NFL  > General NFL  > Season Preview : Denver Broncos
September 4, 2013, 12:11 PM
The Broncos had a great offseason as they added some good players to get even better. But, they lost one of their better pass rushers in Elvis Dumervil via a fax snafu and they will be without Von Miller the first 6 games due to his suspension. This probably just means Peyton Manning and company will be lighting up the scoreboard at a record pace. Regardless, once the playoffs roll around, this will be a team to watch out for.

The offense

It starts and stops with Manning, if he gets hurt and misses a significant amount of time, they are drafting in the top 5. So, it???s surprising that they would not sign a veteran backup and decide to go with Brock Osweiler as the 2nd string quarterback. Manning is the trigger man and his offensive talent needs to come through.

Manning had a great year (career high 68.6%, 291 yards per game, 37 touchdowns, just 11 interceptions) coming off neck surgery and he should be even better this year.

Neither DJ or David believe the hype

Keeping Manning healthy is of vital importance, like I mentioned earlier. Willis McGahee was the best blocking running back they had and they released him after he was upset they drafted Montee Ball. Ball and Ronnie Hillman should be effective running the ball, but they will have to improve their blocking. Knowshon Moreno is facing a make or break year in his 5th NFL season, he needs to step up or be a casualty of failing to meet expectations.

The wide receivers are possibly the best trio in the NFL. Demaryius Thomas had a breakout season last year (94 catches, 15.3 yards per catch, 60 first downs, 29 plays of at least 20 yards, and 10 TD???s) and is the game changer Manning needs to stretch the field. 538 of his yards came after he caught the ball. He may be the next Calvin Johnson.

Eric Decker had a pretty damn good season also (85 catches, 12.5ypc, 52 FD???s, and 13 TD???s) and he provides Manning with the possession receiver. Actually, Decker reminds me of Ed McCaffrey, the possession WR John Elway had when they were winning Super Bowls.

The rich got richer when they signed free agent Wes Welker (118 catches, 72 of those for first downs and 6 TD???s) away from the New England Patriots. Welker will be an upgrade over last years slot receiver, Brandon Stokely. Welker will give Manning all kinds of interesting combinations to work with, especially in 3 receiver sets. Andre Caldwell was banged up last year (played in just 8 games) and managed just 1 catch, but he should be able to rebound and give them 35-40 catches as a backup. If he can stay healthy, Manning might be a serious candidate for MVP.

Manning will also have a good 1-2 duo of tight ends, Jacob Tamme and Joel Dreesen. Tamme had a solid season last year being reunited with Peyton (52 catches, 10.7ypc, 29 FD???s and 2 TD???s ) and Dreesen (41 catches and 5 TD???s) gives them a solid blocker.

The offensive line is very good, Manning was sacked just 21 times in 583 pass attempts. The man protecting Manning???s blind side is Ryan Clady, probably the best left tackle in the entire League. Zach Beadles is the left guard and gives the left side a definite strength. Manny Ramirez is a decent center. On the right side at guard will be former Charger Louis Vasquez and Orlando Franklin at tackle. Vasquez is one of the better guards in the NFL and was a huge loss for San Diego. Franklin will benefit from playing next to Vasquez.

http://tinyurl.com/mez82vp
 
September 4, 2013  12:18 PM ET

This team can take a nap and still win the division handily. And people say the East is weak. HA!!! It is but the West is just as much.

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