3 Defining plays from the Denver Broncos Week 3 win

Denver Broncos, Russell Wilson (Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images)
Denver Broncos, Russell Wilson (Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images) /

The Denver Broncos gutted out a close win on Sunday against a top-ranked opponent. A type of win that may not have happened in years prior as the team has had issues closing out big close games. Let’s go over some of the pivotal plays. 

Biggest plays from Denver Broncos matchup vs. 49ers: Penny Front

Now, this isn’t one single play necessarily, but a big reason as to why the Denver Broncos were able to limit the San Francisco 49ers‘ vaunted rushing attack. Defensive Coordinator Ejiro Evero utilized a 5 man front that is used by just about every coach of the Vic Fangio tree, and it is this same front that laid out the blueprint to stopping the Los Angeles Rams from winning Super Bowl LIII. The penny front is a 3-down lineman front with two outside linebackers on the edge and one sole linebacker at the second level. The purpose of it is to eliminate any double teams that the outside zone concept looks to create.

By having five men across the line of scrimmage in one on one situations it stresses the offensive line and forces blocks to be near perfect for a big gain on any lateral flowing run. Now with only having one linebacker if the run gets to the second level, there is little resistance.

(Watch All-22 clip HERE)

Courtland Sutton Downfield Grab

The offensive performance to this point in the game was nothing more than abysmal. Although he had just endured the most three and outs of his career, Russell Wilson still had one more shot at it thanks to the defense.

On the play, the original call was a run play. However once Wilson saw the defense was in a one high safety man coverage look, he checked out of it because he was confident in his guy to make a play. It has happened a number of times this season already. Wilson is known to take boundary deep shots when he has a trusted receiver with a true one-on-one look. They tried to hit a play on the same look early on in the game, but Sutton wasn’t on the same page. This time around though, Sutton was ready.

(Watch All-22 clip HERE)

Jonas Griffith Interception

The first interception of the season couldn’t have come at a better time. Jimmy Garoppolo’s production in his time as a 49er has primarily come from throws to the middle of the field where the receiver can catch the ball and get yards after the catch.

Defensive Coordinators picked up on this fast and started to use Cover 1 man variations with a safety coming down to poach any crossing routes to combat that. Ejiro Evero was no different. On multiple plays, he threw many different variations at Garoppolo, even a near pick-6 on the first drive that was batted down by DJ Jones.

(Watch All-22 clip HERE)

On this play, the defense started out in a two-high safety look pre-snap, after the snap the weak side safety, Kareem Jackson, came down and made a play on the ball that ended up in an interception. This specific call was Cover 1 Lurk.