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Denver Broncos 2017-18 NFL Team Preview

Denver Broncos 2017-18 NFL Team Preview


Denver Broncos 2017 NFL Team Preview


NFL News and Previews


2017 Denver Broncos Preview

Key Additions: G Ronald Leary, OT Menelik Watson, DT Domata Peko, DT Zach Kerr,

Key Subtractions: NT Sylvester Williams, CB Kayvon Webster, OT Russell Okung, DE/DT Vance Walker,  DE/OLB DeMarcus Ware, LB Dekoda Watson, WR Jordan Norwood

Strengths

There weren’t that many situations last season that sends as much shivers down the spine of quarterbacks than knowing that they’re about to face the Broncos. While Denver missed the boat to the playoffs in 2016, it still finished with a winning 9-7 record, which should be mostly attributed to the Broncos’ merciless defense, particularly against the pass.

Denver possesses the same makeup this season to duplicate, if not surpass, the same quarterback-crippling pass rush they had last year, when they limited opponents to the least average passing yards per game (185.8) and yards pass (6.5). All that without the opponents really trying to avoid chucking the rock, as Denver saw foes attempt 34.5 passes per game, not even enough to be inside the top 10.

Von Miller leads the cast of quarterback-hungry Broncos group of quarterback-hungry pass rushers that also includes Shane Ray. Miller led the Broncos with 13.5 sacks last season while Ray had eight despite a crooked playing time. Denver was third in the league last season with 42.0 sacks and third and fourth in scoring defense and total defense, respectively.

Weaknesses

We could’ve seen Miller and Ray putting quarterbacks in body bags in the playoffs last season if only the Broncos had the same muscle on offense. The team was just 21st in the league with 20.8 points per game with Trevor Siemian as the regular starter. A bad offensive line greatly limited the Broncos’ offense. Opponents nearly had as much sacks (40) as Miller and company had in 2016.

A key offensive line piece in Russell Okung (signed with the Los Angeles Chargers) left this offseason though the Broncos used their first round pick on a projected replacement in Garett Bolles. The running game, meanwhile, is bound to get better after averaging just 92.8 yards per game, good for just 27th in the league. Denver used mainly C.J. Anderson and Devontae Booker on the ground last season and added Jamaal Charles last spring though Charles has had so many injuries that optimism on him being a huge playmaker on the team needs to be dampened a bit.

Key Player – The entire offensive line

The defense will remain as stingy with Miller and gang and we’ve seen how the Broncos’ stop unit carried this team to a respectable finish this season. But for the Broncos to get to the playoffs and have success there, the offense has to fly. That happening is something that largely depends on how well the offensive line has improved from last season’s diabolical irresponsibility.

Key Game – vs. New England (November 12)

If the Broncos are going to make it to the Super Bowl, they’d likely have to get past the Patriots first so this regular season game at home should serve as a preview of that potential postseason matchup. Apart from that, the Broncos will also be looking to avenge their 16-3 loss to Tom Brady and company in the same building last season.

2016 Team Stats

 

Category Stat (Rank)
Points per game 20.8 (#21)
Passing yards per game 230.3 (#21)
Rushing yards per game 92.8 (#27)
Scoring defense 18.6 (#3)

Writer’s Prediction

The Broncos, who are +310 to win the AFC West, finish with an 8-8 record.

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Rex
Written by Rex

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