“Losing is a disease…blah blah blah.” This is an old quote from the movie The Natural. A story of a baseball team that continues to lose games while Roy Hobbs, the main character played by Robert Redford, sits on the bench and is prevented from playing due to the coach’s decision. The coach tries to bring in some type of psychologist to speak to them about losing in order to change their mindset and that is where this quote is taken from. It’s true to some degree - losing can be treated like a disease. As your team loses and continues to lose, your mindset becomes, “I hope we don’t lose,” or worse yet, “Why are we playing? We’re just going to lose?” Either way, the Broncos don’t have a winner’s mentality and that is one of my biggest dislikes for this game. Here’s my likes and dislikes for the week:
This game is hard to like at all. It was a grudge match to the end, but more than anything, the Broncos were only kept in this game thanks to the Kansas City Chiefs. Still, there were some things to like about this game.
1. I liked Knowshon Moreno and I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t. He is finally healthy and he is starting to live up to his first round draft status. I have said this constantly the past few weeks, I believe whole heartedly that Moreno would have had 100 yard games in each of the past 3 (he did have one against the Chiefs 3 weeks ago) if the Broncos weren’t constantly having to play from behind. I know the offensive line deserves some love and I hope we all give them some love, but Moreno really worked for his yards in this game. The Broncos lived and died on Moreno’s shoulders. Unfortunately, they died on McDaniel’s instead. Anyways, 161 yards rushing is a very good sign.
2. I liked Champ Bailey completely shutting down Dwayne Bowe. Chiefs fans were constantly asking, “Where’s Bowe? Is he hurt?” The answer is, Bowe was on the field and was fine. Problem was, Champ was all over him the entire game. There was not a single Dwayne Bowe reception in this game and he was targeted. This means the Bowe running TD streak ended today against the Denver Broncos, against Champ Bailey. Give him his money!
3. I liked Robert Ayers and his return to the defense. It’s pretty obvious how much better this defense can play when he is in the lineup which leaves me with one very daunting question: “How good could this defense actually be if Elvis Dumervil was on the field?” The defense still stinks, don’t get me wrong. But when there is suddenly something that resembles a pass rush, the secondary isn’t left to hang. Speaking of secondary, props to the entire Denver defensive secondary. Perrish Cox, Syd’Quan Thompson, and Nate Jones stepped up in the absence of some very key players.
But let’s be realistic everyone, yes there were some good things, but a loss is a loss and that usually results in a hefty list of dislikes. It also results in an enormous decline of Josh McDaniels’ approval rating, however, McDaniels did not make my dislike board. Here’s why…
1. I want to, very much, dislike Josh McDaniels right now. Up to this point, he has made some seriously poor decisions, both on and off the field. But this game was a trap. The Chiefs had the Broncos’ on their radar and wanted blood. Yes, the play calling was extremely questionable in some situations, such as punting on fourth down, and thus basically quitting. But he really is doing what he can with what he’s got. He just needs to learn to consider not being so predictable. So here’s what I dislike. I dislike the fact that Tim Tebow is not starting right now. The season is lost. The Broncos can not make the playoffs, and Kyle Orton had his worst game to date. I know QB’s are allowed one bad game here and there, but Kyle Orton really lost this game single handedly. He threw the ball into traffic way too often and never gave his receivers a chance to go get the ball on his deep balls. He made bad decisions and even worse throws. I still stand by the fact that Kyle Orton is a good QB, but it is time for Tim Tebow. This is about the time Jay Cutler came onto the field, and if you remember, the Broncos still had a chance at the playoffs when Cutler replaced Jake Plummer. In this case, the Broncos are done. Tim Tebow time is now!
2. I disliked the refs in this game. Some of the calls could not be avoided, but the NFL has really given way too much power to the refs. At this point, the refs have the ability to completely change the outcome of a game (for instance, the game against the 49′ers.) I wish the NFL would create some way for the teams to defend themselves from the refs. Penalties need to be challenge-able! I almost feel like the refs have become the government officials watching over the commoner football players, making up ridiculous rules such as health care and the ‘Brady rule.’ The coach’s only power is to yell freely at the refs and cause the refs to hold a grudge against the coaches. Where’s the coach/ref protection program? You heard it here first, penalties need to be challenge-able! Or better yet, the Broncos need to spend their 2011 first round draft pick on a referee.
3. I dislike all the hate for Josh McDaniels. Yes the team is playing horrible. Yes they keep on losing, and yes usually you blame it all on the coach. But the man hears it, sees it, and feels it daily. How hard it must be for him to be motivated to put all the time he does put into this team just to be hated for it. I can’t imagine the amount of tension the organization is feeling within Dove Valley. But the fans’ displeasure and outcry is resulting in a very negative atmosphere. The team almost has to apologize every week for even playing. For an athlete, that’s like apologizing for existing. I’m personally unhappy with all that is going on with this Broncos organization. I have lost faith for this team. But there is a bright side and that is next season. Mike Shanahan said the team only needed one more linebacker and something else for his defense just before he got fired. I find it weird how the team is in that same exact boat at this very moment. I feel like next season things will be different. But in the mean time…
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