We’re going to play a game of remember when as it relates to the Denver Broncos, their 4-0 start and their seemingly unstoppable offense. Some of the things that were worrisome back in the offseason and through training camp seem silly now, so let’s have some fun.
Remember when the experts and fans alike said the six game suspension of linebacker Von Miller would be a devastating blow? There were even some who thought the Broncos could go 3-3 or even 2-4 in those six games.
Assuming they beat the Dallas Cowboys and they are a touchdown favorite, the Broncos will go 6-0 without Miller.
Remember when the free agent loss of Elvis Dumervil would hurt the Broncos? There’s no doubt that Dumervil is an elite pass rusher and maybe the Broncos miss that, but Robert Ayers is a better all-around player and has improved his pass rushing ability.
Remember when Charles Woodson turned down the Broncos for the Oakland Raiders and the people who freaked out over the safety position? Rahim Moore and Duke Ihenacho have both been terrific and there’s a 50-50 chance Woodson wouldn’t have even made the team.
Remember when the Broncos offense was limited because as good as Peyton Manning is, he could no longer throw deep? Manning hit Eric Decker with a 52-yard rope on Sunday versus the Philadelphia Eagles that spilt a double team.
Remember when it would take some time for Manning and Wes Welker to mesh and there would be growing pains. Welker has six touchdown receptions through the first four games and is completely in sync with Manning.
Remember when the preseason foot injury to Champ Bailey was considered a major blow to an all ready suspect secondary? Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie has found his Pro Bowl form, Chris Harris has completely shut down the opposing slot receivers, rookie Kavon Webster has played like a veteran and Tony Carter has been solid.
Remember when the world or at least the season was over when left tackle Ryan Clady was lost for the season? In the two games since then, the Broncos have only allowed two sacks and Chris Clark has been better than just good in those games.
Remember when the Broncos couldn’t run the ball and that would come back to bite them at some point? In the past two games the Broncos have rushed for 164 yards versus the Raiders and 141 yards versus the Eagles.
Remember when the lack of a pass rush without Miller and Dumervil would expose the defense? There’s no doubt that the Broncos miss Miller but they’ve gotten key sacks at key times from Ayers and Shaun Phillips.
Remember when one of the biggest worries in training camp was about the middle linebacker position? The Broncos moved Wesley Woodyard to that spot and he’s playing as well as anyone in the league, and is the unquestioned leader of the defense.
Remember when many question John Elway’s draft classes? In his three draft classes these are the players who are either starting or making major contributions. 2011 draft: Miller, even with the suspension; he’s a great player, Orlando Franklin, Rahim Moore, Nate Irving and college free agent Chris Harris. 2012 draft: Derek Wolfe, Ronnie Hillman, Danny Trevathan, Malik Jackson and college free agents Steven Johnson and Duke Ihenacho. 2013 draft: Sylvester Williams was a part of the defensive tackle rotation through three weeks; Montee Ball is off to a slow start but has all the tools, Kavon Webster and college free agent CJ Anderson. That’s 15 players in three drafts who are contributing; that’s an astounding number.
Remember when the one friend of yours on Facebook, at work or somewhere else said the Broncos would be lucky to go 8-8 based on their performance in preseason? Have you heard from them lately?
Remember when the Broncos lost 40-10 to the Seattle Seahawks in the preseason and everyone panicked? It’s preseason for a reason folks.
Remember when the Broncos were upset in the playoffs last year by the Baltimore Ravens? Ok we all remember that but there’s nothing anyone can do about that until the playoffs start in January. Until then; sit back and enjoy the show!
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