The Denver Broncos hadn’t won a game for more than a month—an inspired win against the San Diego Chargers on the road October 19. The Broncos were 6-0 and the toast of the NFL. Then, the floor fell out. The team lost four consecutive games and was written off. But last night, the Broncos finally stopped the bleeding, giving fans something to be thankful for by dominating the New York Giants 26-6. Denver was led by a stifling defense that kept New York’s quarterback, Eli Manning, looking for answers (extended box score via NFL.com).
Wide receiver Brandon Marshall had six catches for nearly 90 yards, including two one-handed grabs that proved just how good the guy is. Broncos quarterback Kyle Orton played well on a recovering strained ankle, going 18-28 for 245 yards and a touchdown. The Giants played a “pitiful performance” and were “startlingly bad” and “hideous,” writes New York Daily News. Ouch.
Pro Football Talk says the Broncos’ dismantling of the Giants puts Denver in a good spot in the crowded AFC playoff picture, noting the Broncos have three games left, including face-offs with the Kansas City Chiefs and the Oakland Raiders.
But the picture wasn’t all rosy last night. At one point in the second quarter, the NFL Network inadvertently broadcast Broncos head coach Josh McDaniels using explicit language to lambast his offense on the sidelines after a particularly bad stretch of plays (video below). The NFL Network quickly apologized. Fox Sports thinks the outburst is typical of the team’s emotion, which might just be enough to carry them to the playoffs.