Chewing the Fat: Week 3 - Broncos at Titans

The IAOFM staff discuss the Denver Broncos' 17-14 loss to the Tennessee Titans

TJ: Is it just me or does Elway seem to need a million radio and TV shows?

Ted: I don't really have much of a sense of it, being out of the market.  Is he doing a lot?

TJ: The dude sure does seem to need to be in front of the cameras. He has like 5 weekly deals. Perhaps the real appeal of Fox and Xanders is their deference to Emperor John

Ted: Part of Elway's job is definitely a sales job. They should be selling rebuilding more clearly, but I suspect that they think that Elway's love and goodwill will shield their secret rebuilding program

Doc: Is their rebuilding secret? I thought that Elway was pretty up front about a 3+ year rebuilding?

Ted: Em, I think their initial rhetoric suggested that, but that the messaging since then has strayed way away from it. Well, that's a bad start in staying on schedule

Denver receives the opening kickoff but punts it away after six plays

TJ: Nice gain on the 2nd play out of the 122

Ted: Yeah, they got it blocked. That was well executed.  Good presnap read by Orton, and good execution

Doc: Well, at least Orton's leading the AFC in sacks - nice to be the best at something

Ted: That was an example of the Titans cutting down intermediate angles in zone

TJ: That's for fielding that punt, fool!! Britton Colquitt is literally the bomb

Tennessee also goes six plays with two penalties setting them back before punting

Ted: Verner pulled that same thing on Lee Evans last week and got a pick.  It's cool to squat on the intermediate route, but when you get busted on an out-and-up, who's the smart guy then?

TJ: That's something Den needs to avoid today as well. Hasselbeck loves to pump fake on the 3-step and drop it over the top

Ted: If they don't realize it, somebody is incompetent

TJ: Von Miller is a god. He needs to become the face of this team, and now

Ted: He's the best player already

TJ: Sigh, they love to run those trips bunched

Ted: That's a really tough matchup with Cook

Doc: That's where Champ would have been a lot of help

TJ: Almost impossible for a LB to get over on the bunch with man and rubbing. Good deal, penalty will kill it

Ted: Titans got it blocked, but that hold sure helped

TJ: Two penalties will kill a drive real good!

Ted: I like Wilhite off the edge - he gets there

Doc: Man he's got a great corner blitz! Allen has found how to use Wilhite

TJ: It appears to be a play that works. Nice coverage by Mays, did you see that?

Doug: Ted, what makes him better than any other nickelback in those terms?

Ted: It's a definite Gregg Williams concept. Nothing, really, Doug, except for the fact that he's gotten there twice on 2 attempts - he did his job.

Doug: Okay so it’s more that you like the call - not Wilhite specifically

Ted: Yeah, I like the blitz off the slot with an overload, and I like how Wilhite executes the call

Doc: I hope that Cosby can handle the returns - I don't think that Royal can hold up. Like so many guys who try to do both, all he gets is injured

Denver takes over at midfield and scores eight plays later on a TD pass from Kyle Orton to Matt Willis; 7-0 Broncos

TJ: Penalties are fun. Don't ever let them tell you they ain't. Willis McGahee will at least fall forward, boys. Always

TJ: Late hit! That was BS, total crap. Two words: chop block. Yeah, Kuper is getting after them on the very next play.

Ted: Orton tipped the hell out of that screen. It's all on Orton... Tasker is saying it right now

TJ: Damn screen game, got to do better setting it up. Nice pass there, though - that was a laser. He f-ing blazed that throw, Ghost Rider-style. Thanks, Titans for those penalties - really enjoying this drive

Doc: The Titans are so busy being chesty and aggressive that they're forgetting to play football.

TJ: A lot more 122 this year. TD!

Ted: That was good stuff... I like the concept and the throw

Ted: Franklin was lucky as hell not to be called tripping

TJ: Franklin is lucky not to be called for assault on most plays

Doc: Blown coverage, missed a receiver, instant first TD. Forgetting football

The teams exchange three-and-outs before Tennessee launches a nine-play, 85-yard drive that culminates in a 4-yard TD pass from Matt Hasselbeck to Nate Washington and ties the game at 7-7

TJ: Brodrick is such a touch plugger

Doc: Great coverage tackle by Miller to save the 1st down. Denver hasn't done that in years - tackle before the line.

