The Broncos are without the likes of Champ Bailey, Elvis Dumervil, Brandon Lloyd and Knowshon Moreno. This is going to test the game planning of John Fox and his collection of coaches and coordinators.
Luckily they are not facing a juggernaut in the Bengals, but they proved that if given the opportunity they are more than capable of stealing a game.
Willis McGahee has already made the offensive line, and the running game in general, look better today. The Broncos are showing a stronger commitment to running due to the success they are finding.
However, just because Moreno is not in the lineup today does not mean that screens and swing passes should not be a part of the game plan. McGahee can be very effective and help to keep the Broncos offense more diverse.
This is a tougher proposition without Dumervil and Bailey in the lineup. When Bailey is on the outside it is easier to rely on him to shut down the passing game with man coverage.
Still, Dalton and the Cincy offense needs to see a lot of pressure and prove that they can do more than run. A hurried rookie quarterback is sure to help a defense find ways to be opportunistic and create turnovers.
The Broncos are racked with injury and missing the sure hands of Brandon Lloyd. Matthew Willis can be a more-than-adequate replacement if he is able to utilize his best asset: speed.
Mike McCoy needs to call plays that will guarantee single coverage for Willis, let him get behind the defense and then let Orton cut loose without too much worry.
The same idea should be used in the red zone if McCoy decides to call a pass. Orton gets locked up with too many reads and eventually has to throw it away. Plays should be quick to develop in the red zone to help Orton find success.
Dennis Allen needs to try and throw as many looks at Andy Dalton as he can in an effort to keep him off balance and guessing. A great way to do that might be to bring pressure from less likely places.
Dawkins, Moore, Goodman and Vaughn should all be fair game for bringing heat on Dalton. The Broncos need to be sure, however, that Woodyard and Miller are ready to cover in case Dalton has the ability to get the ball off to a check down.