The day that will define the Denver Broncos season has arrived.
The season will not be over with a loss, but making the playoffs from 2-4 and two games behind the San Diego Chargers would be tough. With a loss, the Broncos would have to go 8-2 over the last ten games just to get to 10-6 for the season. Looking around the AFC through six weeks, it’s hard to imagine that a team would win one of the wildcard spots with less than ten wins.
That’s the pessimistic side – now for the optimistic side and a bold prediction: If the Broncos beat the Chargers tonight, they will win the AFC West! The Broncos and Chargers would be tied atop the division at 3-3, but the Broncos would have two distinct advantages. The obvious advantage is they would have beaten the Chargers in San Diego, and have a big leg up on any tiebreakers. The Chargers would still have to come to Denver later in the season, and the Broncos would be 2-0 in the division.
The second advantage is that the Broncos, with a win, would emerge from their brutal six game stretch to start the season tied for first. Their remaining ten games, while not easy, are more favorable. Some of the games in the second half of the season that looked tough at the start of the season look much more winnable now. The Carolina Panthers and Cincinnati Bengals are not playing well and a split, if not a sweep, of those two road games is very possible.
The New Orleans Saints are not the Saints that we have come to know, and even the Baltimore Ravens now look vulnerable with the loss of Ray Lewis for the season. Then there are the games with the Kansas City Chiefs, Oakland Raiders, Cleveland Browns and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Broncos will be big favorites in those five games.
It’s the NFL and anything can happen from week to week, but if the Denver Broncos beat the San Diego Chargers tonight on Monday Night Football, they will win the AFC West – I guarantee it!
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