To continue on with our analysis of the Broncos’ 16 game regular season schedule, let’s move on to week 2.
This is the Broncos second consecutive home game, and it’s imperative the team starts the season 2-0 because the next three games are against the Titans, the Packers, and the Chargers. Not to mention, the Broncos play four of five games on the road beginning in November.
In week 2, the Cincinnati Bengals come to town. The last matchup between these two teams in 2009 saw an “Immaculate Reception” by Brandon Stokley, which jumpstarted the Broncos 6-0 start.
If anything the Bengals are a good model for the Broncos. They went 4-11-1 in 2008, but attained a 10-6 record in 2009. That’s where the mimicking must end.
Last year saw a tremendous decline for the striped team as they regressed back to 4-12.
2011 is a rebuilding year for the Broncos and the Bengals. The quarterback position is a question mark for these teams at this point, and both teams have new offensive play callers.
The Bengals finished ranked 22nd on offense. Their passing attack was stronger than their rushing attacks with Carson Palmer and T.O. leading the team in passing yards and receiving yards. Ochocinco took a little more of a backseat to T.O. on the field, but despite the strong personalities, the two didn’t clash, publicly.
On defense, the Bengals finished ranked 24th in the league. Their rush defense was ranked 19th and their pass defense was ranked 13th. Dhani Jones led the team in tackles with 125, and Carlos Dunlap finished 2010 with 10 sacks under his belt. Leon Hall led the team in interceptions with 4.
The Broncos and Bengals could very well be meeting with 1-0 records as the Broncos could handle the Raiders at home in week 1, and the Bengals could get the win over the Browns in their week 1 opener.
A 2-0 start for the Broncos would get fans behind John Fox’s methods and whoever the quarterback is.
From here on out, the Broncos enter a daunting gauntlet of the Super Bowl Champion in the Packers, the 2010 AFC West winner in the Chargers, and a deadly Titans team that can tear a run defense into shreds.
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