5 reasons the Denver Broncos can go from worst to first in 2023
5. The secondary continues to grow, become dominant
Almost the entire focus of this post thus far has been the idea that if the Broncos are better offensively, they've got a shot to go from worst to first in the AFC West. But as we know, the defense is going to have to continue playing at the high level we've seen over the last seven years as the offense has struggled.
Specifically, the Broncos need their secondary to be the strength of this team, shutting out some of the top receivers they will face throughout the year and making life difficult for opposing quarterbacks by jumping passing lanes, getting their hands on the ball, and dominating their one-on-one coverage.
The Broncos have arguably the best cornerback and the best safety in the NFL in Pat Surtain II and Justin Simmons. Together, those guys are the gold standard in terms of size, athletic ability, production, and consistency.
Outside of those two, there are some question marks, but there are also a ton of young players and veterans alike who have potential to be the best secondary in the league this coming season if they live up to that potential.
Damarri Mathis showed tremendous growth this past year as a rookie, and he's now joined at the outside cornerback position by rookie Riley Moss, another athletic option at the position. Veterans K'Waun Williams and Kareem Jackson return this year to give the Broncos more leadership and consistency at their respective positions, and third-year player Caden Sterns is expected to take a big step forward this season as well.
If defensive coordinator Vance Joseph and defensive backs coach Christian Parker can keep getting the best out of the personnel the Denver Broncos have in the secondary, then this team is going to be able to do more than just hang around in every game. This unit is going to be key from going worst to first, or last place to playoffs.