The Denver Broncos went into Arrowhead Stadium to visit arguably the worst team in the NFL today, the Kansas City Chiefs, and were very lucky to come out with a win and even more important, Peyton Manning still alive. The Chiefs bullied the Broncos lines all day, while controlling the time of possession for most of the game behind the consistent running of Jamal Charles.
The Chiefs harassed Manning all day sacking him only twice, but hitting him several times and deflecting six passes. This turned out to be a grinding and grueling game between divisional opponents that have a rich history. It was good to see that even when the Broncos do not play at their best level, they always have an opportunity to win.
Manning missed his targets 15 times while throwing two TDs and an INT, but still gave the Broncos every opportunity to beat a Chiefs team that came in 1-9. Knowshon Moreno was finally let out of the doghouse, contributing 85 yards on 20 carries. Although that may seem like a good day, he was also rushing against the league’s 25th ranked run defense, so the jury is still out if he will retain a job if and when Willis McGahee returns.
The Broncos offensive line was manhandled throughout the afternoon, and the pass rush was non-existent. It’s a good thing that Brady Quinn is not a quality QB, or he might have truly picked apart the Broncos defense. Quinn had all the time in the world, but was only able to hand off to Charles, because the receivers were well guarded and he could not make the throws that needed to thread the needle.
If this was a more multidimensional offense instead of the Chiefs, the Broncos lose this game by quite a bit. Hopefully they get the rust out of the run game and come out next week looking more in sync against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. If not, they will be looking at their fourth loss of the year, and will be all but out of the possibility of gaining the two-seed in the AFC.
All the credit has to go to Chiefs Head Coach Romeo Crennel, who had a good game plan against the AFC West leading Broncos. He had his team focused and poised for the upset, but John Fox’s squad proved just a bit too much for them to handle in the end, finally closing it out, 17-9.
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