Mark it down...the Broncos have the most complete, talented, balanced squad in college football.
Yeah, they gave up 24 points to a team that struggled to beat an underwhelming Louisville squad, and yes they beat down a bottom-feeder the week before that, and barely snuck out of D.C. with a win over Virginia Tech. But, that doesn't even begin to show how talented this Broncos squad is.
Start with the offense.
Kellen Moore is the most talented QB in the country. He isn't fast, and he isn't huge. He won't be a top five, or heck, even a top-five round draft pick. But the Broncos sweet tossing lefty is second-to-none. He has better accuracy than Arkansas' Ryan Mallet, more experience than Florida's John Brantley, more pocket awareness than Michigan's Denard Robinson, and more weapons at his disposal that Ohio State's Terrelle Pryor.
Their three-headed RB corps ranks second to Alabama's duo of Ingram and Richardson, but that's it. Between the three of them they have power, speed, and elusiveness.
Their one-two wide receiver tandem is the best in the nation. Yes, Julio Jones or A.J. Green may be more talented than Pettis or Young, but no wideout in the country has a partner lining up opposite them that complements them as well as Austin or Titus.
Their offensive line, while still young and developing, has the potential to develop into one of the best and most experienced in the country. And with as many as 11 players rotating on the line over the past two years, they certainly have the deepest O-line in the nation.
No team has more talent at tight-end. Kyle Efaw has the size and speed to be a legit down-field threat (as you saw against TCU last year, and versus OSU on Saturday), and all Tommy Gallarda does is catch touchdowns. He's probably the best red-zone tight-end target in all of college football.
On defense, the Broncos boast one of the most impressive defensive lines west of the Mississippi River. Everybody knew that Ryan Winterswyk was all-conference, but he'll most certainly be joined on that list by Shea McClellin, who added another half-sack on Saturday night. And junior Tyrone Crawford and redshirt freshman Ricky Tjong-a-Tjoe provide welcomed energy. Chase Baker is a run-stuffer extraordinaire and Billy Winn has the biggest non-stop motor of them all.
This unit held Jacquizz Rodgers to 46 yards and a 2.6 yards per carry average. As a whole, they held OSU to only 78 yards on 33 carries. Against Virginia Tech, the Broncos stifled Heisman candidate Ryan Williams to 44 yards on 21 carries. And against Wyoming, the squad held the Cowboys to negative 21 yards.
The Broncos line-backing corps is one of the most underrated units in the country, but there's plenty of talent there. Aaron Tevis, Byron Hout, J.C. Percy, Hunter White, and Derrell Acrey have all made huge plays over the past few years, and when combined with the Broncos young, yet very deep secondary, the Broncos are almost impossible to pass on.
That secondary is led by safety Jeron Johnson, who is most certainly All-WAC, and possibly second-or-third team All-American. He can fly, has great hands and can lay some serious wood.
George Iloka has three passes defended, and has become a tackle machine, and we all saw what Jamar Taylor is capable of, forcing two fumbles and laying out OSU QB Ryan Katz on the second play of the game. Winston Venable makes play after play and is always around the ball as a linebacker-cornerback hybrid. And that doesn't even include Brandyn Thompson, the Broncos best all-around defensive back, who had key interceptions in the Fiesta Bowl last year, and a three-INT game against Hawaii the year before.
Moving on to special teams, Boise has an experienced kicker who has solved his problems with field goals from the left hash-mark, and now really shows no weaknesses. He's 8-for-9 on the season, and has nailed 11-of-12 PATs.
Kyle Brotzman is also the Broncos punter and he has used every kick imaginable to become one of the top punters in the country, even though he doesn't get the credit he deserves. Time and time again last year, he pinned teams inside their own five with 60- and 70-yard rugby kicks.
And to top it all off, they have one of the games most innovative thinkers in head coach Chris Petersen, and one of the top young offensive coordinators in Brian Harsin. And don't forget that their defensive coordinator was talented enough that he was lured (by the millions) away to Tennessee to restore their once proud defensive tradition.
Like I said, top all-around, balanced team in the country.
Eat your heart out Alabama.