From The Armchair: Denver Broncos: Week 1
With Von Miller suspended for the first six games, Champ Bailey currently sidelined with a foot injury, and Elvis Dumervil now in Baltimore, there were a lot of question marks surrounding this group coming into the game. The main concern will remain that way heading into week two, and that is getting pressure on the QB. While the Broncos did sack Joe Flacco 4 times, 2.5 by newcomer Shaun Phillips, Flacco had way too much time in the pocket for most of the game. Other than that, there were a lot of good things that came out of this game. Dominique Rogers-Cromartie playing mostly against Torrey Smith had a great game. It’s intriguing to see what will happen with a healthy Champ Bailey on the other side. Throw in Chris Harris and Tony Carter and the Broncos have 4 solid cover corners.
Other guys that stood out are led by second year safety Duke Ihenacho. Dude was all over the place Thursday night leading the team with 12 tackles, has great ball hawking instincts and is a playmaker. Wesley Woodyard was solid in the middle and hopefully doesn’t have any lingering effects from his ankle injury late in the game. Thanks in part to Danny Trevathan whose ridiculously stupid fumble on his “should have been” pick 6 overshadowed what was otherwise a strong game. Lastly would be the run defense as a whole. They held the Ravens to 58 yards rushing, mainly due to the fact Flacco had to throw 62 times, but they looked pretty stout when they needed to be.
Oh, Wes Welker. How many times do you see it? You bring in your sure handed guy to eliminate mistakes on a punt and not only does he decide to field the punt inside the 10, he muffs it and hands the Ravens a touchdown on a platter on the ensuing possession. But not all was bad. Special teamer extraordinaire David Bruton came up with a huge punt block that lead to an eventual Broncos touchdown. It was good to see him get some primetime love.
Next up comes the battle of the Mannings in New York Sunday afternoon