Was the Denver Broncos’ defense really that bad in their 35-19 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars? Probably not as bad as you think.
The Jags went 5-for-14 on third down and 0-for-3 on fourth down. They rushed for just 71 yards on the ground. They didn’t allow Chad Henne to throw a touchdown and they pushed him into two interceptions.
How much did Champ Bailey impact the defense? Well, his presence was certainly felt as he drew a very difficult matchup in Justin Blackmon. It was a fun duel to watch. Bailey had six tackles and three passes defensed in his first game of the season. However, Blackmon caught 14 balls for 190 yards. Bailey needed more safety help.
“It was a tough challenge,” Bailey said following the game. “I’ll tell you that. It definitely wasn’t a cakewalk.”
Bailey returned after missing nearly two months of camp and the regular season with a reported Lisfranc sprain.
“You’re never going to get over these things completely, but it’s something I can deal with and it didn’t affect my performance so that’s why I feel good about it.”
Other defensive notes include defensive end Malik Jackson’s impressive series in the third quarter where he single-handedly forced the Jags to go three-and-out.
First he sacked Henne for a 7-yard loss, then a tackled Maurice Jones-Drew for a one-yard loss, and finally he sacked Henne again for a loss of 5 yards.
“This is my first time really going out there and performing like that,” Jackson said. “The greats keep it up and I’m just trying to keep it up and keep working to get many performances like that.”
Jackson got his first career sack last week against Dallas so as for keeping it up, he’s doing a fine job.
With this game now in the books, Von Miller’s suspension is officially lifted. He will report to Dove Valley Monday morning and get going again.
“When you have a dynamic player returning to your lineup, he definitely going to cause some problems for people,, but we can’t rely on him to do everything,” Bailey said. “It’s an 11-man game so we’ve got to make sure we do our part.”