Anything can happen in the playoffs. I have been taught that time and time again. And this one is no different. But I will say that I am a bit more confident in this game. Could this be Manning’s final shot to win his second ring? Can the Broncos bunk off the one-and-done tag? How will Kubiak do in his third season playoff appearance?
All of those questions will be answered on Sunday afternoon at Mile High.
I believe this will all come down to the matchups on paper. Who performs better in those matchups? The Steelers offense vs. the Broncos defense.
I will be very interested to see who suits up for the Steelers for this game. They might have had a second half surge, but even Roethlisberger said that they were lucky that they came away with a win in Week 15’s game.
Kubiak is well prepared and will make any necessary moves if needed. He proved that against the Chargers and I believe he will do what is best for the team if the going gets tough. He will adjust accordingly.
Another key here is going to be the turnover battle. If the Broncos defense can force the Steelers to cough up the ball or make bad decisions, then it is a no brainer. Easier said than done however.
For my bold predictions, I will say that Emmanuel Sanders will have another big game against his former team. It may not match the same numbers as the Week 15 showdown, but it will be pretty close. (10 receptions, 135 yards, two touchdowns)
The Broncos defense will force at least three turnovers. And I think a defensive touchdown will be scored.
With the home crowd behind them and perhaps the biggest opportunity in front of them, the Broncos gut it out and advance to the AFC Championship Game.
Broncos 31 Steelers 21