The Denver Broncos opened up the 2023 NFL season with a loss to the Las Vegas Raiders at home. Most surprisingly to Broncos fans, the offense played well and showed more than just a basic level of competency, while the defense struggled with penalties, Jakobi Meyers, and generating any pressure. There were plenty of signs of hope for the Broncos in week one, but if a few aspects of their play don't turn around in week two, it could be a long first season for Sean Payton and company. Here are three worst-case scenarios for the Broncos in week two against the Washington Commanders.
3 worst-case scenarios for the Denver Broncos vs. Commanders
1) No Pass Rush Again
The Broncos struggled to generate any pass rush against the Raiders. Jimmy Garoppolo was not sacked once, and the Broncos gave up a few key rushes to the Raiders quarterback in major spots, including one that effectively put the game away. The Broncos were able to remain respectable against the Raiders rushing attack, but they did not pose any threat of getting into the backfield on passes.
The Broncos are not short of pass rush weapons, considering the arrival of Zach Allen and Frank Clark while returning names such as Jonathon Cooper, Baron Browning (who did not play in week one), Nik Bonitto, and Randy Gregory. This group figures to be a solid one, especially considering their depth. However, as a whole, the Broncos' edge rushers no-showed, and the interior of the offensive line struggled to get any pressure on the quarterback from their positions. This allowed Jimmy G. all the time he needed to empty out his arsenal. In the end, it was arguably the largest contributing factor to the Broncos' loss in week one, and another no-show in week two would paint all sorts of issues for the health of the Broncos' 2023 campaign.