The Denver Broncos lost control over their playoff destiny when they lost to the San Diego Chargers in Week 15, 27-20. In order to get home-field advantage throughout the playoffs the Broncos will need to win out and hope the New England Patriots lose one of their final three games.
They could still get a first-round bye if they win on the road against the Texans and on the road against the Raiders over the next two weeks. A first-round bye will help them get rest, get healthy and better prepare for what they hope is a Super Bowl run.
The Broncos failed to score 25 points for the first time in 19 games. They played only 53 offensive snaps against the Chargers, compared to the 91 offensive snaps they played against the Titans the previous week.
The Chargers played “keep away” from Manning, and it worked. More teams may try this strategy going forward.
Manning talked after the game about dealing with this type of defensive strategy.
I’ve dealt with it before. Teams have tried a similar game plan before where they are snapping the ball with two seconds, one second (left on the clock). [San Diego Chargers QB] Philip [Rivers] looks like he calls a lot of plays at the line of scrimmage and he’s trying to get them into a good play. When they’re doing that they are taking a lot of time off the clock. But hey, it’s our job to score points when we have the ball, no matter if we have it for 40 minutes or 20 minutes. We had it for 20 tonight; we didn’t do a good enough job on offense and that’s something that we have to correct.
So when looking ahead to the playoffs what are the best and worst case scenario for the Broncos? Let’s take a look to see who the Broncos may run into during the tournament that is the NFL playoffs.
All quotes and injury/practice observations obtained firsthand. Record/statistical information provided via email from the Denver Broncos.