The 2022 Denver Broncos were one of the more disastrous teams in recent NFL history. From an absurd amount of pre-snap penalties to decimating injuries, all the way to one of the worst seasons by a head coach in professional football history. All-in-all, the Broncos' 2022 campaign was a wreck. With a new coaching staff led by Sean Payton, a revamped roster, and newfound optimism, there is reason to hope for a turnaround in Denver.
However, if the Broncos are going to win in 2023, and make the playoffs for the first time since they won it all in 2015, it is crucial that the team improves on several areas of play this year. Here are three areas of play that Sean Payton and the Broncos must improve upon in 2023 to avoid a 2022 redux.
3 non-negotiable improvements the Denver Broncos must make in 2023
Plain and simple, the 2022 Broncos were one of the worst teams in football when it came to penalties. The Broncos ranked 2nd in the league in penalties with 113 penalties accepted. Their mark was second to just the Cardinals, who had 118. The team was tied for second with 23 false starts, 4th in delays of game, 7th in holdings, and led the league with 970 accepted penalty yards. That is horribly bad.
If there is one place where the Broncos need to improve the most this upcoming season, it is in the penalty department. The Broncos addressed the offensive line in free agency, which was one of the leading culprits of their demise last year. A new group led by Mike McGlinchey and Ben Powers will almost certainly see better results but will need to do a complete 180 from last year.
The defensive unit did not struggle with penalties nearly as much as the offensive unit but still managed to be near the top of the league in two disappointing categories: roughing the passer and unnecessary roughness. This shows that the Broncos struggled with simple penalties and self-inflicted wounds, something they definitely need to improve on.