My dad used to always ask me if the Atlanta Braves had won when I was a teenager. Finally, I figured out who they were, and followed them. As I got older, I started paying attention more to sports. First baseball, then onto football.
Being born and raised in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Michigan Football was a way of life. Ohio State is the enemy, and that’s just how it was. My love for college football grew, and eventually expanded to the NFL. I enjoyed watching the Denver Broncos win the Super Bowl in ’98 and ’99. When I came back from college, I moved to downtown Detroit. Right across from what would eventually be the Detroit Lions new home. I loved football, so I was all about the Detroit Lions.
If you think beating the Giants in Denver is the task, you’d be incorrect. The task is showing that they can play as well in the second half as well as the first. Even if the score is 52-0 at the end of the first half.
Denver is the worst team on third downs in the fourth quarter. How bad? 15% bad. Not only that, the run average and passing completions drop in second halves. Playing with a big lead against the Cowboys may have skewed the numbers a tad, but not that much. Denver has scored once in the 4th and it was a pick six against quarterback Dak Prescott.
Two things are happening. There is a killer mentality missing on offense in the second half of games. When that happens, the defense has to spend more time defending the pass. The offense is dominating the time of possession in first halves. That number drops to only 26 minutes out of a possible 60 in second halves. Split it in half and you have four minutes less than our opponents. Considering all but one turnover has occurred in the second half, you can see why.
Even so, Denver’s defense has done a pretty job. Only four TDs have been allowed in a second half and two were from quarterback Phillip Rivers in week one.
The four interceptions and a fumble lost, all happened in second halves. In their last two games they went from 83% on third downs to 34%. 0 conversions on goal to go.
The 0-5 Giants have a hurt quarterback Eli Manning, are without four starting wide receivers, they have an open gate for an OL and a defense that is ranked in the bottom of the league. They don’t have more than a sliver of a chance of winning. It would take the offense handing them the ball through many mistakes. With New York missing cornerback Dominique Rogers-Cromartie and having to use a previously benched cornerback Eli Apple, yeah….it’s probably not going to happen.
There’s only two ways to have a shot of doing it themselves. First, Manning needs to keep chucking the ball (without any turnovers) and hope a DB slips a couple times to get some scores and secondly, they can generate some kind of pass rush, or at least constant pressure. Also, make quarterback Trevor Siemian throw to the sidelines. Take away his comfort zone which are passes beyond ten yards and the sidelines.
The Giants can’t give up. Be prepared for the offense to come out swinging and put up some points. The second half is when they need to know they have a shot and play like it. In addition, the Giants need to use three tight ends and just dump and go and repeat. Use them for pass protection and as slots. Denver isn’t great against tight ends.
The Broncos need to know that Manning isn’t what he once was, but he’s pretty smart with the ball. All the young defensive backs, Justin Simmons, Will Parks, Brandan Langley and BradleyRoby must mentally be on their toes. No one has been able to run against Denver, so Manning will need an air attack, even if that attack is four yards at a time.
Giants defense have allowed 19, 24, 27, 25, and 27 points in their games. They faced Prescott, and quarterbacks Matthew Stafford, Carson Wentz, Jameis Winston and Rivers. Two running teams and three passing with good QBs. They didn’t play a mile up, though. While first half Siemian could be mentioned with the above group, second half can’t. Fortunately, the second half is when defenses get gassed in Denver.
The key, easier said than done for the Giants, is to keep within a score and harass Siemian. For Denver, the key is to remember Manning is like Rivers. They hang around in games and wait to find your weakness and then they attack it. Making sure the offense shows up in the fourth is how to keep Manning from having time to mount a comeback.
Talk Broncos with Julie on Twitter // @ABroncoNole
After watching the Chiefs and Redskins duel, I decided against what I wanted to write because we’re in a bye now and some changes are needed. Needed quickly. The above match-up felt like what we should’ve seen in Denver. Two bitter rivals ripping each other to shreds, with the quarterbacks leading the charge.
Instead, we saw a lackluster game that was barren of heat or passion. No fights. Only a couple really hard hits (one by safety Jamal Carter). Knock on wood, but our total injuries were a couple sprains. No broken noses, bloody jerseys or pants. This was no WWE Smack Down or Cage Match. It mostly felt like a pillow fight.
I take that back. The Broncos did break quarterback Derek Carr. He joins a growing list of top QBs we have sidelined. Some have yet to completely bounce back. That intensity needs to hit every position group. Not to knock players out, but to be as focused as Von Miller and Derek Wolfe–heat seeking QB misslies.
Believe it or not, I’m super nice to most people and try to do the right thing, which is why I’m glad the Raiders are kind of good again. They let me release my inner she-devil. It’s like The Purge, only twice a year. So what are you hoping happens to Oakland? I’m hoping cornerback Aqib Talib completely neutralizes wide receiver Michael Crabtree so he doesn’t get a single carry.
This is an AFC West division game between two long-time rivals, and both teams are 2-1 with losses last week against teams many thought they should have beaten. This game could have serious implications on any playoff run either franchise hopes to see. I expect it to be nasty and dirty, and reffing could be a factor.
Since taking over the leadership of the Bills, General Manager Brandon Beane and Head Coach Sean McDermott have begged both players and the fan base to “Trust the process.” Trust them during the NFL draft, when they swapped their No. 10 spot with Kansas City and dropped 16 places in exchange for the Chief’s 2018 first-round pick. Trust them when they traded starting cornerback Ronald Darby to the Eagles for wide receiver Jordan Matthews and a 2018 third-round pick. Trust them when they absolutely stunned both the fans and even the Bills players by trading wide receiver Sammy Watkins to the Los Angeles Rams for cornerback E. J. Gaines and a 2018 second-round draft pick.
Beane assured Bills fans that their plan was to do everything necessary to get to the playoffs this year. But, at the same time, they traded away established players for future draft picks. Confused? Just trust us, they say.
The first two games of the 2017 season were a shaky win over a “tanking” Jets team, and an abysmal offensive showing in a loss to Carolina. These did little to inspire confidence in the new regime. Fans were quickly resigned to the idea that the 17-year playoff drought would eventually turn 18.
The perfect trap game? We won’t know until Denver plays a few more. A trap game implies or infers, depending on if you’re reading or hearing it said, that a bad team surprises a good team.
Whether Denver got out played by a better team, or shot themselves in the foot, we will know soon enough. For me, it was about being out coached.
Rick Dennison knew exactly how to beat Trevor Siemian and Mike McCoy either had more faith in his quarterback than it warranted or he got out coached. In my keys to the game with our Buffalo Bills reporter Mary Pesarchick, it was exactly what Buffalo needed to do. They loaded the box and made Siemian throw where he’s not comfortable. The loaded box stopped the run (sort of), but also stopped the short pass game because the receivers couldn’t get YAC (yards after catch). This forced Siemian to take chances that weren’t successful.
They also gave him Emmanuel Sanders for much of the game until he became Siemian’s first read and then starting jumping his routes. The result was two interceptions, as well as two dropped ones, but Siemian was also off on most of his throws all day. This could be because they played Zone and kept giving him one look pre-snap and then changed it post snap.
I asked Mary Pesarchick her thoughts on the upcoming game. Denver (2-0) travels east to take on the Bills (1-1) in an early 1:00 game (10:00 MST). She interviews me for hers, so make sure to read Mary, too.
Jules: Which of your players who may miss Sunday are you most concerned about?
Mary: Left tackle Cordy Glenn definitely. Unfortunately, he’s been ruled out for Sunday’s game. Our O-line is much better when he’s in there (even on a bad ankle) and given Denver’s defense, I’d feel better for quarterback Tyrod Taylor and running back LeSean “Shady” McCoy chances if he was in there.
At the NFL coaches’ breakfast held this week in Arizona, head coach Vance Joseph gave us several insights into how he will run the Denver Broncos, his relationship with general manager, John Elway and where the team stands.
He was, of course, asked several questions from various news organizations about the quarterback position. One quote stood out because of its lack of enthusiasm you want to see from a head coach about the previous starter: “He had seven wins maybe as a starter but you have to go back and really watch the tape and watch how he plays the position. If you ask football coaches about Trevor Siemian they recognize that it takes work to go recognize that.”
Wait. You have to work to see how he plays? What does that mean? What he did was so hidden, it takes extra work to find it? When you add that to another quote about scoring points, it starts to paint a picture. Especially when you know the Broncos had one of the lowest scoring offenses in its history.
Yes, you read that right. Why? Because by bringing Tony Romo in, it says John Elway, and his new coaches, without witnessing a single live snap, have shown they don’t trust Paxton Lynch…or, for that matter, Trevor Siemian. Why have quarterbacks hanging around, that you don’t have faith in?
Twist it any way you want, but that’s the bottom line. The last franchise rookie who was drafted by his team and sat, was Aaron Rodgers. However, unlike Denver Broncos, Rodgers was drafted to replace Brett Favre. Favre wasn’t brought in after Rodgers was drafted. Big difference. Rodgers was meant to take over from a Hall of Fame quarterback. The point is, NFL quarterbacks don’t sit the bench for two years anymore.
Not if they’re the, meant to be, team starter. Brock Osweiler was drafted after we signed Peyton Manning. Siemian, too.
I am over quarterback drama. Oooo ver. Lets just be the franchise with rental QBs and focus on the rest of the team. Defenses win Championships, right? Build up a stout defense, get a rock star running back and be done with it.