There seems to be a disconnect between the expectations the Denver Broncos have for this year’s team and the National perception.
ESPN, for example pegs the Broncos at 8-8 and last in the AFC West (which they’ve picked the Chargers to win, so….grain of salt).
Sports Illustrated goes even darker. They have Denver at 4-12. Last in the AFC.
USA Today? Also giving the Broncos a 4-12 prediction.
As a native of Denver and lifelong local sports fan, I’m used to Colorado being disregarded. The Rams and Buffs get no respect. The Rockies have June swooned again and have been dismissed. It’s been 15 years since anyone noticed the Avalanche, nationally. The Nuggets are legendary in their disrespect. Fans have even named it Nugglife.
The Broncos were different. Denver has always been one of the benefit-of-the-doubt NFL franchises. Elway and Manning certainly solidified the franchise’s clout. Under Pat Bowlen’s ownership, the Broncos have even been said to have dethroned the Dallas Cowboys as America’s Team as recently as 2014. The Broncos earn national respect. There is the component of Pat Bowlen’s health. We had the Trevor Siemian-Paxton Lynch gamble at the QB position. There were free agent disasters all along the offensive line. Whatever combination of things has contributed to the decline in the Broncos esteem, winning cures all.
Here are five Broncos that will impact Denver’s reputation and performance in 2018: