Broncos Win By Losing
Well, it was a really fun ride. Stop laughing, I’m serious. It was a blast going 7-1 down that magical stretch when things just started falling into place for the Denver Broncos. Unfortunately every lucky streak — and that’s what it was, don’t kid yourself — must come to an end at some point. After the Patriots game I still thought that the Broncos would win out, make the playoffs, and could even win a playoff game at home. I see nothing. And if I’m being honest, I have no desire to see this version of this team playing an obviously superior Pittsburgh or New England in the “real season” of the playoffs.
I actually rooted for the Broncos to lose the season finale last year, and coming up short against San Diego likely made the difference between Denver landing Von Miller at #2 rather than someone else at #5 or #6. I'm more interested in sustained success and SB titles than a win here and there, so I can certainly see where Sam is coming from here. And, there's always the (likely) chance that the bar be set inappropriately high next year by both fans and punditry should the Broncos win the West:
They were a playoff team last year. Couple more pieces and they're contenders.
But Tebow carried them to the playoffs. Of course he's the future!
There is value in making the playoffs, especially in the form of experience for young players and cash in Mr. B's pockets. But what if the Broncos are just this year's version of the 2010 Chiefs? Would a division title now be more costly down the road?
It should be noted, by the way, that Tebow’s most recent falter against the Bills, which included four interceptions, occurred after the Pro Bowl vote. Tebow’s season was instead judged on his seven wins and two losses (to playoff teams Detroit and New England).
While he might forever muster a respectable portion of the fan vote (which accounts for one-third of the overall selection process), attaining the vote of the players and coaches (which each also account for one-third) will be a different story.
Romeo Crennel to use Chiefs' starters
Few people outside Oakland would begrudge the Chiefs for taking it easy against Denver. Crennel doesn’t expect that to be the case, though. He plans to put his best team on the field rather than get some young players in for the experience, guys like rookie quarterback Ricky Stanzi who have spent the majority of the season on the practice squad or the sideline.
“Every game that you play, the guy has to look in the mirror and know he’s giving his best effort to try to win the game,” Crennel said. “I think that’s the case Sunday with Denver, every guy on the team, the coaches included. Like I said, it’s never one guy.”
It's wishful thinking to suggest that Romeo Crennel approach Week 17 against the Broncos as if it doesn't matter.
It's also comical. Hey Romeo, um, listen, would you mind playing your practice squad quarterback this game, you know, for experience? We know you want to coach again in this league and want to win bad, but let's pull back on that fire a bit and let Ricky Stanzi play this thing out. He could be the real deal.
Tracking Tebow, Week 16: Defenses are catching on
A week after New England worked to contain Tebow in the pocket and forced him to win the game with his arm, Buffalo perfected the game plan. The Bills usually rushed four, dropped seven into coverage, made sure Tebow didn’t break the pocket for long runs, and made him squeeze throws into tight windows, often with disastrous results.
But don’t mistake the Bills’ game plan for Tebow reverting to the form that had him embarrassed by the Lions back in October. He continues to improve, even if incrementally. The problem: as defenses become more comfortable recognizing and attacking the Broncos’ option scheme, Denver will need to find ways to adapt. And that will mean using Tebow in more conventional ways. Can they (he) do it?
Miller's production has slipped after injury
Miller, the No. 2 overall draft pick, needs three sacks Sunday at Kansas City to tie Jevon Kearse’s rookie record of 14.5 sacks, set in 1998. San Francisco’s Aldon Smith, the No. 7 overall draft pick, has 14 sacks. He has 6.5 sacks since Miller’s injury. It will be interesting to see who wins the NFL defensive rookie of the year award. Miller has been on the field more than Smith and has he had a bigger impact throughout the year, but Smith’s sacks numbers may be difficult to deny even though Miller has 29 more tackles than Smith.
Williamson raises a fair point that wouldn't have been even remotely possible three weeks ago. As we know, and as John Elway confirmed this morning, Miller's hand injury has affected his sack totals. But do sack numbers mean more than overall production? Let's just quickly throw down the lines of both players"
|Name||Team||Snaps||QB Sacks||QB Hits||QB Pressures||Tackles||Assists||Stops|
I could have easily turned all of these into rate stats (sacks/snap, etc.), but they would essentially show the same thing: Aldon Smith has been more productive as a pass rusher, while Miller has been more productive overall. We're clearly biased here at IAOFM. We think Miller is the next Derrick Thomas, but with the chops to also play the running game. Does that mean he's Defensive Rookie of the Year? In our minds, it certainly does.
Bill Maher Slams Tim Tebow on Twitter
On Saturday, Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos had a very bad day as they lost to the Buffalo Bills 40 - 14. That led so-called comedian Bill Maher to tweet: “Wow, Jesus just f****d #TimTebow bad! And on Xmas Eve! Somewhere in hell Satan is tebowing, saying to Hitler ‘Hey, Buffalo’s killing them.’
Fox News’ Eric Bolling responded: “Bill Maher is disgusting vile trash. I can’t even repeat what he just tweeted about Tebow..on Christmas Eve. #straighttohellBill”
Eventually I'll learn not to dip my toe into these things, but until then, here we go. I get satire; I get hyperbole; in fact, I engage in a fair amount of it myself. Sometimes, I'll even get a reader who emails me upset until I remind them that they shouldn't read every headline I write literally until reading the story.
When you're a young and impressionable man, they send you--cleanly shaven, of course--to Satire School. On the first day, before they assign you lockers, they write on the chalkboard the fundamental rule: No Hitler jokes.
12-26 The John Elway Show Part 1
“...turnovers kind of got to us again…we were in the football game, and the next thing we knew, we were kind of out of the football game…execution hasn’t been as good in the last couple weeks, but we haven’t done anything to help ourselves with turnovers.”
Elway said little of significance (as you'd expect) in this interview. He's probably just glad it's his last of the year with Vic and Gary. Here are a few of the nuggets:
The biggest revelation to me from this interview is that the Broncos don't give Tim Tebow a lot of audibles. Elway also confirmed something we've suspected all along--Von Miller really doesn't like playing with a cast on his hand.
Although we poke a little fun at Vic and Gary from time to time, props to them for putting Elway on the spot. The Broncos said they wanted to be more transparent this year. Vic and Gary made them live up to that promise.
New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham has won many fans this season. But perhaps none greater than 16-year-old Alex Newman. The New Orleans native learned about football from her dad when she was only 8, and she was instantly hooked on her home team. Dad also taught her the guitar, and this Christmas, Alex decided to put those skills to use crafting a tribute to her favorite Saint. On Saturday morning, Stella woke her big sister to tell her some big news. The video made its way to Graham, who made sure the girls got tickets to Monday night’s game against the Falcons.
After leg amputation, QB’s spirit inspires even Tebow
“The doctors told me a couple times that I wasn’t going to get amputated, so I was feeling pretty good until Friday,” Rainey, who has received a signed, personalized Alabama jersey from Nick Saban, among other gifts, told the AP. “I don’t remember a lot, but I just remember them telling me it was going to get amputated and I was just like, `All right, well, that sucks.”’
This story has been out there a few days thanks to Tim Tebow. Props to Tebow for taking an interest.
You've got to love the kid's reaction to his situation. I've seen worse reactions (me included) to a Broncos loss.
Not only does this story keep sports in the proper perspective, it gives me a new mantra after the Broncos fall in a close game: "All right, well, that sucks."
Video: Bengals’ Jerome Simpson pulls off the TD flip of the decade
Best flip since Gerald Willhite: