Denver Broncos: 5 Bold Predictions for the 2011 NFL Season

Randy ChambersAnalyst IJune 21, 2011

Denver Broncos: 5 Bold Predictions for the 2011 NFL Season

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    DENVER - DECEMBER 26:  Quarterback Tim Tebow #15 of the Denver Broncos rolls out and looks to deliver a pass against the Houston Texas at INVESCO Field at Mile High on December 26, 2010 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Texans 24-23.  (Photo b
    Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

    The Denver Broncos struggled last season and finished with a disappointing 4-12 record. With some solid draft selections and a new coach in John Fox, the Broncos look to turn things around in 2011. 

    With the lockout still in effect, nobody knows what the 2011 NFL season has in store. That doesn't stop us from making predictions.

    Here are five bold predictions for your 2011 Denver Broncos season.

Knowshon Moreno Will Have 1,200 Yards and 15 Total Touchdowns

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    GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 12:  Runningback Knowshon Moreno #27 of the Denver Broncos runs with the football during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on December 12, 2010 in Glendale, Arizona.  The Cardinals defe
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Why is it bold?

    Knowshon's best season was his rookie year, where he had 947 yards and seven touchdowns. He only has 17 total touchdowns in two years combined. He also had a hard time staying healthy last year. 

     

    Why it will happen

    Offensive coordinator Mike McCoy wants to take it back to the way the Denver Broncos used to play football, and that's running the ball. When McCoy was in Carolina, he ran the ball over 50 percent of the time and expects to do similar things in Denver.

    Good news if you're Moreno.

    You combine Moreno's talent and lots of carries, you'll get great numbers.

Kyle Orton Will Lose His Starting Job Going into the Bye Week

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    KANSAS CITY, MO - DECEMBER 05:  Quarterback Kyle Orton #8 of the Denver Broncos in action during the game against the Kansas City Chiefs on December 5, 2010 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    Why is it bold?

    Kyle Orton has been a solid quarterback for Denver the last two seasons, throwing for over 7,000 yards and 41 touchdowns combined. The other quarterbacks on the depth chart may have potential but lack the experience. 

     

    Why it will happen

    Despite the good numbers Orton has put up over the last two seasons, there are games where he has looked shaky. In Weeks 12 and 13, he threw a combined zero touchdowns and three interceptions before he was benched for Tim Tebow.

    The first five games of the season are against the Raiders, Bengals, Titans, Packers and Chargers. The Broncos could easily start the season 2-3 or worse.

    With two quarterbacks sitting on the bench with lots of potential, one of them will get a shot due to the Broncos' poor start.

Tim Tebow Will Have at Least 30 Total Touchdowns

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    Why is it bold?

    He is not even the starter heading into the season and has only played a total of three games. 

     

    Why it will happen

    If you read the last slide, I said Kyle Orton will be benched. His replacement will be Tim Tebow, just like it was last season. If Brady Quinn was going to play, it would have happened already.

    Tim Tebow played very well in his nine games as a rookie, throwing five touchdowns and rushing for another six. He showed he can pass the ball well and can still run like he did in college. His leadership rubs off on the team and it shows in their play.

    Whether you like Tebow or not, you can't deny that his upside is tremendous and he has a future in this league.

Eddie Royal Will Run Three Punts/Kickoffs Back for Touchdowns

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    LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 31:  Eddie Royal #19 of Denver Broncos runs with the ball during the NFL International Series match between Denver Broncos and San Francisco 49ers at Wembley Stadium on October 31, 2010 in London, England. This is the fourth occa
    Ian Walton/Getty Images

    Why it is bold?

    Eddie Royal was limited last season in the return game because they wanted him to get more involved in the offense. In three years, he has taken only one punt and one kickoff back for a touchdown. 

     

    Why it will happen

    Special teams coordinator Jeff Rodgers is counting on Royal to get more involved in the special teams this season. Denver will not run so many three to four wide receiver sets since they want to run the ball more, which will limit Royal on the offensive side of the ball.

    Royal will fill mainly a special teams role, and with his 4.4 speed, you better believe he will get in the end zone at least three times.

Von Miller Will Lead the Team in Sacks

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    ENGLEWOOD, CO - APRIL 29:  Von Miller of the Denver Broncos is presented to the media for the first time with vice president of football operations John Elway at Dove Valley on April 29, 2011 in Englewood, Colorado. Miller, a projected outside linebacker
    Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

    Why is it bold?

    He is a rookie that is stuck in a lockout and will have to learn the defense on the fly.

     

    Why it will happen

    The Broncos were terrible at getting to the quarterback last season, finishing with just 23 sacks on the season. Linebacker D.J. Williams led the team with 5.5 sacks.

    Now, the Broncos have added Von Miller, the linebacker out of Texas A&M who will be the starting linebacker on the strong side. Miller is 6'3'', 246 pounds and finished his four-year career at A&M with 32.5 sacks, 27.5 of them coming in his last two seasons.

    Miller will be punishing opposing quarterbacks for years to come.

    He already got the stamp of approval from legendary quarterback John Elway, who said, "He's a type of guy that comes around every 10 years."