Why are people treating the Broncos like they're Super Bowl favorites?
The Broncos are currently riding an 11-game winning streak. Let's just ignore the fact that they beat only 2 winning teams in that 11-game stretch, and the combined record of those 11 teams was 68-108. Throw in their other 2 wins, and the combined winning percentage of ALL teams they beat was .385, with a combined record of 80-128. Excuse me for remaining unimpressed.
They have home field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs. Let's conveniently overlook the fact that the only win that they have against teams remaining in the playoffs was over the Ravens, back when Terrell Suggs was sidelined and Ray Lewis was playing through injuries.
Several "experts" from NFL.com listed the Broncos as their Super Bowl winners, and honestly, I'm having trouble understanding why.
Among others, Ian Rapoport asks "How can you pick against a Manning-led Broncos team in cruise control?"
Well, Ian, I believe the better question would be how can you bet ON a Broncos team that really doesn't have any wins over legitimate Super Bowl contenders.
One of the common arguments that I've seen so far is that the Broncos are a much better team than they were early in the season, when they dropped 3 games to the Falcons, Patriots, and Texans.
But are the Broncos the only team who have improved? Are the Seahawks not vastly improved since Russell Wilson and company have gained experience playing together? Have the Patriots not improved with the acquisition of Aqib Talib, as well as their elite tight ends getting healthy? Have the 49ers not improved with Colin Kaepernick adding an extra dimension to their offense? Have the Ravens not improved with their elite linebackers getting healthy again?
The Broncos are a good team. Don't get me wrong. They earned their spot in the playoffs, and they have the #1 seed in the AFC for a reason.
That having been said, they still have to do something if they want to prove that they're REALLY Super Bowl contenders. Right now, I'm just not buying it.