Broncos Power Rankings: Week 16 Edition


Dec 20, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Brock Osweiler (17) looks on after turning the ball over on downs against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the second half at Heinz Field. The Steelers won the game 34-27. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos for the second straight game could not respond in the second half and lost to the Steelers. Where are they in this week’s power rankings?

Well, the Denver Broncos had a playoff birth all but wrapped up in Pittsburgh. But they could not figure out how to wrap up the gift and instead gave the Patriots a first round bye.

So, the Broncos are still without a playoff birth. And with Peyton Manning coming back from his foot injury, it will be interesting to see who plays at quarterback. But we all know that it is more than the quarterback position.

The team and the coaches need to figure out what they are doing in the second half. Perhaps my former colleague Ian St. Clair can identify what exactly is going on in the locker room at the halfway point of the game.

Either way, the Broncos need to figure out something fast. Or they can kiss January football goodbye all together.

As we do here every week, we go through the Power Rankings from the big sites and I give my takes on them. Here we go

Bleacher Report- Broncos Drop to No. 9

Bleacher Report’s Sean Tomlinson has placed the Broncos down from the Top 5 to the Top 10 as they sunk down to No. 9 in this week’s power rankings.

After blowing a 17 point second quarter lead, it does not surprise me that they have dropped to that spot. The biggest thing that I took away from Tomlinson’s analysis is this tidbit right here…

…The greater concern is the plateaued play of quarterback Brock Osweiler who lead an offense that punted on six straight drives to start the second half.”

Reading that caused me to do a double take. And to put that in consideration, Osweiler only completed seven passes in the last 30 minutes of the game after going near perfect in the first half. That concerns me quite a bit.

Perhaps Osweiler needs to know that football is a 60 minute sport, not 30. Broncos Drop to No. 9 here as well

Elliot Harrison has the Broncos at number nine as well in his rankings. He also points out something interesting. And it is a unit on defense that has been excelling up until Week 15.

The Broncos let the Steelers’ wide receivers run around like kids at a public swimming pool.”

I was quite surprised to see the Broncos secondary allow so many passing yards. This unit was solid for a good 14 weeks, but Antonio Brown and the Steelers wide outs were able to pick them apart in the second half. And Chris Harris Jr. allowed his first touchdown in two years. The secondary clearly missed Darian Stewart and T.J. Ward in this game.

Things are not going to be easy for this unit going forward with David Bruton Jr. out for the year with a broken leg.

Stewart, Ward. We need you guys right now.

Dec 20, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Denver Broncos head coach Gary Kubiak talks with referee Carl Cheffers (51) during a stoppage in play against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the second half at Heinz Field. The Steelers won the game, 34-27. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

ESPN- Broncos drop three spots to No. 8

Even though it is still a significant drop, ESPN decided to not go with the number nine and rank the Broncos as the eighth best team in the NFL.

The biggest thing that ESPN pointed out was the fact that the Broncos have outscored their opponents by 40 points in the past three games. The negative, they have been outscored 36-0 in those games.

The Broncos, as a unit, have to play a complete 60 minute game. Monday’s game against the Bengals will be a true test for the Broncos.

The MMQB- Broncos Drop to No. 8

Peter King did not have a whole lot to say about the Broncos this week. However, there is not a whole lot to say after the first three analysis pretty much nailed it in the coffin.

Three straight games without a second half point is indeed no way to stay in contention. In his Cincinnati analysis, he points out that it most likely will be McCarron vs Osweiler. You can flip a coin for that battle.

Next: Broncos Goals Still Within Reach

I think next week will come down to the defense. And I will give the edge to the Broncos, especially if they get healthy in key places.

What do you all think about the latest power rankings? Leave your comments below.