TJ: The Titans may want to get into this game or they will find themselves down 2 TDs

Doug: Good stuff from Quan Cosby so far

TJ: Now would be perfect time for some pounding play action. First empty backfield I've seen all year

Doug: Ugh Fells gotta be ready for that, although I guess it was tipped

TJ: Man that would have gone for awhile

Doug: More terrific ST play

TJ: I love this punt returner for the Titans, he loves to give us EPV

Doc: Colquitt is fun to watch, especially with the kickoffs being a loss now

Ted: He broke a TD against us last year. Ugh, bad contain by Goodman. Goodman needs to not take on a Tackle.  He needs to try to dodge him

TJ: Penalties are so underrated---when they are on the other team!

Doc: They're not playing Denver - they're playing themselves. Ted, it's my sole bitch on Goodman. Too bad, too - he's a hell of a coverage guy

TJ: The story of the game thus far - penalties and timely throws and gap contain. Well that's three, but you get it

Ted: Field position from Colquitt, too - that's been key

2nd Quarter

Doc: All good. Some good performances by the offense and defense. Nice 1st Quarter. Attaway, Hunter

TJ: Jason Hunter best keeper from camp. Smartest move they made. Better against the run than Doom. What a strange game thus far. The titans are at home, and they look like the Raiders

Ted: That was good screen execution by Hasselbeck

TJ: Okay, settle down after the big play. Damn, Woody, good speed

Ted: Good pursuit by Woodyard.  He's better than DJ

TJ: Yeah, no way DJ gets there. This year will show DJ expendable. Do not mess with Bunkley

Doc: DJ's been set up to be the top tackler, and I like him but he's so uneven. Bunk is a beast

Ted: Bunkley needs an extension

Doug: Say, remember those quotes over the offseason claiming DJ was our best player? What a shame - whoever said that gets paid to evaluate football players

TJ: Dawk in coverage is a weakness - one way they got the Ravens last week was to do the same to Ed Reed in man

Denver takes over at their own 17-yard line but on second down Orton's pass intended for Eric Decker is over the receiver's head and intercepted by Titans CB Jason McCourty

Doc: Okay guys, time to get back after it. I don't think the D will hold them off today - the O has to be productive

Ted: Yeah, we need some offense here. Hasselbeck is 10/11.  It's time to start pressuring him more too

Doug: Wow great catch by Fells there

Ted: Really good throw there for Orton

TJ: Nice play fake, too

Doc: Small window, just over his hands, just to Fells. Well done, guys

TJ: I like the way they are not just abandoning the run as well

Doug: As good as that throw was, this one was that bad

TJ: It was open too - crap, that was a great drive

Doc: A few inches over Decker, a little long too. Damn. Yeah, that hurts

Ted: There was too much smoke on it for Decker to adjust well enough. You have to zip that throw, and that makes being a little off with it dangerous

Tennessee takes over at their own 44, but Denver gets the ball back seven plays later on a fumble by WR Kenny Britt, who was seriously injured on the play

TJ: Joe MF Mays - the missile

Ted: Mays, and Miller had the edge. I'm so impressed with Miller in the run game

TJ: Von Miller, is actually All Pro right now. I'm serious

Ted: Yeah, he's unbelievable

TJ: What a joke of a throw. That was simply ridiculous

Doug: Denver Broncos football, folks. Hahaha

Ted: Corner blitz! You have to like when it works like that

TJ: This is the Titans for you - big plays and turnovers are all they got last week too. They don't dominate you

Ted: OMG

TJ: These are ridiculous throws - that wasn't even the primary receiver. Yeah, fumble!!! You deserve this, Matt - for those ridiculously LUCKY throws. That throw by Hasselbeck was NOT even to that guy - it was thrown behind the other man, and he just happened to be there. Both of Hasselbeck's big throws this drive are just pure junk

Ted: Great awareness by Ayers

Ted: I thought Moore made a great play on it. I want to see it again instead of a commercial for a crappy Jim Caviezel show

Doc: Rahim Moore, then Von Miller for the takedown/strip and Ayers on the line and recovery. Nice work by our future stars. Moore is playing so well for a rookie, and Miller's playing incredibly for a vet. Ayers likes moving around - good all around. That was a classic case of a knee ligament tearing, folks.

TJ: How was that dirty in any way?

Doc: Not a bit of it was. Every piece was clean

TJ: Cort talking...keep talking

Doc: Always talking - cheap player - talented as heck, but dirty, too

Denver is unable to capitalize on the turnover, goes three and out and punts it back to Tennessee

Ted: That was clear 8 in the box.  I need a check off. Holding anyway. We'll take that

TJ: Still have to convert

Doug: Seriously? Are you joking? A toss on 3rd and 4? This is not Clinton Portis we have here

Ted: I hate that call - I absolutely hate it. I saw that thing coming the whole way. 12 personnel means base defense. That's when you want to get Fells in the seam

Doc: Exactly, Ted. Why run an outside run on third and 4?

Tennessee uses eight plays to go 29 yards, including a 21-yard run by former Broncos punter Brett Kern following a poor snap from center. Rob Bironas caps off the possession with a 46-yard FG; 10-7 Titans

TJ: Mays is all over the field today

Ted: The Broncos are much better in gap control than they were the majority of last season

TJ: The Curse of Kern - Thanks, McDaniels. That was just fluky - nothing planned about it. The Titans’ penalties are only eclipsed by their freak plays

Ted: It was Carter who missed him

Doug: What an idiot. I mean, you're the punter. Get your ass out as soon as you pick up the first down

TJ: Yeah! Don't mess with BUNK. DO NOT! I'm telling you, you (mess) with Bunkley, you (mess) with a monster

Ted: yeah, he's been a huge addition

Doc: Freaking McBean

Ted: I think that's the stupidest thing ever. You know what I want to see?  A pretend of "we're pretending to snap it" and then a snap, after you get the D relaxed

Doug: Certain guys used to be great at it though, Ted. Like Elway

TJ: One thing Elway did so well was the hard count to be sure - it's a lost art

Ted: I just think it's predictable and a waste of time.  I like the hard count in normal situations much better. Brees is really good at hard counting at random times

Doug: Yeah that's true - it's one thing to do it on 3rd down, another on 4th down. That's the difference

Ted: Call for a 2-sequence cadence in the huddle, one hard count, one live snap. It’s practiceable, and an offense can get good at it

Denver gets the ball back on their own 20 with 1:11 remaining before halftime, but they gain just 19 yards before punting it with nine seconds left; 10-7 Titans at the half

Doug: Wow, Kuper. That was an easy 15 yards

TJ: Kuper can't block, so he fights

Ted: I like that play design - good thought by Orton to try to check one down

TJ: Wow, Clady. Collar much?

Doc: Well, that's $5000

TJ: Wow, Orton checked down

Doc: It does happen - at times

Doug: Haha Finnegan yelling at Franklin

Ted: that was a poor sequence. If I was Franklin I'd tell that little SOB to come get some

TJ: Not sure about John Fox's ability in 2-minute situations

Doug: Britton, kick this one straight out of bounds. This had BETTER go OB - I'll take a 45-yard kick straight out, or even 40

TJ: Yeah, that's a good idea. I'm sure it will - unless Fox is an idiot

Ted: They had a woe is Matt Dodge segment on ESPN this morning

Doug: Wow that's an interesting call by Mariani. Why would you do that? A fair catch means you kneel

3rd Quarter

Tennessee takes the kickoff 41 yards in 11 plays before punting back to Denver

Ted: Prater continues to boom the kickoffs... Still 100%. Ayers was big-time on that play - right down the line of scrimmage

Doc: Man, that's bad. They let him go on the rush and three DBs let the completion in.

TJ: I'd say it's time to bring some heat off the edge

Ted: Agreed, TJ

TJ: Well I guess they heard us, haha

Doc: Ayers tipped it and he still caught it. Glad the next one was pressure - more Wilhite

TJ: This is a good lesson for McCoy: When they blitz you, have a hot route

Ted: Right, throw into where the blitz came from

Doc: McDaniels didn't do that either - I don't know why

TJ: Miller caused that right there with a bull rush

Ted: Harvey had a solid rush, too. McBean has made a couple plays today

Doc: Very solid rush, but he needed to get his hands up. Harvey, that is. Nice to see production from McBean

TJ: Nice play - this defense is fun. I dig this defense, even with a secondary that is shaky. If you think our front line of Ayers, Bunk,and Hunter are bad, get your eyes checked. They are awesome against the run - and if Thomas gets back, it’s trouble. I have to admit, I don't mind John Fox football if you have the D to play it

Doug: Why can't you play D like this and play a real offense?

