The season was predicted to be a failure for the Broncos with many 'experts' saying the Broncos would win no more than 3 games this season, namely Jamie Dukes. The reason being that the Broncos had downgraded at QB from Cutler to Kyle Orton and that they hadn't upgraded their D-Line.
The Preseason didn't start great with the Broncos winning only 1 out of the 4 games. The Broncos seemed to make a lot of mental errors, but I think all the players were trying to get use to the new systems that were put in place. For example the Kyle Orton left handed throw, though now we know that Chris Simms couldn't do much better in that department. But as most Broncos fans saw there was a lot of young talent and promise in this team myself included. Now I am going to say I didn't think we would make the playoffs this year but I thought we would go close to 10 wins. Reason being that this was really a rebuilding season and it won't be till next year or even a few more good years before we become a feared team again. A few good Offseasons and we will be set.
Now on to the season and the first six games of the year, the highlight to many Bronco fans years.
F 12 - 7 vs Cincinnati
The Broncos played at Benegals home stadium to start off the year in what was a close hard fought defensive game. Also during pregame special teamer and fullback Spencer Larsen was injured in a freak accident that injured his shoulder which keeped him out for several weeks. To the game and the Broncos managed to hold off the Benegals for almost the entire game until the final minutes allowing the Benegals to get an late TD and the lead. This game would be decided on a Hail Mary pass to Brandon Marshall in triple coverage which was deflected to Brandon Stokley. Who was in the open field and ran in an easy TD that was the winning play. Which has now be named the 'the immaculate deflection' and will be remembered in Broncos folk law for a long time.
F 27 - 6 vs Cleveland
The second game of the season was another good one for the Broncos. As the Broncos run game came to town and Buckhalter ran all over the sorry Browns. Aided by his teammate Knowshon Moreno the Broncos managed to show what they way able to do on the ground with good run blocking. Against a bad team (at the time) the Broncos really needed to show that they were a force and dominate a lesser opponent. Also in this game Elvis 'Doom'ervil managed to record 4 sacks on Quinn and it would be the start of a good season for him.
This game isn't very memorable as the Raiders were merely a small bump in the road as the Broncos drove over them. QB Russell had a great game for the Broncos throwing intercepts to Goodman and Hill and the Broncos offense managed to capitalized on these mistakes and win an easy game.
F 17 - 10 vs Dallas
Now this was suppose to be the first game that was a true test for the Broncos against a tough opponent. And that was what happened, a really tough contest and a hard fought game. The Broncos took the lead when the Beast Brandon Marshall took a grab high above CB Newman and ran around Cowboys defenders for the score. For his celebration he ran down the Broncos sideline and gave the Broncos coach a big hug, making it look like the bridges between them had be mended. The game would be close with it going right down to the wire where Romo made a big mistake trying to take on Champ Bailey. You would have thought he would know better since Champ had already picked him off and stopped a scoring opportunity. Champ knocked down Romo's pass in the endzone on 4th down to secure the win for the Broncos.
F 20 - 17 vs New England
After beating the Cowboys, the Broncos where agian doubted and people keep saying that the Cowboys were a bad team. But when they faced the Patriots people knew this would be a big game with McD taking on his old team. This was a hard fought game, the Pats took an early lead and the Broncos managed to tie up the game in the 4th. The game would go to over time where the Broncos won the toss and moved the ball down field where Prater kicked the game winning field goal. But it is the moments that happened after this game that made it special. With McD celebration after the game and the fist pumping towards his family in the crowd was a magical moment.
F 34 - 23 vs San Diego
After the big game against the Patriots the Broncos would come up against a tough game against the Chargers who were at home. This was an odd game with 3 kick returns going for touchdowns. 2 of which were by Eddie Royal who had the best ST game of the year. The Broncos defense also helped greatly by sacking the crying Phillip Rivers 5 times. Also Tony Scheffler had a big game against the Chargers secondary as well and had over 100 yards and a TD. This was a big win for the Broncos and the players were flying high.
This would be the last game of real joy as after the bye the Broncos would tumble. But at this point the Broncos were on top of their game and playing good defense. The Broncos were posed for a deep playoff run and the Broncos fans were more than happy. In part 2 will look at the next 6 games and in part 3 will have a look at the last few games and the Offseason ahead.
~ Aussie Out