5-0 feels so good, but the Denver Broncos have a long ways to go still. The team showed that they can win in a shootout. Peyton Manning threw for 414 yards and four touchdowns and added a rushing touchdown while leading the Broncos to a 51-48 victory. Julius Thomas came up big by catching nine balls for 122 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Broncos gave up 48 points but were still able to win. Here is what I liked, what I didn’t like, and what’s next for the Broncos.
What I liked
Coming from Behind
The Broncos dug themselves into a pretty big hole to start the game, going down 14-0 to the Cowboys, but I liked how they didn’t panic and came back to win. Being down by that much is something the Broncos have not been used to this year. The drive for the first touchdown was huge to get momentum and confidence back on the Broncos side. The Broncos scored in three plays and took away a lot of the Cowboys momentum. If the Broncos would not have scored on that drive I think it would have been extremely hard for the Broncos to come back, but they capitalized and showed that they were not going to just lay down.
What I didn’t like
The Defense Playing Poorly
Giving up 48 points was way too much for this talented unit. I understand that the Broncos were without Von Miller and Champ Bailey and lost Wesley Woodyard and Chris Harris during the game, but even when Woodyard and Harris were in, the Broncos were having trouble stopping the Cowboys. Woodyard was a huge loss because he is both the middle linebacker and captain of the defense. Without Woodyard, the Broncos defense just looked unorganized. The benefit is that other players were able to gain experience and get more reps than they normally would. Danny Trevathan’s fantastic interception looked good as well, but the Broncos defense is going to have to be much better if they want to succeed the rest of the season and in the playoffs.
Jaguars at Broncos
The Broncos host the winless Jaguars Sunday afternoon and are heavily favored. The Jaguars main stars are running back Maurice Jones-Drew and wide receiver Justin Blackmon. The Broncos have been shutting down the run pretty well so hopefully they can contain MJD, but Blackmon is a big physical receiver, similar to Dez Bryant last week. Blackmon is coming off of a big week last week against the Rams. The biggest thing the Broncos need to do is not look past the Jaguars. They need to stay focused and not get caught up in the records. The Jaguars have nothing to lose and will do whatever it takes to get a win so the Broncos must be smart and not take this challenge lightly.
The Broncos host the Jaguars Sunday afternoon at 2:05 p.m. MST.