The Good and the Bad in the Denver Broncos Loss to the New England Patriots


The Denver Broncos were blown out by the New England Patriots on Sunday and will have to dig deep to find a way to overcome that one. It’s one thing to lose but teams with championship dreams do not get beat like that, even on the road.

The good news, if there is any, is the Broncos are still in control of the AFC West and have three very winnable games coming up, but they are not in the Patriots class.

What I liked:

The run defense: If there was one positive, it was the fact that the Broncos continue to stop the run extremely well. It doesn’t seem like it today but that will serve them well going forward.

It’s one game: Again it feels like the season ended on Sunday but it didn’t. In reality, the Patriots and the Broncos are tied at 6-2. Yes the Patriots have the tiebreaker due to Sunday’s win but they face a tough schedule in the second half, and everything is still up for grabs.

Now having pointed those two things out, there was not much to like about the Broncos performance on Sunday and they have a lot of work to do going forward.

What I didn’t like:

The Broncos looked overwhelmed: For the second time this season, the Broncos looked awed by the moment. It happened in Seattle and it happened again on Sunday versus the Patriots. The Broncos are going to have to find a way to settle down in big games.

The defense: After looking so good for so long, the defense on Sunday looked a lot like the one that was so bad last season. It would be mistake to throw the baby out with the bath water and declare this is the same old defense, but it was definitely a step back. The Broncos could not get any pressure on Tom Brady and the secondary had a difficult time staying with the Patriots’ receivers.

The running game: Much like the defense, the Broncos newfound running game was a no show on Sunday. The Broncos were forced to throw the ball almost exclusively and the Patriots took advantage of that.

The game plan on Rob Gronkowski: Everyone including the Broncos talked all week about how important it would be to have a plan to limit Gronkowski, and it looked like the defense didn’t even know he was on the field.

Special teams: It’s been masked because the Broncos have been winning but the special teams continue to be terrible. They have no return game to speak of and the punt return for a touchdown basically ended the competitive portion of the football game.

The Nate Irving injury: The Broncos can and most likely will bounce back but if Irving is lost for any amount of time, that’s a loss that will be tough to overcome. They are already missing Danny Trevathan and another hit to the linebackers is not what this defense needed. They will need rookies Lamin Barrow and Corey Nelson to step up.

It seems like the season is over and there’s a lot to be discouraged by, especially if the Broncos have to play the Patriots again in the playoffs but be careful. The Broncos are still a very good football team who did not play well on Sunday.

It’s onto the next one and the Broncos have to find a way put this one behind them.