The Broncos lose and all is lost … or not
It's just Week 1, people
Chill. The. Heck. Out.
This is our standard admonition after Week 1 of the NFL season. No team is as bad or as good as it looks after one game, except for the Miami Dolphins, who are clearly tanking for Tua Tagovailoa.
Just last year the Buccaneers beat the Saints, 48-40, with Fitzmagic, baby. The Saints made the NFC Championship game — and might have gone further were a flag thrown — after getting torched by Tampa Bay and Ryan Fitzpatrick.
Aaron Rodgers led the Pack past the Bears in a fantastic comeback, and Chicago, not Green Bay, went to the playoffs. The Cowboys lost to the Carolina Panthers, and Dallas won the NFC East. The Broncos beat the Seahawks and Case Keenum looked pretty good doing it.
The Broncos started 4-0 in 2016, 2-0, in 2017 and 2-0 in 2018, and went 0-for-the-playoffs during that span.
Or maybe panic
So, given that previous stat, maybe it’s a good thing that the Denver Broncos laid an egg in a 24-16 loss to the Antonio Brown-less Oakland/Los Angeles/Irvine/Las Vegas Raiders?
Not really. Wow. That wasn’t good. The Broncos made the hapless Raiders look good and that’s an accomplishment.
One thing in which I’d take solace were I a Broncos fan — perish the thought — is that coach Vic Fangio didn’t play the regulars very much during the preseason. With preseason being a worthless anachronism, Denver avoided some injuries — the team couldn’t afford to break Joe Flacco in exhibitions — and the Broncos looked rusty.
They’ll play better next week. The only problem is that the Bears are coming to town, and they’re likely in a foul mood after losing to the Packers, 10-3.
The Broncos’ red-zone offense was atrocious. Don’t put that all on Flacco, though. His receivers — catch the darn ball, DaeSean Hamilton — didn’t help. The defense looked like Swiss cheese.
That should get better? Really there’s too much talent in the front seven for it to be that bad, right? You still have to convince me on the secondary.
It’s a little early for firing Fangio, Elway, and Flacco, as bad as Monday looked.
• Yes, everyone’s aboard the Patriots Express after they throttled the Steelers and also have Brown coming into the fold. It’s hard not to argue, but the Steelers also aren’t that good.
As much as a head case as Brown is and whether the team wanted to pay Le’Veon Bell or not, it’s hard for a team to lose that much talent. It showed. The Patriots, however, remain annoyingly good.
• The New York Football Giants aren’t good, but when Dak Prescott throws four touchdowns and the Cowboys only get 51 yards on 13 carries from Ezekiel Elliott, the Cowboys might have some balance.
• Tyreek Hill goes down, but the Chiefs still have Sammy Watkins. Oh, boy. The league still isn’t catching up with Pat Mahomes.
Don’t freak out
• Everyone happily piled on the Cleveland Browns after Tennessee body-slammed them, 43-13. Yes, it was a very Browns-ish opener, but does anyone want to win the AFC North? The Ravens played the Dolphins and the Fish made Lamar Jackson look like a Mahomes. We’ve already discussed the Steelers and the Bengals are the Bengals.
The Browns play the Jets next week. The funeral ain’t scheduled yet.
• We have also seen a premature burial of Mitch Trubisky and the Bears after Week 1. He’s a good quarterback and the Bears are better than they showed.
• We might have come to the point where the Jacksonville Jaguars might actually want Blake Bortles back? He’s with the Rams. Nick Foles, the savior, could not transport his Philly magic to Florida and broke his collar bone.
• The J-E-T-S, Jets, Jets Jets … ‘Nuff said.
• Dear Miami, could you at least pretend you’re trying? Scary thought here — the Dolphins’ upcoming schedule is New England, at Dallas, home for the Chargers and a bye. Bye is favored by 13 points.