Just remember: no matter how bad things are, they can always get worse.
For example, you could be a Chiefs fan right about now. All year long their team gave them false hope, from their acquisition of Alex Smith, to their weak-ass schedule, to their near win against the Chargers with their reserves in Week 17.
Most points in a season? Check.
Most passing yards in a season? Check.
Best team in football? We'll see.
It's playoff time. Everyone goes bare chested and bare knuckles. And we all know what happened to the Broncos last year in the same set of circumstances.
The good news is that last year means not one damn thing; the Broncos are peaking at the exact right time.
Peyton Manning also isn't completely bare this time around. He's had a whole season to get used to the the glove.
It's never fun to kick a team when they're down, unless, of course, that team happens to be the Oakland Raiders:
It's the Raiders again in last place,
the silver and black a disgrace.
There are more high-draft picks
for this team turning tricks
on the streets of the AFC race.
I was uncomfortable comparing the Oakland Raiders with prostitutes for about--let's say two or three seconds. I qiuckly got over it. Now it's your turn, Broncos fans.
In an era of passing gunslingers and greatness, nothing is supposed to surprise us any longer.
Records are broken to be made to be broken--again and again. But let's consider what Peyton Manning has just done.
51 touchdowns and counting--in a Broncos uniform, no less.
Even if he doesn't throw another touchdown all year (which he will), that's over three touchdowns a game, for sixteen games. It's breakable, but you'd better bring your rabbit's foot, a lunchbox, and an army of Pro Bowl receivers.
What's left unbroken? The Broncos hold on the overall number one seed.
Let the records hit the floor, Broncos fans:
Manning is three touddowns shy of Tom
killing the league like a Tebow psalm.
It's the Texans' turn
to embrace the burn
of his fire like an atom bomb.
Give it your best.
It’s no secret why the Broncos lost tonight.
The Chargers converted half of their third downs.
The Broncos converted only a whisper of two.
It’s really that simple. You can take the time of possession, the big plays, the stupid penalties—all of it pales in comparison to the fundamental fact that you can’t string a drive together without converting on third downs. Of course, the converse is also true. You can’t stop a drive without stopping your opponent on third down.
Sometimes you just have to be direct and to the point:
If you turn around and you claim
that the Broncos must play in a game
now twice in five days
then you'd want no delays
in maiming Phil Rivers to shame.
Not quite obscene, but it gets the job done.
Peyton Manning can’t throw in cold weather—unless he can.
That’s the narrative now. Although the temperature hovered around a frigid five degrees for most of the game, the Broncos offense—and Manning in particular—created a blaze so hot, the Titans needed treatment for third-degree burns.
Make no mistake: the Broncos had two plans in this game. The first was to win the game, which they did handily, 51-28. The second was to send a message to the rest of the league: Peyton Manning can not only play in cold weather, he can torch you.
If you’re coming into Denver late in the year, you'd better believe in Santa Claus. That’s because Peyton Manning is Jack Frost.
Sorry, folks. I almost forgot this week's limerick. Here you go:
I've got nothing to say with my wit
except that the Titans will quit
by the third quarter's end
when records will bend
and Munchak will drown in his $hit.
Let it fly, Broncos fans!
Wait, don’t the Chiefs win games like this at home?
Turning turnovers into touchdowns, taking kickoffs back for touchdowns, breaking off big runs—these are the things that define the Chiefs.
It doesn’t matter, not when Peyton Manning comes to town, even when Manning breaks bad for a quarter. Manning’s mind is just too good. His arm (no matter how wobbly the passes) simply follows.
The Broncos now stand in sole possession of first place in the AFC West; even better, they are in complete control of their own destiny. If they want the first seed, they can do more than wish for it for Christmas.