The highlight of today's game came at halftime when the Broncos put Rod Smith into their Ring of Fame.
The rest of the Broncos were in the locker room. Otherwise, they would have been down twenty to start the third quarter.
Peyton Manning didn't throw three interceptions today, but he still needed to rally late for the Broncos to have any sort of chance.
This week, the defense put themselves in a hole, as Matt Schaub and the Texans took both a sledgehammer and a surgeon's scalpel to the Denver defense. Dropped passes on offense, mental errors (45 yards in personal fouls on one drive alone), and J.J. Watt took care of the rest.
The game was a lot less exciting than the final score (and the Broncos) would admit. The truth is this team is still in transition, still adjusting to themselves, and still trying to figure out their basic philosophy. Are they a no-huddle team? Are they a blitzing team?
Check back in a few weeks and we'll have a better idea. Perhaps the Broncos can play well on both sides of the ball for once. Thankfully, the AFC West will still be there for the taking.
Peyton Manning said the Broncos are a work in progress.
Perhaps we should have believed him.
In Week 1, we all caught a case of Coltsahanta Virus--the feeling of invicibility that results from having Peyton Manning under center. Unfortunately, it's a virus that hasn't been communicable since 2009.
It would be easy to blame this loss on a group of replacement referees that blew call after call after call--they actually referred to the Falcons as "red" at one point during a penalty. The faster the league replaces the replacements, the better.
Yet, this loss is mostly Manning's piece of work. You can't spin the loss any other way. Despite a flurry of activity late in the fourth quarter, Manning floated several passes, turned the ball over three times in the first quarter, and often checked into poor audibles.
Get back to work, Peyton. I believe you now.
Two roads diverged in a wood.
I took the one Tracy Porter traveled by.
And that made things completely awesome.
There was this other guy named Peyton Manning, of course.
He got his 400th (and 401st) career touchdown pass as a Denver Bronco. He also took a no-huddle chainsaw to the forest of Steelers defenders and cut his own path.
The deafening sound you heard wasn't the chainsaw, though. It was the sound of 76,823 maniacs screaming their team to victory.
We can move on to more important things--like destroying the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Before we do, though, let's take some time (just a little) to comment on tonight's game.
Thirty thoughts. No categories. Let's get freaky dirty.
The Broncos won't win all their games this year.
But they'll be in every game.
This afternoon, the Broncos showed their starters can dominate anyone. The 49ers--already crowned the kings of the NFC by the national media, as they kiss the ring of Jim Harbaugh--could barely move the ball against the Broncos' first-string defense. And Peyton Manning and Co.? They only shredded the 49ers starters like they were straight out of the Oakland Raiders' prison league.
It's the depth that scares the hell out of me.
The Broncos are only deep at a few positions. Unfortunately, I can't remember what they are right now. Let's just hope the the starters can make it through sixteen games and go about our business for now.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.
It was a great first half, it was a second half I can't remember.
Week 2 of the preseason is officially in the can. And what have we learned?
Depth could be an issue with the Broncos in 2012. Injuries have already taken their toll.
It seems it's the scoreboard's turn now.
They came. They saw. They didn't get injured.
There was also a little thing called Peyton Manning's return to football. Other than that, it was just another preseason game.
Excitement reigns in Broncos Country. The Broncos just destroyed the Chicago Bears in every aspect of the game; their rusty Hall of Fame quarterback is only going to get better; their defense already looks to be a huge upgrade.
Yet, preseason is preseason for good reason. It means little more than an opportunity for Xavier Omon to heat up message boards all across the nation--for at least a week.
Cautiously? More so.
Let the training camp intrigue officially begin: the Denver Broncos just released their first depth chart. In the spirit of the coverage of the Olympic Games, let me offer you a SPOILER ALERT before you read the next sentence just in case you wanted to wait until Thursday's preseason game.
Peyton Manning held off Caleb Hanie at quarterback.
Now that we've gotten that out of the way, don't read too much into this depth chart (which is what we're about to do). It's only the first of many depth charts. In other words, it's a working document.
Now, let's experience some irrational exuberance, or in some cases, rational melancholy.
Your Gut Reaction begins. And remember Rule #7: Gut Reactions will last as long as they have to.
I'm not an attorney¹, and we obviously don't know the circumstances here, but this case appears to have the potential to be very tricky for the Miami police and State's Attorney's office. Typically, when some black guy is involved in an altercation, the cops will throw him in jail, and the prosecutor will overcharge the case.
What I mean by that is for someone like me - as a middle-class white guy who can afford a competent attorney - the charge might be disorderly conduct from the start, I pay a little fine and take anger management, and the misdemeanor falls off my record.
As you've probably heard by now, the great science fiction writer Ray Bradbury passed away today at the age of 91. Since I (mostly) stay on topics that have some relation to football or a football-related event, I won't rehash the greatness of Bradbury here. What I will do, however, is pass along a quote from Bradbury that you'll find useful in your own life:
The Muse must have shape. You will write a thousand words a day for ten to twenty years in order to try to give it shape, to learn enough about grammar and story construction so that these become part of the Subconscious, without restraining or distorting the Muse.
This quote comes from the book Zen and The Art of Writing.