Nov 16, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) calls a play against the St. Louis Rams during the second half at the Edward Jones Dome. The Rams won 22-7. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Jake Plummer is the cool head Broncos Country needs.
The people who express doom-and-gloom over the Broncos recent losses and how John Fox needs to show more passion must take a deep breath. As the former Denver Broncos quarterback said, Fox and the team will figure it out.
What would help in that regard is an offense that isn’t predictable. Plummer mentioned that too.
When everyone in the stadium knows what the Broncos offense will do, that’s a problem.
Here’s the Denver offense:
First down: Run for at most two yards.
Second down: Three-yard dump pass.
Third down: Another dink pass short of the first-down marker.
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Every now and then, offensive coordinator Adam Gase calls one or two deep routes for Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders. They attempt a couple wide receiver screens a game. Aside from that, the last few weeks that’s been the Broncos offense.
No imagination or creativity. No Mach-1. No up-tempo. No vertical threat. No using your weapons or the quarterback to their strengths.
What happened to that balance Fox, Gase and Peyton Manning spoke all offseason about? Take the 22-7 loss to the St. Louis Rams. The Broncos had 10 rushing attempts. Yes, 10. This is in a game that Denver was no more than two possessions down until late in the fourth quarter. That makes the offense predictable.
No doubt the Denver offensive line is putrid. It is the weakness of this football team right now. The surprise is this unit can no longer pass protect. It’s no surprise it can’t run block given it’s pretty much the same unit that couldn’t do it a season ago. But what that unit could do is pass block. Now the Broncos offensive line can’t even do that.
Nov 16, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; St. Louis Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald (99) sacks Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) during the second half at the Edward Jones Dome. The Rams won 22-7. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports
If you’re going to abandon the run game as Gase did against the Rams, your offense better have some creativity and originality to it or, stop me if you’ve heard this before, the offense has become predictable. The dink-and-dunk garbage can’t and doesn’t work.
The hope is Gase and Manning find that creativity and originality this week, because the defensive test isn’t any easier with the Miami Dolphins.
That means when it’s first down, don’t call a run play. Everyone in the stadium knows it’s coming.
But it’s not just the offensive game plan that has become predictable. When was the last time Jack Del Rio called a blitz? How many times is Von Miller going to drop into coverage?
It’s often said coaches overthink their game plans. That’s definitely been the case since the New England Patriots debacle, and the Broncos coaches have yet to recover. Get back to what your players do well. Stop overthinking it.
There’s no need to panic.
Broncos Country needs to take Plummer’s advice and take a deep breath.
The Broncos coaches need to do the same and stop being so predictable.
Oct 5, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio during the game against the Arizona Cardinals at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports