Denver Broncos: Study the Past If You Would Define The Future

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Oct 13, 2016; San Diego, CA, USA; Denver Broncos fullback Andy Janovich (32) blocks San Diego Chargers free safety Dwight Lowery (20) for running back C.J. Anderson (22) during the first quarter at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports /

The Run Game:  Plays with Success

When running the ball there were some consistencies that showed up with how teams attacked this defense.  Most of the time teams did not attack the edges. Khalil Mack on one side obviously makes it very difficult to run his way just like teams don’t usually challenge Von Miller’s side in the run game.

When teams did attack the edge many of times it was to Bruce Irvin’s side of the field. He has improved quite a bit in his run defense which is why teams don’t run outside often but if there is a hole to the outside that is where the Broncos will probably look to attack. So that means most of the success has happened in between the tackles.

This is where having Andy Janovich is such a huge deal. He allows us to keep the defense guessing which side we are going to run. Throw in he allows us to get a great blocker to that 2nd level opening up some holes.

One of the biggest reasons I do think this run game will be good this week is that teams that run the ZBS have given the Raiders the most trouble. With so many new players on the team they can get caught over pursuing on a play leaving the backside cut lane open for our RB’s. Overall this is a great opportunity for our run game to click. In all honesty we need it to click for us to win this game.  When our run game gets going it opens up so much of the playbook that even good defenses will have trouble defending against it.

More from Predominantly Orange

A play that I am hoping to see happen this week is that of a reverse or WR sweep. Again this is about trying to get some misdirection leading to some players abandoning their responsibility.  If nothing else this type of play can set up future plays in the game where they have to worry about us trying it again. I know that Kubiak’s system has not always been known as one of the more complicated but if there is a week for him to mix in some new wrinkles this is the week.

One final note on the run game is that while I did say running to the outside has had limited success, I do hope we still see the Broncos test the edges.  I still think the ZBS is at its best when we can get teams having to run to the sidelines leaving great opportunities for some big cut back lanes. The middle is still our best option but mixing in a few of the zone toss plays is well worth trying.