Out of four wild card teams, the Broncos’ potential opponent won’t be anyone they haven’t already seen this season.
With the third-seeded Bengals playing host to the sixth seeded San Diego Chargers, the Broncos will either play Kansas City, Indianapolis, or the Bolts.
Denver has already obviously played both San Diego and Kansas City twice, while the Colts handed them their first loss of the season back in week seven.
San Diego and Indianapolis are two of the three teams that have beaten the Broncos this season, and both found ways to get the ball out of Peyton Manning’s hands when it mattered most.
In fact, both games ended somewhat similar. The Broncos, despite playing inarguably their two worst games of the season in those two contests, had a chance to come back and tie or win at the end of the game before Peyton Manning was hit and threw a late interception.
I’m not exactly sure who I would want to play but for me it doesn’t really matter. The biggest thing to note here is that the Broncos will have already been familiar with their first playoff opponent, even having a 2/3 chance of playing a team they play twice a year.
That familiarity is obviously good for the Broncos, and I thought it was worth pointing out again.
The Broncos played their worst game of the season against San Diego in week 15 on Thursday Night Football after opening with a flawless touchdown drive. San Diego completely controlled the clock, holding the ball for nearly 40 minutes of the game thanks to some big third down conversions, some big defensive stops, and some huge penalties from the Broncos.
Against the Colts, the Broncos simply turned the ball over too many times. Fumbles, muffed punts, interceptions. There is no way they should have even been in position to win that game or get into it but they were, somehow.
The Chiefs nearly beat the Chargers in the final week of the season with their backup squad, which leads me to believe that San Diego plays up to the level of its competition because I don’t think Kansas City’s backups are actually that good, but they won’t admit that.
The best QB among those three teams is probably Andrew Luck, but Philip Rivers has seen a lot more than Luck and is more tested in the playoffs. I also think the Chargers are a hotter team than the Colts.
It will be very interesting to see which team the Broncos draw after this weekend of football, and hopefully they are prepared to defend their home field.