TJ: Well part of it is the conservative nature, and the strategy of using clock

Ted: That was a really quality fair catch in traffic by Cosby. A lesser return man lets it bounce, and it rolls to the 3. I'd like to see Moreno for a few carries here

Denver executes its longest drive of the day in both time (8:09) and distance (80 yards) with the help of a 15-yard personal foul on Titans DT Shaun Smith, concluding it with a 5-yard TD pass from Orton to McGahee. 14-10 Broncos

TJ: You think Moreno is banged up too much still, or do they just not trust him since he spills so often?

Ted: I don't know.  LJ just said the team has no plans to play DJ unless in emergency - maybe it's the same deal with Knowshon

TJ: Yeah, it's odd they wouldn't give him at least 4 or 5 carries. Nice awareness, Decker!

Ted: That was good execution by him

TJ: You need to measure? Holy crap, Orton sidestepped him! Did Franklin whiff on that guy? Decker is white boy heaven. He reminds you of Eddie Mac, but he's as fast as the real thing

Ted: I like the short passing scheme today

Doc: Orton's playing well down underneath today. Decker's been great

TJ: Late hit? Yeah, boyyyy. Do not facemask the white guy. Damn, he raped Walton there

Ted: Thanks, dumbass. Walton moved his fat ass though

TJ: Nice blitz pick up by Willis - he’s awesome. Even there, check it - falls forward when by all rights, he was at a loss. Holy crap, nice catch - that was just amazing

Ted: WOW terrible throw, nice catch by Larsen

Doc: I can NOT believe that he caught that

Doug: That could be the play of the game. Well, it's the play of the game if we get a TD here

Ted: Macatee - “Larsen is a true FB with great hands”. No, he's a natural LB who has learned to play FB

TJ: Arg, that is the time for play action! Should have run play action

Doc: This is what I mean about play calling. I called that run - stupid play.

Doug: YES Willis

TJ: Suck it down, Titans! Suck it Finnegan!

Doc: TD! What a great overall drive!

Ted: That's what I always say Orton can't do, and he did it.  A precision throw in a tight spot

Doc: He's had a few already today, Ted. Protection is essential with him, but he can hurt you if he gets it. I don't deny any of his weaknesses, btw. But he really did well on the drive, and it's what he does best.

Ted: He has a bad history of hitting those in the scoring area.  I like to see him make a couple today.  He doesn't throw it to the other team down there, which is better than Cutler, but he doesn't find the spots like a Brady or Manning, either. By and large, I'm impressed with Orton's play today

Doc: True on both. He's struggled, but this is what I've seen him capable of. The team is giving him the time and the running balance to manage the drive, and he's responding.

Doug: Em, I don't think anyone has said he's not capable. It's how often he does these things that's the issue

On the very next play following McGahee's touchdown, Von Miller strip sacks Hasselbeck and Derrick Harvey recovers at the Tennessee 13

TJ: Nice stunt!!! Miller time! Yeah, our ball!!! Watch miller on the replay - amazing. The guy is rookie of the year and he's already All Pro. This is truth

Doug: Wow, have to turn this into 7

Miller's in on both turnovers and he's winning the danged game on defense. What a great young player

Ted: Yeah, he couldn't possibly be working out better as a rookie

Doug: But i thought he's a bad fit for the Broncos?!?! Haha

Ted: All these "he's a 3-4 guy" idiots can suck it. He's a great player, and he can make plays in any scheme

Denver is helped along by consecutive offside and encroachment penalties but is unable to punch it in on fourth down from inside the 1-yard line after having 1st-and-goal from the 2-yard line.

Doug: I hate this playcalling. Orton has been on a roll, and we get a humongous TO and just run it twice. Go for it!

4th Quarter

Doc: The whole 3-4 guy makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. And Doug, good point - why, when Orton's been hot, do you limit him to a single play when you're on the doorstep and the run game is struggling for longer yards?

Doug: That's Foxball. I'd also like to see them go for it if they end up with 4th and short. WOW, there it is!

