1) Kareem Jackson Unnecessary Roughness In Week Two
Week two was horrible for the Broncos. Very rarely is there one play this early in the season that can feel like a season-changing moment, but this one counts. Kareem Jackson laid out Logan Thomas in the endzone on a play that resulted in a Washington touchdown, was flagged for unnecessary roughness, was ejected, and the Broncos then had to play down Jackson and Caden Sterns, who was hurt the week before.
As the game progressed, Delarrin Turner-Yell, who filled in for Jackson, was ruled out with cramps, and the Broncos safety group was left barren and depleted, and the secondary was picked apart by Sam Howell, who was on his way to leading one of the largest comebacks in Commanders history, while the Broncos blew one of their largest leads in franchise history at home, somewhere with a historic home-field advantage.
Jackson's hit on Thomas felt like a massive momentum change. A longtime staple in Washington who was also a leader in the clubhouse took a blow, Jackson was ejected, and all the momentum that Denver had built up with their strong first quarter had been shot down.
For one, the Broncos had to play a man down in an already thin safety group. The hit from Jackson that kicked him out was dirty in nature, and was one of those moments where you said to yourself "If we lose this game, it all started with this." Well, the Broncos went on to squander their 18-point lead, fell to 0-2 to start the year, 0-2 at home, and came out much, much worse than they entered. In a nutshell, Jackson's hit and the end of that game perfectly sum up the Broncos' 2023 campaign so far.