The Good and the Bad in the Denver Broncos Win Over the San Diego Chargers


The Denver Broncos won their fourth straight AFC West title with a gutsy road win over the San Diego Chargers on Sunday. It wasn’t always pretty but once again, the Broncos proved they can beat you in a lot of different ways now.

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Quarterback Peyton Manning played with the flu and the Broncos lost a number of key players throughout the game, and found a way to get it done. The Broncos are playing winning, playoff football. There’s plenty to like and only a couple of things not to like.

The Defense: The Broncos held the Chargers to 10 points and had complete control of the game for most of the day. The secondary led by Chris Harris Jr. played their best game of the season and Aqib Talib and Rahim Moore both had huge interceptions in the fourth quarter. The Chargers could not run the ball and their receivers struggled to get open. The Broncos defense gets better every week and appear to be peaking at the right time.

Peyton Manning: His numbers were not huge but he was extremely effective, and made the big throws when he had to. Oh and he did it with the flu. For those of you who were freaking out about Manning after last week’s performance versus the Buffalo Bills, take a look at Aaron Rodgers numbers today versus that same defense. Rodgers was far worse than Manning.

The offensive line: In a physical football game where yards were hard to come by, the offensive line opened some holes for CJ Anderson and protected Manning. They also did it without left tackle, Ryan Clady for much of the day.

Demaryius Thomas: After a couple of rough weeks and a foot injury, Thomas had a big day on Sunday. He had over 100 yards and made a good play to score the Broncos only touchdown.

Connor Barth: Or should we just call him money? Barth was 5 for 5 and hit two, crucial long field goals in the fourth quarter to give the Broncos a two score lead. One was a 49 yarder and it was right down the middle.

Guts: The Chargers were desperate and needed the win to stay in the playoff race and the Broncos were beat up, and they gutted out a win. Again, that was the type of game that people said the Broncos could not win and they found a way.

Division Champions: No that’s not the ultimate goal but never take winning for granted. The Broncos have now won four straight division titles and only need one win in their final two games to wrap up a first-round bye. Don’t be surprised if the Broncos decide to rest some key players who are beat up versus the Cincinnati Bengals next Monday night.

What I didn’t like:

The injuries: The Broncos were a little beat up going into to the game and lost some key players during the contest. At this point, none of them appear to be serious but giving those players a weeks off might be smart.

The pass rush: As well as the defense played, it would have been nice to get a little more pressure on the quarterback. However they only gave up 10 points and that’s the only number that matters.

The Broncos have won four straight games and are proving that they are now more than a one-trick pony. They are a physical team that can win in a multitude of ways.