Ted: First down - heady play by Kuper

Doc: Love the lack of discipline

Doug: Ugh, it's not a 5-yard penalty here. Well, i say it's now 4-down territory anyway. Sneak it. Wow, offsides again! This is really incredible

Ted: Kuper for the second play in a row took the penalty the Titans gave him

TJ: The Broncos are flat winning this game, 21-10. Well, I'm being presumptuous. Fake, please

Doug: I'd go for this

Ted: I would go too

TJ: Why not? It's the best EPV play

Doug: I will be shocked if they do though

Ted: Well they really better go now, after wasting a TO

Doc: Can't blame Orton on this one. they haven't given him a reasonable shot, and there were quite a few plays

Ted: No, it's not a function of Orton either way. They're going according to Mason on Twitter

Doug: Okay, so why did they need a TO for that? Me, i was thinking about going for it on 4th about 8 plays ago, and so should they have

TJ: Well, that will make this safety more fun then. Their EPV is still well over 3 points right now

Doug: Yeah it was absolutely the right call, i have no doubt. But once again, I hate that they didn't throw on 1st or 2nd down after the turnover

Ted: I would have liked to see Tebow in there with him for it. It would have given the Titans something to account for

Doc: I wouldn't have disagreed at all - it's what he's skilled and built for

TJ: That is totally the right thing, no question. It probably would have made the Titans burn a TO

Doc: Agreed Doug and all - you just finished a drive with the hot hand that got you the lead. Use it!

Tennessee gets the ball out as far as their own 31-yard line after a personal foul call on Joe Mays before punting it away

Ted: That was a great play by Mays

Doug: And give me a holding call...not that way! Oh, guess it wasn't such a great play, haha

Ted: Shoulder pad, not facemask. Miller, Ayers, Vickerson - big-time run defense. Pressure caused Hasselbeck to throw that a step early

TJ: EPV in action - try sustaining a drive for 99 yards

Doc: Ted, you hit this on your preview - start to pressure Hasselbeck and has well as he's played, he's still going to be a lot less efficient

TJ: Honestly, this is John Fox football to a tee - defense, slow game down, conservative

Doug: I hate it. I mean, it's fine for now, at this stage of a rebuild

TJ: Well, it's hard to get blown out this way

Doc: Orton's still got a hand - we really wasted a deep possession. Too bad, but we got away with it.

TJ: Ohh, tipped pass, whew

Ted: Lucky there - #97 Klug is a really impressive player

TJ: Orton is really doing a good job of at least trying to check down today

Ted: Yeah, I agree TJ. I am sure the coaches have been in his ear about it

Denver is able to pin the Titans back at their own 5-yard line, but Tennessee needs just seven plays to go 95 yards and score on a wide open 4-yard touchdown pass from Hasselbeck to former Broncos TE Daniel Graham. 17-14 Titans

Doug: Wow Chris Harris again! And even better - another HUGE penalty

Ted: Chris Harris is my boy. Hello, field position

Doc: Harris is another top young guy. Nice penalty, Titans

Doug: Oh, Dawkins has to make that tackle

Ted: Wow, that was a breakdown

Doug: Well, wide open TE and easy throw

TJ: was that zone coverage?

Ted: It looked like inverted zone, with Dawkins short, and Vaughn deep - probably Cover 3. But the angle was too tight to tell

Doc: Vaughn is having a bad game.

Doug: And that’s even without Britt around...

Doug: Daniel Graham, how sweet is that for him?

Ted: Miller took the shallow guy, nobody took Graham

Denver moves to the Tennessee 39 but on 3rd and 11 with 1:46 left in the game, a pass over the middle from Orton and intended for Eric Decker is tipped at the line and intercepted by LB Will Witherspoon. Tennessee runs out the clock; 17-14 Titans, final score

Doug: UGH, There it is, tipped pass INT

Doc: That's the game.

Ted: I can't blame Orton for that INT. He was going to the right place with the ball

Doc: We lost this one on the coach's calls on that possession deep in Titans territory.

Doug: Yeah, although Tennessee's penalties did a lot to give us that lead in the first place

Ted: The Titans are a little better, and they're playing at home, and they got some bounces

Doc: All true, Ted. Hard to lose one that close, though

Ted: I didn't love the offensive playcalling either for lots of this game, but there was a lot of lacking execution too

Chewing the Fat