2016 Broncos Season, Week 14
The Broncos lost again, and time is getting short to get it turned around.
Week 14: Tennessee Titans 13, Broncos 10
Season Record: 8-5 (4-2 Home)
Key Play: In the fourth quarter, trailing 13-10 with the Broncos driving, Trevor Siemian connected with AJ Derby for a first down, but Derby fumbled the ball, ending the Broncos' come back.
Recap: The Broncos always knew they'd put themselves in a tough position. The final four weeks of the season will determine whether they make the playoff field, and the team has a brutal stretch. The game with the Titans, while not easy, should have been the most winnable game. With the Chiefs beating the Raiders on Thursday night, the Broncos could have pulled back to within a game of first place. Instead, the team struggled offensively and gave up just enough on defense — though they were stellar in the second half — to find themselves on the losing end. Now they face the Patriots, Chiefs and Raiders to close the season, and have to win at least two of three to have a shot at the sixth seed. That's a tall order. It's possible, and I still think they make the field, but the odds of repeating feel pretty small.
* Trevor Siemian. Coming in hobbled with a foot injury, Siemian threw for 334 yards and a touchdown on 51 attempts. It's his second straight 300 yard game, made all the more impressive by the lack of running game and blocking around him.
* Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders. The receivers are the best skill players on the team, and it showed. Thomas caught 10 for 126 yards, while Sanders caught 11 for 100 yards and a touchdown.
* Denver's Defense. Aside from a shaky first quarter, the defense was strong. They only allowed Marcus Mariota to complete six passes. Six! The run defense is lacking, but the Broncos should have been able to win.
* Offensive Line: We are 30th out of 32 teams in offensive line spending and it shows. We don't open holes in the running game, and we don't protect well. That's a problem moving forward against top tier teams.
* Running Game. Devontae Booker isn't the answer. He seems to be getting worse every game. Justin Forsett wasn't much better. We had 16 yards rushing Sunday. That won't cut it.
* Run Defense. The word is out, you beat the Broncos' defense by running and chewing up the clock. That's working. The defense has to shore up that weakness.