By Jim Lyles
BRONCOS RUSH OFFENSE:
Willis McGhee had a fine afternoon rushing for a game high 145 yards on 28 attempts.
As a team the Broncos ran for 216 yards which was the major reason why the team was able to keep the game so close. They held onto the ball for nearly six minutes longer than the Chiefs.
The Chiefs did a solid job of not allowing Tim Tebow to run all over the place. He was held to just 16 yards on 6 carries, and he coughed up a key second quarter fumble at the Chiefs’ 15-yard line.
BRONCOS PASS OFFENSE:
The Chiefs played a tough man-to-man pass coverage. Broncos receivers were rarely open which forced Tebow to throw away a slew of passes rather than take unnecessary sacks.
Tebow struggled with his reads completing just 6-of-22 passes for 60 yards, no touchdowns, and one interception. He finished the day with a QB rating of 20.6.
BRONCOS RUN DEFENSE:
The Broncos run defense started out slowly but did a solid job in the second half. The Chiefs ran for 106 yards on 30 carries, and scored their only TD of the game on a Dexter McCluster 21-yard run.
BRONCOS PASS DEFENSE:
Like the Broncos run defense, the pass defense did a much better job in coverage in the second half.
The Chiefs offensive line contained the Broncos pass rush, with just one sack coming from defensive end Robert Ayers. Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil, normally keys to the Broncos pass rush, were non-factors.
BRONCOS SPECIAL TEAMS:
Matt Prater made his only field-goal attempt from 38 yards out in the third quarter to trim the Chiefs lead to 7-3.
The team’s punt and kickoff coverage units did a good job. The Broncos recovered Javier Arenas‘ muffed punt which led to their only points of the day.
OVERALL TEAM RATING:
The Broncos defensive coaching staff did a nice job of adjusting the defense to the Chiefs offense after the halftime intermission. The Chiefs struggled offensively the rest of game.
The offensive coaches on the other hand did not have an answer for the Chiefs pass defense, and for the third week in a row, the Broncos’ passing attack did not handle man-to-man pass coverage.
In the NFL, being a one-dimensional offense is the equivalent to playing with one arm behind your back. The Broncos literally played the Chiefs with no passing attack.
The Broncos are playoff bound, playing a veteran Pittsburgh Steelers team. The Steelers have one of the league’s top ranked run defenses. The offensive coaching staff is going to need to start immediately formulating an effective aerial attack if they expect to extend their season past the wild card.