tied for 2nd; tied for last.
Last year the question was whether or not Kyle Orton could throw the deep ball.
Not only have we found out he can throw the deep ball, but he’s almost become addicted to it.
This week’s awards are easy. The 4-3 formation and all of the variants that Wink Martindale sent against the Jets was predicted by many of the staff and members of IAOFM.com, but the way that Wink used it was a job to see.
Good Morning, Broncos fans! I hope that today you’re feeling at least a bit better than you were yesterday. Josh McDaniels announced yesterday that Matthew Willis would be placed on IR after breaking his foot on Sunday. Meanwhile, he did not have any comment regarding the health status of Eddie Royal or Kevin Vickerson, both of whom left Sunday’s game with groin injuries. Hopefully, McD’s silence means at least that there’s a chance they’ll both play.
After reading TJ’s synopsis of the Broncos/Jets contest, there isn’t that much that I have to offer that he hasn’t already commented on. There is also little to argue, since I find that most all he has to say can be effectively backed up by the play-by-play and by watching the contest again. That said, I’d like to offer a few thoughts that either didn’t come out or deserve to be given even greater support. Here are ten thoughts that I found worth considering after re-watching the game.
By the way, how many of you recall saying that what you really wanted this year, especially with all the injuries, was a team that went out and was competitive each week? Well, this one was a great example of watching what you wish for, because competitive was the name of this game. The outcome wasn’t what we wanted, but Denver was in it to the end. I was and am proud of this team, and I have a lot of faith in them, especially considering where they are coming from.
Note: Each Monday we take a look at a player the Broncos used in a new, creative, or interesting way in the previous day’s game. This week we’re getting a second plate of not a player, but the Broncos’ Strength of Schedule.
Hope is not enough.
This time, though, it might be, Broncos fans—especially after the Broncos just finished the most carnal part of their schedule.
Allow me to explain myself—without writing the word “carnal” again.
Everything is going to rest on the two games the Broncos play against the Kansas City Chiefs.
While you might have already guessed this by looking at the AFC West standings, I wanted to confirm your suspicions through more than just the prism of a 2-game deficit.
UPDATED 9:55AM ET
Good Morning, Broncos fans. I don’t know about you, but I was mightily impressed yesterday by our Broncos. Yes, they probably should have won, and were the better team for much of the day. But they made too many big mistakes at the wrong times, just enough for the Jets of New Jersey to slink away with a victory. The bad snaps by Lonie Paxton and J.D. Walton (two of the worst I’ve seen), the missed kick by Matt Prater (albeit a long one), and the fumble by Knowshon Moreno all loomed large. So did that last pass-interference penalty on Renaldo Hill at the end, although I was fine with the call. But let’s not lose sight of something. This was a team without its best safety and defensive heart in Brian Dawkins, its best linebacker in Robert Ayers, a starting cornerback in Andre’ Goodman, and two key special teamers and backup defenders in Darcel McBath and Wesley Woodyard. They didn’t just play their hearts out and all that cheesy cliched stuff - they played some excellent defense, and did so all game long.
Last week, Josh McDaniels said the Broncos weren’t tough mentally.
Early in the game today they were just plain stupid.
In the first quarter alone, the Broncos managed a stupid personal-foul penalty; several miscommunications in the passing game; a fumble despite covering the ball with two hands; and the most idiotic of all things in the NFL (or high school for that matter) - a botched field-goal snap.
The Broncos’ run defense and the Jets themselves—stupidly turning the ball over 3 times—kept the Broncos in the game.
But at crunch time, on a day in which the Broncos painted the town orange, the color yellow was the stupidest thing of all.
Enjoy the games, and Go Broncos!!!
3:51 ET Update - Lindsay Jones is reporting that Zane Beadles will start at RT in place of Ryan Harris, while Nate Jones will start in Brian Dawkins’ spot at safety. Meanwhile, Mario Haggan will be playing outside in Robert Ayers’ place and Joe Mays will be in Haggan’s spot inside.
Good Morning, Broncos fans! Denver made two sets of roster moves yesterday, adding LB Kevin Alexander and S Kyle McCarthy from the practice squad, making room for them by cutting T D’Anthonty Batiste and RB Andre Brown. Brown’s release could mean that the team is feeling good about Knowshon Moreno’s health. If you’re going to the game, wear orange, and if you’re sitting in the first level, please actually stand up and make some noise when you’re supposed to. This does not include the times if/when the Broncos go for it on fourth down. But you know that, right? (note: This is all rhetorical in nature and an attempt at humor, however poor. Clearly, our readers are well-educated in the football department, among many other topics. They know when to cheer, how loudly to do so, and will clearly be wearing orange if they’re at the Big IF today. Quite frankly, they wouldn’t be reading this site otherwise…)