How about that. Our Denver Broncos take care of the defending Champion Baltimore Ravens decisively with a 49-27 stomping in front of the third largest crowd to watch a game in the Mile High city. However, that doesn’t mean it’s time to make your reservations for a trip to New York, unless you are taking in next week’s contest against the Giants. No, it is way early to crown the Broncos Super Bowl champs. The season just started folks. Get excited yes. Celebrate yes, but there are 15 more games to play.
I call to Witness the first half of of yesterday’s game. While many were complaining about John Fox trying to run the ball for 3 yards and the Offense going 6 and out on their first two series, both teams were trying to figure out what they could and could not actually do. This is what happens during the first game of the season.
There is a reason why the Broncos will continue to run the ball no matter what the results are. If they don’t, Peyton Manning’s brilliant work on play action will be useless. The play action gives him another microsecond to work with when making his reads. It forces the Defensive Linemen to pause and react for the run. This is a major tool in Manning’s bag of tricks.
Plenty of mistakes were buried in this victory. Dropped passes, missed Tackles, a few missed blocks, a muffed punt and a boneheaded selfish play by another that would have cost the Broncos a victory 9 out of 10 times.
The Offensive Game Ball goes to Peyton Manning. This is the guy that made the victory and Bronco Country’s vision of Peyback a reality. Manning went 27/42 for 462 yards and 7 Touchdowns and No Interceptions. That’s a 64.3% Completion Rate, a Quarterback Rating of 83.6 and a 141.1 Passer Rating. those 7 TD’s are a new Broncos team record and also tied an NFL record. I don’t think anyone can argue that PFM deserves the Game Ball on Offense.
Across the Offensive Line, Orlando Franklin graded out the highest while Louis Vasquez was the best pass blocker. Manny Ramirez graded out well in preventing Haloti Ngata from getting to Manning, but had trouble moving him around on running plays. I don’t there are many Centers out there who can. Zane Beadles was the best run blocker, but allowed a Sack, a hit on Peyton and two hurries. Pro Bowl Tackle Ryan Clady didn’t do as well as he usually does, allowing 4 hurries and a Sack. I wonder if he has completely recovered from his shoulder injury. Even so, a Ryan Clady at 80% is better than a Chris Clark at 100%.
Peyton’s weapons were as advertised. The three-headed monster turned out to be a pair of Thomases and Wes Welker though, instead of Decker, who had at least 3 dropped balls, including one for a sure Touchdown. I’ve heard since that he hurt his shoulder and that may explain the drops from a normally sure-handed Receiver.
Meanwhile, Julius Thomas had a pretty good first start. 5 catches, 110 yards and 2 Touchdowns on 7 Targets. I have a wait and see attitude before dubbing him the next Antonio Gates. The talent is there, but I need to see the consistency. That said, I’m glad he is emerging.
Demaryius Thomas however, will emerge into the Top-3 echelon of elite Wide Receivers this season. Detriot can have their Megatron, Denver has Optimus Prime. His 5 catch-161 yard-2 Touchdown evening was something to behold. That’s 32.2 yards per catch! Wes Welker caught 9 passes for 67 yards and two scores on 11 Targets. I don’t think his rapport with Manning can get a whole lot better.
We’ll get to the Defense in the next segment. Until then…
– Kaptain Kirk