Even though the team has shown progress in many areas, there was a lot of ground to gain in order to become at least proficient in some areas. If this team continues to improve in these five areas, they might be ready to challenge in a few more games than they did last year.
This is, of course, assuming that the starting quarterback situation is what it is. Theoretically, if all goes according to plan, it does not matter who the backup is.
Knowshon Moreno looks improved and Willis McGahee seems to have a lot left in the tank. So, why does the running game still fail to impress in the preseason?
It could be because there is such a strong focus on the quarterback position in Denver, but it’s not like 20- and 30-yard runs are being ignored by pundits in favor of focusing on the passing game.
The truth is that the passing game offers the only big-play threat on the Denver offense and that needs to change. In a division where ball control is key, the ability to not only chew up the clock, but also strike quickly with the run is imperative.
The Broncos desperately need their first offensive unit to open up a hole and run capably through it for a big gain.
Both David Anderson and Perrish Cox have shown promise at this position, but it comes down to their skills here to determine who makes the team.
Both Anderson and Cox are more than serviceable at their natural positions, but players like Eric Decker and Cassius Vaughn are making it easier to part with either one.
Since the art of the kickoff return is essentially a moot point for this season, the Broncos need to have the ability to turn the field on punt returns. One of these players needs to stand out here, improving the Broncos special teams as a result.
It’s already better than it was last year. However, to be truly feared it needs to be more consistent on both sides.
Robert Ayers has been underwhelming as the starter opposite of Elvis Dumervil, and sooner than later that word will get out to the league. Dumervil and Von Miller can’t both be schemed out of the game by the offense, but how much more deadly could the rush be with a decent rush on the other side as well?
If someone is able to put good pressure on the QB from the opposite side, Dennis Allen will be able to open up his playbook a lot more and disguise the whereabouts of Von Miller on the rush.
The two touchdowns that Willis McGahee scored against the Bills are very promising.
First, John Fox showed a dedication to the run that was rewarded by McGahee’s persistence to find the end zone. Second, the outlet pass to McGahee from Orton out of the backfield was impeccably timed by Mike McCoy.
Still, Quinn needed something better to cap off his two-minute drill before half, and there were some questions that remained from the Cowboys game.
Egos need to be put aside here. Orton can pass all the way down the field to get them there, but if three-straight runs are the best option to score then that is what needs to be called.
Not to mention, if Tim Tebow ends up being the sixth-best QB on the roster after Orton, Quinn, Weber, Brandon Lloyd and Britton Colquitt in terms of throwing ability, it has zero impact on his ability to find the end zone inside the 20s. If Orton stalls in the red zone, Tebow had better find his way onto the field—or anyone who can convert for that matter.
Nobody is feeling bad for the Broncos' injury problems on the interior defensive line. In fact, Felix Jones and Fred Jackson may have been pretty happy to see it.
The Broncos have not yet been gashed like they were during last preseason, but that doesn’t mean that the work is done. Ty Warren figured to be a big part of the solution, but now the Broncos need to look elsewhere.
The answer may be currently on their roster, but the likelihood of that seems low. Elway, Xanders and Fox need to keep a keen eye on the waiver wire for help, while Dennis Allen and his staff continue to cultivate the players they have.