After a 2-0 start, the Denver Broncos have now lost three straight. A four-game stretch beginning week six will determine how they handle the rest of the season.
Despite a promising start to the year, the Denver Broncos are now playing for their lives.
At home against the Rams, away against Arizona, away against Kansas City, and finally home against Houston. Those four games before the bye week will almost certainly decide how the Broncos play out the rest of their season.
If they can find a way to win three or four of those games, the season will be saved and Denver will be back in the playoff picture. Vance Joesph and Case Keenum will still have their jobs, the spirits in the locker room will be high, and the team will be focused on using the bye to get healthy in preparation of closing out the season with a fight for a place in the postseason.
However, big changes are likely to follow if the Broncos can’t win at least two games during this critical stretch, and that might not even be enough.
Vance Joesph will be gone, Keenum will head to the bench for Chad Kelly, and other young players like Courtland Sutton, Isaac Yiadom, Josey Jewell, and Daeshawn Hamilton will be on the field a heck of a lot more.
Will the Broncos completely tank? I doubt it. But if the current roster doesn’t prove that they will be in the mix of the playoffs before the bye week, it is a no-brainer for the Broncos to see what they have in their young players before it’s time to draft new ones in April.
If there are some games lost along the way that could have been won with Case Keenum or a heavier dose of veteran players, so be it. At that point, the higher the draft pick the better.
The NFL is a business, and the main focus is always to get to the point where you can compete for championships.
Firing a coach midseason is never ideal, but right before a bye is the best time to do it. Considering a long-term replacement for Joesph is probably not on the staff already, John Elway might have a hard time actually pulling the trigger. But if the Broncos continue to struggle under Joesph as badly as they are right now, it just has to be done.
The Denver Broncos are a talented team, and I wouldn’t be completely blown away if they went 3-1 before their bye week to resurrect the season and quiet all of their current naysayers (until the next losing streak of course).
But if they can’t get it done, changes need to be made. The Denver Broncos are a proud organization that refuses anything less than winning football, from the fanbase all the way up to the Bowlens.