Week six in the NFL finds the Denver Broncos hitting the road for the fourth ti..."/> Week six in the NFL finds the Denver Broncos hitting the road for the fourth ti..."/> Week six in the NFL finds the Denver Broncos hitting the road for the fourth ti..."/>

Broncos 2015: AFC West Preview – Week Six


Oct 11, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Denver Broncos safety T.J. Ward (43) celebrates in the fourth quarter against the Oakland Raiders at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Week six in the NFL finds the Denver Broncos hitting the road for the fourth time this season.  This road trip sends the Broncos to Cleveland, Ohio to face the 2-3 Cleveland Browns.  For my brief thoughts on this game, as well as the other week six games featuring teams from the AFC West, please continue reading.

Denver Broncos at Cleveland Browns: Once again, while the Broncos offense struggled against the Oakland Raiders in week five, the defense made a game-changing play when Chris Harris Jr. intercepted a fourth quarter Derek Carr pass and returned it 74-yards for a touchdown that basically secured the Broncos fifth win of the season.

Whatever the reason –  Peyton Manning’s woes and/or age, the young offensive line, the dropped passes, the sub-par running game – the Broncos have to improve in all aspects of their offensive attack.  Considering the Browns are ranked 30th in the league in total defense (allowing 400.4 yards/game), the Broncos better have an offensive explosion if this team has a legitimate shot at another Super Bowl title.  The Browns defense is ranked 31st in rushing defense (149.4 yards/game) and their passing defense is giving up an average of 251.0 yards passing/game, which ranks them 18th in the league.  Based on those stats, I would expect to see a heavy dose of C.J. Anderson and Ronnie Hillman Sunday afternoon.  Who knows though, the Browns may be thinking that the woeful Broncos offense is exactly what their struggling defense needs.  Thankfully, Peyton Manning is on our side.

Even though Manning doesn’t look like he has the last few years, he has still performed when it was necessary.  Fans forget that he is 1/11th of a total unit – a chain is only as strong as its weakest link!

On the other side of the ball, the defense will be out with DeMarcus Ware due to back spasms he incurred in Oakland.  In Ware’s 11-year career, this is only the fourth game he has missed.

Kansas City Chiefs at Minnesota Vikings: I live in the Midwest so Chiefs talk in this part of the country has basically come to a complete halt because of the Chiefs poor start and the majority of the regional fans have switched their attention to the Kansas City Royals and the Major League Baseball playoffs.  Hey, I am OK with that – the less stuff I hear about the Kansas City Chiefs, the better!  Being a die-hard Bronco fan I am, I occasionally remind Chief fans that “their football team” is 1-4 and at the bottom of the AFC West.

The Chiefs travel to Minnesota in week six to face the 2-2 Minnesota Vikings.  I am probably letting my heart determine my thoughts for this game, but I hope the Chiefs fly home Sunday with a 1-5 record in more despair than it already appears they’re in.  I was rather impressed with Vikings quarterback, Teddy Bridgewater, when the Vikings faced the Broncos in week four.  Considering Bridgewater was heavily pressured most of the day by the Broncos, he did make some plays that kept the Vikings in the game right up to the end.  At this point in the season, the Broncos defense is head-and-shoulders above the Chiefs, so I am expecting a good game from the Vikings quarterback.

The Chiefs are without the services of Jamaal Charles for the remainder of the year due to a knee injury.  Knile Davis is listed first on the depth chart, followed by Charcandrick West.

San Diego Chargers at Green Bay Packers: Following Monday Night Football and the last second loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Charges travel to Green Bay to face the undefeated Green Bay Packers.  The Charges kept Michael Vick in check most of the game (except last drive of the game); the task will be equally as difficult, if not harder, this week when  Aaron Rodgers is the opposing quarterback.  Rodgers certainly appears to be in midseason form through five weeks with thirteen touchdown passes and only two interceptions.  His counterpart this Sunday, Philip Rivers, has ten touchdowns and five interceptions.  Surprisingly, Rivers is averaging just over 75-yards passing more than Rodgers.  While an interesting statistic, it really doesn’t mean anything – I would rather have a team with more wins than a quarterback with more passing yards, which is the situation in Denver!

I could be way off base, but I fully expect the Packers to improve to 6-0, while the Chargers fall to 2-4.  Assuming that happens, and the Chiefs find a way to get their second win of the year in Minnesota, the Chargers and Chiefs will be tied.

Go Broncos – beat the Browns!