1. One for Peyton
Denver fans remember Pat Bowlen’s famous words after the Bronco’s Super Bowl XXXII victory. Imagine John Elway, the oft second guessed turned genius GM, taking the podium and proclaiming “This one’s for Peyton.” That would be grand.
2. A Manning Vs Brady Rematch
Tom Brady added to his win total in October when the Broncos visited the Patriots. How about round two? This time for a Super Bowl berth, to make things even better, how about in Denver where the Broncos are 13-3 historically in the playoffs.
3. More Von Miller Hardware
The returning Defensive Rookie of the Year is having a phenomenal sophomore campaign. So phenomenal in fact that he is overshadowing Elvis Dumervil who himself has a respectable 8 sacks in 10 games. While Von has some pretty stiff competition in J.J. Watt and Charles Tillman for Defensive Player of the Year, there is no doubt that Miller is a problem for opposing offenses. Just ask Philip Rivers, 4 of Von’s 13 sacks have been against him.
4. Turnover-free Football
The notion that winning cures all could not be more applicable than it is to this year’s Denver Broncos. Over their five game winning streak, the Broncos have given the ball away 10 times. Granted, they have 13 takeaways over the same time frame but thank Philip Rivers for that, his four picks and two fumbles were what got the streak going in the first place. A little perspective here, the Broncos trail only the Eagles, Chiefs and Redskins for most fumbles in the league. Those teams have a combined record of 8-22. Take care of the rock boys…
5. A Killer Instinct
A 7-3 record is nothing to scoff at by NFL standards but one can’t help but notice that even in victory, the Broncos have been a bit lax when it comes to putting opponents away. Take Sunday’s victory over the San Diego Chargers for instance, Wesley Woodyard took a second quarter interception all the way down to the Charger three yard line. Three plays later the Broncos were faced with a fourth and goal from the one yard line, Fox opted for a Matt Prater chipshot instead capitalizing fully on the turnover. Keep in mind that San Diego’s previous four drives all ended in punts, a touchdown there puts the Broncos up by seven points and completely demoralizes an already struggling offense. Worst case scenario, the Broncos get stuffed and the lethargic Chargers get the ball on their own one yard line. Sounds like a risk worth taking to me.
6. Home Field Advantage
There’s no place like home, especially when home is Mile High. The Broncos are 4-1 in their own backyard so far. With a playoff berth on the horizon the Broncos can now set their sights on that coveted first round bye. Why is this significant? Since 1977 the Broncos are 13-3 in home playoff games.
Up until Sunday the Broncos have been relatively healthy and what injuries there have been, have proven to have little to no impact. If anything, in Chris Harris’ and Tony Carter ‘s cases, injuries have proven to be an opportunity to make significant contribution on one of the league’s hottest defenses. If the Broncos are going to make a serious run at this thing they’ll have to stay healthy as depth is not a strong suit. Willis McGahee going down is a prime example.
8. An Elvis Sighting
With the emergence of superstar Von Miller it would be easy to deduce that Elvis Dumervil must be having a down year. Not so fast, the DE has already equaled his tackle and sack numbers from a year ago and with so much energy going in to stopping his counterpart, its not too far fetched that Elvis will log his first double digit sack season since his 2009 when he lead the NFL with 17. Oh yeah, Elvis also has 6 forced fumbles on the season, two more than Miller.
It’s official, Wesley Woodyard has arrived. The undersized linebacker is currently tied for the most interceptions amongst NFL linebackers with three. In addition to Woodyard’s three picks he also leads the Broncos with 88 tackles and three sacks. With six games to go I’d say theres a good chance WW will be one of several Bronco defenders taking in the Hawaiian surf come January (wink, wink). Let’s just hope he’s too busy to actually play in that game…
10. A healthy holiday for Tracy Porter
While Broncos fans have been pleased with the production of Chris Harris and Tony Carter we can’t help but to remember that they are only seeing the field because of Tracy Porter ‘s illness. Although Porter has been cleared to practice he still hasn’t played since October 7th at New England and has no indication as to when he will inserted back in the lineup.