Injury Report: Woodyard doubtful; Seymour out

LB Wesley Woodyard is listed as doubtful for tomorrow's game at Oakland, and is likely to be replaced in the starting lineup by D.J. Williams. WR Brandon Stokley is questionable, while five other Broncos are probable.

Woodyard suffered an ankle sprain last week, which forced Williams and Danny Trevathan (21 snaps each) into increased action. The absence of Stokley resulted in more targets for Jacob Tamme, who caught a season-high nine passes against Tampa Bay.

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You Got Served: Get ready for the return of head coach Josh McDaniels

Happy Wednesday, friends.  Yesterday, a decent brouhaha erupted in my former stomping grounds of Cleveland, Ohio.  It’s pretty widely assumed that, with the change in ownership, head coach Pat Shurmur and general manager Tom Heckert will be let go at season’s end.

New owners like to do their own thing, and when Jimmy Haslam hired Joe Banner to be team president, he brought in a guy who is going to certainly change the structure of the organization.

Banner was very successful in Philadelphia as the guy who ran the business end of things, and who oversaw contracts, financial, and cap strategy.  I would expect that will be his role in Cleveland as well, and I'm interested to see how he comes out on Shurmur and Heckert, both of whom he knew from Philadelphia.  If the Philly rumor mill is to be believed, the organization wasn't all that sad to see Heckert leave for Cleveland when he did, and that would seem to match the color of the smoke that's now coming out of the chimney.

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Raiders Week not quite the same Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Raiders Week has something of a different feel this time around, at least to us.

For one, the time between games is only half what it normally is - so there's hardly time to get frothed up about the classic rivalry. And of course, it's also softened by the Raiders not being a very good team.

But there's also the matter of feeling sympathy on multiple levels for Oakland's head coach.

Dennis Allen was Denver's DC for only a season, but the job he did in helping turn the Broncos defense around, his intelligence, and well-spokenness all combine to make us root for the man on some level, even if he's leading the Silver and Black.

Sadly, Dennis lost his 66-year-old father Grady this week, and for that, our thoughts go out to him and his family. Of course, John Fox and Champ Bailey offered the same on the part of the Broncos.

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Broncos’ 2013 opponents nearly set

Week 13 saw three teams (Denver, New England, Atlanta) clinch their divisions, with Houston also sealing a playoff spot.

This marks the earliest point at which any NFL season has seen either three division races end, or four playoff tickets punched, and two of them happened concurrently - as soon as Greg Schiano was done fanning his tail feathers (the Tampa Bay loss clinched the NFCS for Atlanta).

That the Broncos and Pats clinched their divisions ensures that Manning/Brady 14 (or 15, if they meet in this year's playoffs) will take place next season at Foxboro, barring injury or retirement for either.

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Ex-boy band stars not welcome at Qualcomm Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Here we are, two days after the team nailed down a big win and the AFCW title, and they have to head out on the road and play again in two days from now.

Welcome to the NFL in 2012.

It's a brutal request of these players, to put their bodies through the punishment of two regular-season games within the span of five days. Two games in seven or eight days is difficult enough - to recover from the first game's physical and emotional toll, to prepare for the coming matchup, to travel, and suit up again. For his part, John Fox says he won't be putting his guys in full pads this week.

But at least it's the Raiders, and the bright side is the Broncos will afterward have ten days to heal and get ready for the biggest matchup left on their schedule - a road trip to Baltimore and a fight for what is likely at best the AFC's #2 seed.

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Open Thread: MNF Week 13 - Giants @ Washington

Andy BenoitDoug Farrar, Sam Monson, and Benjamin Hoffman preview the matchup; here are the inactive lists. Enjoy the game!

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Cracking the Zombie code

I love freedom.  I’m not going to cry about it like Glenn Beck, but I am feeling a little verklempt today, after reading a breathtakingly stupid comment on TJ’s Tebow post, and it has stirred up my patriotism for American freedom.  I know what some of you right-wingers are thinking – liberals don’t like freedom, and they aren’t patriotic.

You’re free to believe that stupidity if you want to.  (I’d like to see you serve four years in the military.)  The commenter on TJ’s post is free to call us religious bigots if (s)he wants to.  If (s)he’d gone further over the line, we’d feel free to delete their comment and ban them.  Freedom is a good thing; nobody is going to throw any of us in jail for doing any of those things.

This is not going to be much about football.  I’m free to write an article about another topic, and you’re free not to like it.  Incidentally, I couldn’t care less whether you do or don’t, so spare me the whining about it.

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Anonymous Broncos: TYJE

They say you should never kick a man when he's down he's deactivated due to a rib injury.

I guess several of your Denver Broncos are making an exception, though, for a guy that did thisthisthisthis, and finally, this.

"When Tim was here we saw the issues up close," said the Broncos player who, along with other players, asked not to be identified. "The Jets didn't, and now they are seeing the problems, too."

"Of course we're comparing this year to last year," said another player. "This year we won the division with four games left. That's all Peyton Manning. If Tebow was here, we'd still be squeaking out wins, or losing games we shouldn't be losing. The division would be coming down to the last game.

"I've been following Tim in New York and I feel horrible for him. Everyone here, I think, wants the best for him. He's a good guy. But you can't turn Tim into something he's not, and he's not really an NFL quarterback. He's more of a gimmick player."

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These Broncos are for real Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! The 2011 Broncos needed 16 games, three tiebreakers, smoke, and mirrors, to win the AFCW, and did so while topping the 30-point mark just two times, and being outscored by 81 points.

Peyton Manning's Broncos (9-3) require no gimmicks or common opponent calculations, and have already clinched the division outright after just 12 games, thanks to their 31-23 victory (Gamebook, ANS box score) over the visiting Bucs (6-6). Through the regular season's first three quarters, Denver has already scored 30 or more points eight times, and have outscored their opponents by 105 in total.

It took Manning only 12 games to set a new Broncos single-season standard for touchdown passes, with one to Mitch Unrein (ZOMG) and two to Demaryius Thomas (what else is new?) giving him 29 on the season. The old Denver record had been 27, shared by John Elway (1997) and Jake Plummer (2004).

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Gut Reaction: Week 13 - Broncos vs Bucs

Last year it took the Broncos until Week 17 to win the division.

What a bunch of drama queens.

This year, the Broncos clinched the division so fast, there was still time to hit the links.

Golf, anyone?

Okay, how about a seven-game winning streak?

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