ESPN simulated the 2023 NFL season, and it was not kind to the Denver Broncos

ESPN used their Football Power Index (FPI) to simulate the 2023 NFL season, and the Denver Broncos were once again an irrelevant team

Los Angeles Rams v Denver Broncos
Los Angeles Rams v Denver Broncos / Dustin Bradford/GettyImages
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Hopefully, the 2023 NFL season is much kinder to the Denver Broncos. ESPN's simulation of the upcoming season, if true, would be another painful year in Denver. I guess it would end up working out fine since an archrival of the Broncos did not win the Super Bowl, at least according to ESPN.

Seth Walder of ESPN released the 2023 NFL Simulation, and this is how it was done:

"To forecast the 2023 NFL season, ESPN's Football Power Index (FPI) simulates the season 20,000 times. That produces our projections, which are filled with probabilities, like the 14% chance the Eagles win the Super Bowl or the 43% chance the Lions win the NFC North."

Seth Walder

I guess it's nice to at least see ESPN using some type of data for this simulation instead of just projections from random people. Well, buckle up, because this could end up being another painful year for the Denver Broncos if their projections are true. They divided up the projections into chunks so we can see how teams are doing throughout the season.

According to ESPN, the Denver Broncos are an average of 2-2 through four games. Teams like the Miami Dolphins, Cincinnati Bengals, and Kansas City Chiefs, among a few other teams, are also 2-2 through four weeks. Denver plays their first four games against the Las Vegas Raiders, Washington Commanders, Miami Dolphins, and Chicago Bears, so I do reasonably see a 3-1 start for Denver.

But, being 2-2 is fine I guess. We don't need another record update until Week 16. At this point, ESPN projects the Broncos to be 6-9 at this point, so they'd go 4-7 over the next 11 games. The only other AFC team they have at 6-9 are the Indianapolis Colts, and I personally do not think the Colts win that many games in 2023.

The Baltimore Ravens and Kansas City Chiefs are standing atop the AFC standings at 11-4 through 15 games. The Tennessee Titans are 9-5-1 and would be the third-place team through 15 games in their simulation. The final regular season standings are a bit head-scratching.

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The Denver Broncos finish third in the AFC West with a 7-10 record. The Chiefs finished 13-4 and once again won the division. In ESPN's simulation, the seven AFC playoff teams are the Jets, Bills, Dolphins, Ravens, Bengals, Titans, and Chiefs. To me, I don't think these projections are super accurate, especially seeing the Titans as a division champion again.

Anyway, Denver finishes 7-10 and obviously does not make the playoffs. Hopefully, ESPN's 2023 NFL season simulation is far from the real thing.

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