Without substantial changes on the offensive line and at quarterback, the Denver Broncos will swiftly become a mediocre team. Compared to the team’s Super Bowl-winning performance last season, this season has been mediocre at best. Yes, since 2015 Denver’s defense has led the NFL in every significant statistical category; it’s the best defense in football. Unfortunately, the dearth of offensive production and efficiency resulted in a rather frustrating season, especially for Broncos’ fans. At this rate, John Elway might as well hire Tim Tebow to become the new starting quarterback and the Alabama Crimson Tide’s entire offensive line. Although the previous sentence proffered to elicit humor is absurd in many ways, it underscores the fact that John Elway must make moves that will produce better seasons in the future than this one.
After last night’s complete spanking delivered by the Kansas City Chiefs and last week’s 16 -3 loss to the New England Patriots, the Broncos demonstrated that they weren’t true Super Bowl contenders, even with an elite, record-setting defense.
How can a team possess an elite, record-setting defense and not be authentic Super Bowl contenders? Enter Trevor Siemian and the Denver offensive line. While many point to Siemian’s numbers not being too shabby, his current performance will never position the Broncos as real AFC and Super Bowl contenders.
Siemian could have performed much better had he been able to benefit from a quality offensive line, however. Let’s face it: Denver’s offensive line is horrible, and this atrocious offensive line is the single most important reason why the team had an average season, one where it will watch teams like the Houston Texans, Miami Dolphins and Oakland Raiders play in the playoffs. Sitting at home on the couch watching these teams play should unsettle Denver and the team’s executive leadership.
Having said all of this, it’s not time for a massive panic in Denver. The team has an outstanding defense and some excellent skill players. What’s needed to win a Super Bowl is present, except on the offensive line and at quarterback. Make some quick and effective hires and trades and return to winning, Mr. Elway.
Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels
University of Wisconsin-Madison