Feeling Foxy and Getting Norved

When it comes to football, and other activities conducted by public figures, it’s easy to think that you know better, or would do better, than the people who are doing the actual jobs.  I live in an upscale apartment complex in Tallahassee, and I always laugh when I see maybe the worst-looking truck in the whole 300-unit place, and it’s got a sticker on the back window that says INCOMPETENT, with the familiar Obama "O."

You may not agree with things that the President does, or says, or believes, but if you’re driving that broke-ass truck, I’m pretty sure you’re not qualified to judge a president’s competence.  Your personal worldview isn’t, and can’t possibly be, a reasonable litmus test for competence, which simply means ability to complete a specific task. 

It was really easy for people of my worldview to perceive George W. Bush as being stupid, due to the way he spoke, and to conflate that perceived stupidity with incompetence.  The evidence was that he did a lot of things we didn’t like, okay?  I know that I am smart, and I wouldn't do what he did, so he must not be smart.  Only smart people can be competent.  Therefore, George Bush isn't competent.  It was easy for liberals, with their highfalutin college degrees, and ability to correctly pronounce polysyllabic words (such as polysyllabic) to make this logical leap.

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Manning named AFC Offensive POW, is rocking the key QB metrics

Peyton Manning has been named the AFC Offensive Player of the Week for his Week 6 performance against the Chargers.

It's the 22nd time Manning has won the award, and the first time a Bronco has been chosen for it since Brandon Marshall in Week 13 of the 2009 season. Peyton completed 24 of 30 passes for 309 yards and three touchdowns, but threw one interception that came back for a score.

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D.J. back at Dove Valley Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Back in August, we preached patience in suggesting how the Broncos should go about handling the D.J. Williams situation.

Keeping Williams on their Reserve/Suspended list cost them neither money nor a roster spot, and if anything, the past six games have shown the Broncos to be severely lacking at linebacker.

And while D.J. still has three games to serve on his DWAI-induced suspension, the good news is that his PED suspension is now over, and he returned to Dove Valley yesterday to start getting reacclimated and prepare for his return.

Because his current ban is alcohol-related, Williams is able to interact with players and coaches, which will provide him 4.5 weeks during which to work on his conditioning and be coached up for whatever role he'll be assuming once he's eligible to practice and play Week 11 for the home rematch with the Chargers.

It's been five years since D.J. manned the Mike spot; doesn't this coaching staff need to find a way to have him on the field with Von Miller and Wesley Woodyard?

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STDL: Denver tops ANS efficiency rankings after six weeks

As could be expected, all of the talk today is about how remarkable the Broncos' comeback was. But, how good are the Broncos overall?

How does tops in the league sound?

Yeah, that seems like a bit much to us, but the two teams that had been ahead of Denver in Brian Burke's efficiency rankings (San Francisco and Houston) both got waxed at home in Week 6, by a combined score of 68-27.

Whatever anyone wants to say about Norv Turner and Philip Rivers, and historically rare circumstances aside, the Broncos still went on the road and beat their primary division threat by eleven points.

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Historic comeback sends Broncos into bye Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Denver now sits in first-place tie with San Diego atop the AFCW, but they occupy the driver's seat by their lonesome.

Both teams are 3-3, but the Broncos for now have an advantage head-to-head and in division record, and a reasonable chance at going 6-0 within the division.

Denver and San Diego enter their bye weeks on different trajectories, and the Broncos will host New Orleans and head to Cincinnati and Carolina, before hosting the Chargers in Week 11. In the interim, San Diego will visit Cleveland, host Kansas City, and head to Tampa Bay.

As devastating as last night was for the Chargers, it's not that hard to imagine them arriving in Denver with another edge in the standings.

But until then, we have an historic comeback in which to delight.

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Broncos perfect art of the comeback

They say practice makes perfect.

The person who coined that phrase probably wasn't talking about trying to overcome 20+ point deficits, but they obviously had someone like Peyton Manning in mind when they did.

After having fallen short while trying to dig out of 20-point holes against Atlanta and Houston, and a 24-point canyon in New England, the Broncos stormed back from a 24-0 halftime deficit to stun the host Chargers 35-24 (GamebookANS box score).

And on a night where John Fox told the KOA guys that Denver had practiced taking the ball away more than any team he's ever coached, the Denver defense ended six of the last eight San Diego possessions by turning Philip Rivers over.

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Gut Reaction: Week 6 - Broncos @ Chargers

Norv [norv] noun, verb, Norved, Norving

1. Proper name, short for Norval, popularized by parents in the 20th century who wanted their kids to be bullied at school.

2. To cause to lose a football game in the fourth quarter.
3. To reverse fortune, especially during the act of playing American football.

San Diego, you just got Norved!   And you witnessed the greatest comeback victory in Monday Night Football history.

Norv Turner wasn't really responsible for today's Broncos carnival (turnovers and big plays were good enough), but that was fun as hell to write.

Now, let's break this thing down in thirty little ways:

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Open Thread: MNF Week 6 - Broncos @ Chargers

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Digesting Broncos @ Chargers, Week 6

Happy Football Monday, friends.  For the first time ever, in five seasons of writing about football, I have two posts in the same calendar day.  I’ve come a long way from writing one 8,000-word ST&NO every week.  Today, briefly, I want to cover a few things that I think will be important in tonight’s game.

1.  Sam Monson of PFF wrote a good article for ESPN Insider today that talked about Philip Rivers’s struggles against pressure this season.  Per Monson:

Since the start of the 2011 season, though, his completion percentage has dropped to 45.3 percent and he has thrown almost twice the number of interceptions (nine) to touchdowns (five). His throws under pressure have also been graded negatively overall by Pro Football Focus for the first seasons since we started grading (2008).

The Broncos have some horses in the pass rush game, and the Chargers are looking like they’re going to be personnel-challenged at OT tonight.  Jared Gaither really solidified the left side for San Diego last season, but he’s expected to miss the game.  Jeromey Clary is pretty terrible on the right side.

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About that “blueprint”

On Friday, I wrote that the Patriots' alleged "blueprint" for beating the Broncos was really a blueprint for beating any defense in the NFL.  I didn't think it all the way through, though, and an important point was left out.

The one-word fast running game only works when it's quiet enough for Tom Brady to call out that one word.  At Seattle yesterday, the Patriots couldn't play as fast, because Brady had no ability to communicate the play as quickly as he could at home.

CenturyLink Field is the loudest outdoor stadium in the NFL, and Brady may have an easier time in stadiums with less noise. But for the moment, I'm going to say that the one-word run game is only something New England can consistently rely upon at home.

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