So far in 2023, the Broncos have been a disaster. The team is 0-3, the roster has talent deficiencies all over the place and discussions about tanking for draft positioning have already begun. Denver is in a dark place right now. They need to win.
In week four, the Broncos will face one of the only teams arguably worse than them in the Chicago Bears. Both the Broncos and Bears have some of the league's worst defenses, but while the Broncos have an average offense, the Bears offense ranks around the bottom of the NFL. This may be one of the only games Denver is favored to win all year.
Much has been made about this game's potential to be the deciding factor for the number one draft pick, but while the idea of winning the Caleb Williams sweepstakes sounds like a dream, it is far too early in the season to think about draft position. For the sake of themselves, the organization and its fans, the Broncos must secure a victory, or they risk falling even further into a world of suck.
A win for the Broncos in week four would mean everything for team morale. The team has had nothing to celebrate since the season began, and each of its three losses has gotten progressively worse. Denver's latest loss- a historic 70-20 drubbing by the Dolphins- has launched the Broncos into the NFL's lowest tier, and made them an even stronger national laughing stock. They are in desperate need for something positive, and a win would provide that.
No, beating a lowly Bears squad would not magically catapult the Broncos onto the right track, but it would at least give tangible evidence that the team is capable of putting a full performance together. It would serve as a reminder that the Broncos players, while outmatched by most other teams, are still capable professionals that belong in the NFL.
At this point for the Broncos, it is a matter of pride. Last week's mess of a game brought the franchise to new lows, it had fans questioning not just the talent of the team, but the effort being put forth by those on the field. The drive, the heart and the overall work ethic of this team has been called into question. Sunday's matchup with Chicago will be a golden opportunity to set the record straight.
As mentioned earlier, a win against a bad Bears team would not mean the Broncos are on the path to turn things around. Denver's roster issues are too great to fix within a single season, and the new coaching staff is still figuring out how to optimize the roster. The Broncos are bad, and they will be bad for a while. While a win won't cure everything, it would at least give us something to smile about, and a smile would be worth the world to a team and a fanbase that, for all intents and purposes, have given up.