It was supposed to be the Denver Broncos biggest test on the schedule, but it turned into their most impressive triumph. Coming off an exciting week one victory the Philadelphia Eagles looked like they’d found a quick turnaround, but it’s quickly turned into a nightmare.
14:21- In his prime, Michael Vick is one of my all-time favorite quarterbacks to watch. His play has nothing to do with the dog incident. Vicks ability to run first was always exciting, and he has to be a great athlete to have survived as an unremarkable results quarterback for so much of his career.
14:03- On Peyton Manning’s first completion to Welker, Moreno was wide open for about two seconds for short yards, but Manning is able to make the long completion to Welker of more than 20 yards. Most quarterbacks would have made the play right in front of their nose.
11:55- The Broncos cause the Eagles to jump for the first time. It gets worse as the game goes on. I wonder if the Broncos have an over/under for how many jumps they can get the defense to commit. The Broncos also aren’t earning many false starts themselves, which is the difference between this team now and a year ago.
10:19- If you leave Wes Welker open, then it’s likely going to lead to a touchdown. What was New England thinking by not doing everything to keep Welker? They are struggling so much with receptions. Yes they didn’t know they were going to lose Hernandez and Gronkowski, but the automatic nature of Welker in the middle is unstoppable. Just ask the Broncos defense from the Tebow playoff game. Broncos lead 7-0.
7:47- How much of the Broncos defensive dominance is a result of offenses getting desperate? Vick seemed to have the patience to move the ball against the defense early in the game, but that was non-existent later. I do think part of it is the rhythm the defense enters as well. The opposing score has been consistently inflated by garbage time, but when the game is on the line, the defense gives even a hypothetical lesser Broncos offense a chance.
6:07- Eagles score on a field goal.
5:53- Trindon Holliday is so impressive in the open field that it’s hard to describe. It felt like he had a chance as soon as he got past the 20, with good blocking on special teams. Being able to have Joel Dresson and Jacob Tamme on the Broncos special teams unit is going to give Holliday even more opportunities if teams kick to him. Broncos up 14-3
5:18- The Broncos run defense is so much improved from last year. The run attack did beat them early, but it is no longer an automatic way to move the ball. Their run defense is third in the league, only giving up 74 rush yards a game. Teams forced to throw from behind inflate that number, it’s still an impressive stat that has shored up a hole in this team. This is without Von Miller.
14:18- Eagles settle for field goal. 14-6 Broncos
13:30- Welker falling down leads to a three and out for the Broncos, after a reach for Decker two plays earlier. I am not sure I agree that the Holliday touchdown, that kept the Broncos off the field, is the reason they were out of sync. However, the Broncos have to always be trying to improve in order to not become stagnant. If they need to run plays on the sideline to feel more in sync after long breaks, I’m all for it.
11:06- Broncos surrender first touchdown of the game. If the Eagles hadn’t settled for two field goals early, the Broncos would have been behind and it would change the whole dynamic of the game. Have to give the Broncos defense credit for their earlier stands. Broncos lead 14-13
10:33- Moreno is on a redemption tour so far this year. I think he’s finally lost that label of first round pick because he was really an afterthought for the team coming into the season. His ability to block and pick up the necessary yards is the reason teams can’t double cover the Broncos offensive weapons.
9:26- Could Denver fans learn to be quiet without Manning having to wave them down? We’re a football savvy town… right?
6:06- Manning gets another first down because he fooled the defensive line. It may be my new favorite game for the Broncos. How many times will the other team jump?
5:05- Love the Moreno Rock-Paper-Scissors touchdown celebration, followed by Decker’s leap frog. My friend asked if the Broncos would get fined for that and I told her that the NFL only outlawed specific things and neither of those were as of yet on the list.
4:44- Chip Kelly just looks like an idiot on the sideline. I don’t’ think he’s doing the team any favors. We all know he jumped from a possible recruiting scandal he created at Oregon to take the job. His smugness isn’t working on the NFL level so far. If you want the game to be about the coach, go to college, otherwise, give your team the best chance to win and stop trying to revolutionize a game that clearly has more IQ points than you do.
1:25- Decker is the most frustrating player on this offense. He makes great plays at times, but also can’t seem to convert some of the easier plays. Manning continues to lead the league in drop balls by receivers and that’s with the league’s highest completion percentage. How long until Decker becomes a consistent weapon?
1:07- I praised Moreno too soon. His late hit was a little too gleeful, but I understand why he did that because the receiver hit Demaryius Thomas a little too hard. Manning was not amused though.
:32- With this team, what halts a drives is almost as interesting as what does work. The Moreno penalty, a sack on Manning, and a missed play by Decker that’s what it takes to stop Denver in this game.
11:39- Manning makes the defense jump again on a skillful opening drive. Has anyone hated “Omaha” as much as the Eagles? Probably, but I don’t want people to suddenly hate my articles because I took a cheap shot at Nebraska.
9:59- Decker’s reality television acting is paying off as he’s able to fool the referee to think that Fletcher committed pass interference in the end zone.
9:54- Demaryius Thomas makes his weekly, “I don’t believe how athletic this guy is play.” A one handed catch in the end zone put the Broncos up 28-21.
8:16- The Eagles killed a minute and a half off the clock. That’s not giving your defense a lot of time to catch up.
6:41- The Eagles are down only 15, but the defense just seems defeated. Chris Clark had a great quote this week about how you could see the desperation in the defense’s eyes of the opposition. The Broncos just took the life out of the defense for the Eagles today.
6:30- Julius Thomas used to play basketball is about as good an anecdote as Peyton Manning has a brother named Eli. If you don’t know that he played basketball, you will be reminded every time he makes a catch for his whole career. Do people mention that Russell Wilson played baseball in the Colorado Rockies organization every week?
5:10- Demaryius Thomas runs up the middle after a catch for the touchdown. Broncos lead 34-12.
5:01- Joe Buck casually throws in about the Broncos, “I don’t know if anyone’s going to beat them.”
:22- Welker scores on the right pylon to go up 41-13. Manning would not come back in the game.
The game was so far gone, that Steven Johnson’s blocked punt was an afterthought.
Some thoughts on the Broncos after this win. The Broncos look more impressive on second viewing than first viewing. With a chip on their shoulder from last year’s playoff loss and never being satisfied with just a win, what is going to stop this team? It’s the NFL, and part of being a great NFL team is getting lucky at times, but if luck is taken out of the equation by the precision of this offense we really may say the historically best team in the NFL. I still wouldn’t put money on it, but if any team could do it, this team is trending that way.