Sep 21, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) and Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) greet in the middle of the field after the game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos at CenturyLink Field. Seattle defeated Denver 26-20. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
When a team does all they can to fight hard and come so close to stealing a victory, taking the loss can be heartbreaking. But I believe the Broncos should not hang their heads.
Marshawn Lynch dealt the final blow that ripped out the hearts of all the Broncos’ faithful after such a thrilling comeback in one of the most difficult places in the league to win a football game. However, the fact that the Broncos did not give up the fight shows that they are in fact one of the most well rounded teams in the league. They are clearly the class of the AFC. The slow start was really difficult to watch for all fans involved, but they were treated to a show in the fourth quarter as they kept the fight going.
The defense was the golden spot in this game due to the fact that they were the unit that kept up the fight despite the disadvantage on the scoreboard. It appeared though that the defense continued to fight for the most part, except on the scoring drives. It took a spirited fourth quarter from the defense to awaken the team, especially the offense, from it’s slumber. Facing a 17-3 deficit, the Broncos defense figured that they did not want to lose the game. And since the offense could not get anything going, they had to step up to keep them in the game. It all started as the Seahawks were pinned deep in their territory and Demarcus Ware coming away with a sack (and what should have been a fumble recovery) that led to a safety by tackling Lynch in the end zone. The defense smelled the play out and took advantage. Now the offense had a chance to get something going as it appeared the fight was back on.
Sep 21, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Denver Broncos tight end Jacob Tamme (84) catches a touchdown against Seattle Seahawks cornerback Byron Maxwell (41) during the fourth quarter at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
However, Peyton Manning and Company still could not get anything going despite the defensive work and were forced to punt. The call was made to the defense to make sure that they could get another stop, to keep the fight reasonable to come back. The answer was called almost right away as Aqib Talib tipped a Russell Wilson passed that was intercepted by Chris Harris, who could gave the offense great field position with his return. This time, the offense was able to awaken and score the team’s first touchdown of the game. With the touchdown, the offense joined the defense in a fight to attempt the upset.
The defense still played like they were possessed and continued to stop Russell Wilson and the Seahawks offense. It all appeared that the Broncos would have a chance to come out on top. Kam Chancellor appeared to have the last laugh by reading Manning like an open book and picked the ball out of the air, which appeared to have ended any fight the Broncos had left. But the defense stood ground and only allowed three points, giving the Broncos a glimmer of hope. The hope was answered when Manning went 80 yards in just 41 seconds to tie the game on a touchdown and two-point conversion. However, Lynch had the last laugh as the Seahawks offense made sure the Broncos offense never saw the field and won the game.
Sep 21, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Denver Broncos tight end Virgil Green (85) is pushed out of bounds by Seattle Seahawks strong safety Kam Chancellor (31) during the first quarter at CenturyLink Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports
The fight that the Broncos put up in the game showed that they do have what it takes to compete with the best teams in the league. Had the Broncos started the game with more fire than they did in the fourth quarter, this could have been a completely different game. Despite the loss, the Broncos made a moral statement that should put other teams on notice. That notice is that they will do whatever it takes to win the fight and win the game in any situation. The defense has the chance to keep this team in the game or hold on long enough to seal away a win. Had this game been a Broncos victory, Manning would have to thank his defense for bailing the offense out. Since when have we heard the Broncos defense be depended upon to keep things interesting since Manning took over? Not very often.
The Broncos enter their early bye with a 2-1 record, which most expected them to be at this point in the season. 3-0 would be a real treat for fans, but this game shows that the Broncos do in fact have the abilities and the players necessary to once again make some noise this season. So, the loss will sting for fans for a bit, but there is reason for optimism in the Mile High City. This team is built to get even better and as a fan, I could not be any more proud of their fight in a heartbreaking loss.