Let’s get this straight; folks are missing the forest for the trees when it comes to the Denver Broncos. All fingers of blame are directly pointed at the Broncos defense and the offseason critics have been vocal and consistent; the defense needs reworked. Of course, it is my assumption that most critics base their findings merely on what happened in the AFC Divisional Playoff loss to the Baltimore Ravens. The rest of those up in arms about the Denver D draw their opinions from listening to the first group.
It is my contention that – and I may be way off base here – the Broncos simply had a bad game. If you throw out the Ravens game and look at this team from a season long perspective, the stats support my assessment. How can you argue the effectiveness of a squad that finished as a top five NFL defense last year?
Broncos’ safety, Rahim Moore has been the proverbial scapegoat for the entire collapse, and many have called for his replacement in the Broncos’ secondary. Lost on most is the fact that the former UCLA Bruin in only his second season had a solid year with the Broncos. Others have claimed that Champ Bailey should be moved to safety or exited from the game. Forgotten is the fact that Bailey was once again a member of the AFC Pro Bowl team. Generally, that is indicative of a solid season.
John Elway has recently been scrutinized for allowing Elvis Dumervil to leave, not signing a Dwight Freeney or John Abraham at defensive end and drafting a running back far too early in the NFL Draft. For Elway to allow the exit of Dumervil he had to feel confident in the personnel he had available to fill the void left by “Doom.” Although in the twilight of his career, it’s been reported that Freeney is asking a fifth year DE salary and drafting a running back WAS the one significant need the Broncos needed in the off season. If you doubt this fact refer back to the Ravens game and watch the short yardage opportunities the Broncos failed on. That was a season long Broncos’ epidemic.
Of course, the way I see it, questioning Elway seems a bit irrational. He is the individual whose leadership vaulted the Broncos to an AFC West title one year after the complete dismantling of the franchise by Bill Belichick wannabe Josh McDaniels.
Have no fear Broncos Country; the franchise remains in good hands. Denver has had a successful offseason in free agency, and they addressed needs in the draft. In most power rankings, you will find the Broncos are the perennial AFC favorite. Take what you read with a grain of salt, and remember – Elway has never led this franchise astray.