5 Reasons Why the Denver Broncos Won’t Win the AFC West in 2014

5 Reasons Why the Denver Broncos Won't Win the AFC West

Peyton Manning
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Even after being trounced during February's Super Bowl, the Denver Broncos will open training camp this month as the heavy favorite in the AFC West. But here are five reasons why Peyton Manning and company won't lead Denver to a fourth consecutive division crown.

5. No Solidified RB

Montee Ball
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

5. No Solidified RB

Montee Ball
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Montee Ball showed some promise during his rookie year, but the loss of Knowshon Moreno, who was Denver's most productive and reliable back, leaves the Broncos without a solidified starter entering training camp. The No. 2 spot is up for grabs as well, so the Broncos could be in dire straits at the position if Ball doesn't pan out.

4. San Diego Chargers on the Rise

San Diego Chargers
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

4. San Diego Chargers on the Rise

San Diego Chargers
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Although the Kansas City Chiefs were the Broncos' toughest competition within the division in 2013, it's the San Diego Chargers who will dethrone John Fox's team this fall. An upper-echelon quarterback in Philip Rivers has been in place for 10 years, but a complete team finally began to take shape around him in 2013. The Chargers will take the next step this season, emerging as a legitimate Super Bowl contender.

3. History Hasn't Been Kind to Big Spenders

Aqib Talib
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

3. History Hasn't Been Kind to Big Spenders

Aqib Talib
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Broncos went all in this offseason to maximize Peyton Manning's Super Bowl window. History, however, hasn't been kind to teams that spend big in free agency. The additions of Aqib Talib, T.J. Ward and DeMarcus Ware all look great on paper, but obstacles like complacency, higher expectations and unfamiliarity could water down their impacts.

2. History Hasn't Been Kind to Runner Up

Broncos Super Bowl
Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

2. History Hasn't Been Kind to Runner Up

Broncos Super Bowl
Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

The disappointment of losing the Super Bowl has deflated many teams before, and given how badly the Broncos were thrashed by the Seahawks earlier this year, Denver might not be exempt. Since 2000, seven Super Bowl runner ups have failed to even reach the playoffs during the subsequent season.

1. Peyton Manning's Decline Will Begin

Peyton Manning
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

1. Peyton Manning's Decline Will Begin

Peyton Manning
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Peyton Manning didn't appear anywhere close to falling off last season, the most prolific campaign of his career. Still, at 38 years old, his decline is looming. He'll still be one of the game's most effective signal callers, for his intelligence if nothing else, but his age will finally begin to catch up to him in 2014.


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  • Dillon Pauls

    The Broncos SHOULD be a much better football in 2014, here’s why

    - Even if Manning declines a bit, he’s still a top 5 QB.
    - Moreno was reliable, but he’s no #1 RB. Ball was incredible in the 2nd half of last year, probably could’ve started over Moreno (but didnt). Heading into year 2, he’s only getting better.
    - Sanders IS and upgrade over Decker in that offense, and another nice addition with Latimer.
    - Clady coming back, Franklin to LG and Clark to RT, perfect for pass blocking and run blocking combination.
    - Ware may have had 6 sacks last year (Mathis is older and led the league in sacks last year, old guys can still get it done), but the surgery on his elbow should help him a whole lot. Give him a nice distraction with Miller (wasn’t in SB), top 5 pass rushing duo.
    - Talib statistcally played better than Revis last year. Health has been his only issue. Harris is probably the most underrated CB in the league, he’s the best nickel CB in the game. Roby WILL be a very nice piece to that secondary.
    - Moore and Carter coming back, that will boost that FS position. Ward is just now entering his prime, and I believe the “winning culture” there in Denver will only motivate him more (much like Knighton).

    The ONLY realistic hole they have is MLB. Irving played very well when he stepped in for Miller, so I expect him to play better than their previous MLBs (gulp, Lenon and Brooking). Another nice fact is they still have the same OC and DC, where SD lost their OC, that could be big imo…

  • Renaissance Man

    Cody Strahm, you are delusional. . . or wrote a piece that is sure to be clickbait. In which case you are manipulative. Regardless, you suck.

  • https://twitter.com/MALACHiOFCOURSE Malachi

    jackass writer, lol