Week 3 Open Thread

Enjoy the games everyone, and Go Broncos!!!

Broncos inactives

Andre’ Goodman, Knowshon Moreno, Eric Olsen, Ryan Harris, Chris Clark, Richard Quinn and Eric Decker are inactive for today, while Tim Tebow is listed as the Broncos’ emergency QB.

Colts Inactives: WR Gonzalez, DB Sanders, King, LB Session, OL McClendon, Johnson, WR Garcon, DT Mathews

Big Fat Stat Preview (and pregame limerick, too!)

Here’s a number you’ve probably not heard mentioned leading up to today’s game against the Colts:  158.

That’s the number of times the Colts targeted tight end Dallas Clark in 2009. 

To put that number in perspective, you’ll recall that the Broncos were often criticized last year for throwing to Brandon Marshall almost exclusively—154 times.  Although Peyton Manning attempted 30 more passes than Kyle Orton last year, the number of passes thrown in the direction of Dallas Clark was immense.

Manning and Clark have already decided to attend the afterglow party as well in 2010.  Clark has been targeted 20 times in 2 games, putting him on pace for a similar number of targets as last year.

If you haven’t heard, Peyton Manning likes Dallas Clark.  He likes him quite a lot.

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Uh-oh, here comes Peyton Lard 9-26-10

Good Morning, Broncos fans! I hope you’re all doing well and if you’re going to the game, you’ve gotta make just a bit more noise today when Peyton Manning has the ball. Bring some lozenges along if you need ‘em, because the Broncos need you. Denver will be without Ryan Harris and Knowshon Moreno, while the Colts will be missing starters WR Pierre Garcon, WR Anthony Gonzalez,  S Bob Sanders and LB Clint Session, and backups DB Brandon King and LB Ramon Humber. Champ Bailey is being called a game-time decision but is expected to play.

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The Jesus, The Generator and the Experts - Week 3

This week I continue my quest to answer the one question that has eluded mankind for decades (or a least two weeks):

Are the NFL Experts smarter than a random number generator (RNG)?

To make things even more lively , I included my cat, Jesus Quintana, in on the picks, along with Doug Lee and myself (Doc Bear is too smart for this).  The RNG is simply armed with the notion that, 57% of the time, the home team is a winner in the NFL.  Quintana picks between two quarters as I drop them to the floor.  Doug Lee uses his sharp mind.

I use Kahlua and a proprietary mathematical formula.  If that doesn’t work, I just imagine what team Doc Bear would pick.

So how has the experiment gone after two weeks?

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The days gone by and yet to come

This year, the Broncos found themselves in an odd and difficult situation: they were unable to retain Brandon Stokley’s services. They found themselves with that most rare of cases by having not merely a sufficiency of talent at the wide receiver position, but an excess of riches. While cocaine may be God’s way of telling you that you’re making too much money, having to let go a player who was your best bet on third downs the year before - an area where Denver only managed to convert about 1/3 of their opportunities - is a far more mundane way of telling you two facts. The first is this - sooner or later, every player will fight the opponent who has yet to lose - Time. There was, of course, a second reason.

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Knowshon out, Maroney in Lard 9-25-10

Good Morning, Broncos fans. As everyone knows by now, Knowshon Moreno will not play Sunday after injuring a hamstring in practice Thursday. Ryan Harris is out again, while Chris Kuper, Champ Bailey, Andre’ Goodman and Wesley Woodyard are listed as questionable. Laurence Maroney and Darcel McBath are listed as probable, and both can expect to see significant action tomorrow. Meanwhile, Perrish Cox and Eric Decker were fined by the league; Cox for an ill-conceived throat-slash gesture after his INT, Decker for a late hit on special teams.

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Friday Trivia Trough: Broncos yearly sack leaders

This morning, I promised you a new Sporcle quiz, so here it is. Although the NFL did not recognize the sack as an official stat until 1982, the Broncos have been tracking them since 1970. So, that gives us 40 seasons of sack leaders between 1970 and 2009. Several recent years have seen multiple players tie for the team lead; those instances are marked with a “t” and you’ve got to guess both (or every) guy! You’ll have 7 minutes to work with, and as always, last names are good enough. I didn’t allow for spelling errors this time, because I’m like that. Post your scores in the comments, and as always, no peeking or cheating. Good luck!

Click here for Sporcle quiz:
Can you name the Broncos’ Yearly Sack Leaders?

Knowshon Moreno injured, will not play Sunday

The DP is reporting that Knowshon Moreno is out for Sunday’s matchup with the Colts after sustaining an undisclosed injury in practice today. This leaves Laurence Maroney, Correll Buckhalter and Andre Brown as the healthy running backs who will dress. The Colts have allowed an average of 188.5 rushing yards over the first two weeks of the season.

The curious case of the missing coverage

Denver has been struggling with a single problem for over a year now. We’ve moved to the 3-4 defense, and often run the 5-2 version of it, while increasingly getting the personnel out there to run a 4-3 when the Winkster finds it appropriate. There’s not much question that the team has developed a substantial change in almost every area. We’ve increased the size of the DL (and now they have to get enough time to work as a unit, a factor that is too often ignored by the less informed fan), and we’ve got larger LBs. And although he’s currently injured for this season, we also have last year’s NFL sack leader in Elvis Dumervil, along with 2nd-year player Robert Ayers, who may give Doom a run for his money when the former returns.

It’s no small thing, remaking a team. Every position needs to be recalibrated, thought through carefully, and the best player that we can put into that slot, the one that gives the team the best chance to win, has to be right where he belongs. And that’s where Denver is struggling right now - because when you look over the team, here’s what I see:

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