Denver Broncos: Five Keys to Victory
Five Keys to Victory for the Denver Broncos
The Denver Broncos have survived that first seven game stretch that everyone has talked about since the schedule came out last April. A record of 4-3 does not sound great but when you consider the circumstances, it’s a rather impressive mark. On top of the schedule, the Broncos were learning a new system on offense and defense. They were also learning to play with one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time in Peyton Manning.
Manning, himself, was coming off of four neck surgeries and no one knew what to expect. Even Manning was unsure of how he would play, especially early in the season. The questions of Manning’s health and ability have been answered as he is off to one of his best starts ever. He gets better every week and if he continues to play at this level, then the Broncos have a chance to be playing in late January; if not February. So what’s the challenge going forward for Manning and the Broncos?
Through the first seven games, the Broncos were either underdogs or in games that could go either way. It’s easy to get up for those types of games but now the scene changes. They are probably going to be favored in every game they play for the rest of the season; some experts even believe they will be favored versus the Baltimore Ravens in mid-December.
The challenge, starting with the game versus the Bengals, is winning the games they are supposed to win. The Broncos have put themselves in great shape but it can all go away very quickly if they get lazy, and do not take care of business. That being said, here are the five keys for a Denver Broncos victory on Sunday.
Protecting Number 18
The Broncos must protect Manning! The Bengals secondary is suspect at best, but their defensive line is good and can get after the quarterback. The offensive line for the Broncos has been playing well over the past four weeks, if they continue to protect Manning on Sunday then the Broncos offense will put up another 30+ points.
Run the Rock
The best way to neutralize a good pass rush is with the running game, so Willis McGahee and Ronnie Hillman must be big on Sunday. While McGahee and Hillman have to play well, but the onus once again is on the offensive line. If the five guys up front play well, then the Broncos as a team have very little to worry about.
Play Like a Champ
Wide-receiver, AJ Green is the Bengals only real offensive threat and if the Broncos take him away then the Bengals will have a difficult time scoring points. Champ Bailey will be assigned to Green but the Broncos should provide safety help over the top. That’s not a shot at the very proud Bailey; it’s just obvious that if you take away Green then the Bengals offense is in trouble. This is about winning, not about one-on-one matchups.
Dominate the Line of Scrimmage
The Bengals have not been able to run the ball all season, and the Broncos must keep it down. Force the Bengals to pass and then get after quarterback, Andy Dalton. Dalton has some talent but he tends to lock on Green and holds onto the football until Green is open. The Broncos pass rush should be in for a big day on Sunday if they take away the run, and force the Bengals into obvious passing situations.
Sly Like a Fox
Here’s the biggest key to victory on Sunday, play hard and with a purpose. If the Broncos go into Cincinnati and play like they are capable of playing, then the game could be over by the fourth quarter. The only way this is a dangerous game is if the Broncos don’t take the Bengals seriously.
If the Broncos go in and jump on top of the Bengals quickly, then there’s nothing to worry about. However if the Bengals are in the game into the third quarter, then it will be nervous time. The best thing the Broncos can do is take their first drive and go 80 yards for a score. That’s a key you can all look for as the game begins on Sunday.
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