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GDT: Denver Broncos @ Arizona Cardinals

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Rosen has looked AWFUL.  He’s a rookie and will grow, but damn, he doesn’t have a clue what is going on pre snap or post snap, which was supposed to be one of his biggest strengths.

This offense sucks as well, but he hasn’t even shown a flash tonight. 

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13 minutes ago, germ-x said:

Rosen has looked AWFUL.  He’s a rookie and will grow, but damn, he doesn’t have a clue what is going on pre snap or post snap, which was supposed to be one of his biggest strengths.

This offense sucks as well, but he hasn’t even shown a flash tonight. 

He's made 3 huge mistakes, and only paid for it 1x - the Harris pick-6, Fitz was wide open in the flat.  The WR gave up on the play, why it looks worse, but he should have read Fitz there.  The first pick-6, you just tip your cap to Wolfe for the tip.  But, the 2 throws to Chad Williams in 1H (one on 3rd and 4 to the EZ, why do that?) and just now (which should have been picked), those are the classic rookie mistakes, and while the tip you can't control, you can certainly say he should have had at least 1 of the other 2 throws picked.   

As polished as Rosen was heading into 2018 out of all the rookies - rookie struggles are inevitable.  Like I said pre-game, I figured we'd see something like this with how bad their OL is, how good our pass rush is, and the fact it's only his 3rd game  - just not quick pick-6 x 2 lol.   If you watch the game's replays, though, you'll see 4-5 throws already where he puts it on time and the only spot he can (1 of them dropped by Kirk, the others complete).   You will see the mistakes for sure and they are killers, but the skills (not just physical, either) are there.  The movement around the pocket is also better than advertised, that TD drive was extended by decent pocket awareness.  He's never going to be a big mover, but if he can extend plays and avoid big hits, that's a huge plus to extend his career.

Another huge issue is that for some reason, the ARI plays are coming in late - look at the clock, and it's 20 or fewer secs left when the play comes in (not 30+).   That's leaving almost no time for Rosen to make any additional reads/adjustments.  He's struggled for sure, but the bigger problem is McCoy's scheme is both vanilla, and late in getting plays out.  Add an OL that is even worse than ours in pass pro (yes that's possible) and unlike ours, can't run block, and it's ugly.

The blessing for ARI is that their GM Keim has been having excellent drafts (and probably why they tolerated the very bad DUI look this past offseason) , with few misses early on with Day 1-2 (Nkdemiche might be his biggest so far, and he's not a complete lost cause) - and they have a lot of cap space.   Like us, their best young players are locked up (other than Fitz, it's DJ, Kirk & RSJ).  Like us, they need better play from at least 3 OL positions.   But they have real hope.  It's just going to be ugly, really ugly this year.   This is what we saw with Goff and even Wentz in year 1.   They absolutely need to get rid of Mike McCoy though - the sooner they get a real O scheme, the better for their long-term health.

Edited by Broncofan

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13 minutes ago, Broncofan said:

He's made 3 huge mistakes, and only paid for it 1x - the Harris pick-6, Fitz was wide open in the flat.  The WR gave up on the play, why it looks worse, but he should have read Fitz there.  The first pick-6, you just tip your cap to Wolfe for the tip.  But, the 2 throws to Chad Williams in 1H (one on 3rd and 4 to the EZ, why do that?) and just now (which should have been picked), those are the classic rookie mistakes, and while the tip you can't control, you can certainly say he should have had at least 1 of the other 2 throws picked.   

As polished as Rosen was heading into 2018 out of all the rookies - rookie struggles are inevitable.  Like I said pre-game, I figured we'd see something like this with how bad their OL is, how good our pass rush is, and the fact it's only his 3rd game  - just not quick pick-6 x 2 lol.   If you watch the game's replays, though, you'll see 4-5 throws already where he puts it on time and the only spot he can (1 of them dropped by Kirk, the others complete).   You will see the mistakes for sure and they are killers, but the skills (not just physical, either) are there.  The movement around the pocket is also better than advertised, that TD drive was extended by decent pocket awareness.  He's never going to be a big mover, but if he can extend plays and avoid big hits, that's a huge plus to extend his career.

Another huge issue is that for some reason, the ARI plays are coming in late - look at the clock, and it's 20 or fewer secs left when the play comes in (not 30+).   That's leaving almost no time for Rosen to make any additional reads/adjustments.  He's struggled for sure, but the bigger problem is McCoy's scheme is both vanilla, and late in getting plays out.  Add an OL that is even worse than ours in pass pro (yes that's possible) and unlike ours, can't run block, and it's ugly.

The blessing for ARI is that their GM Keim has been having excellent drafts (and probably why they tolerated the very bad DUI look this past offseason) , with few misses early on with Day 1-2 (Nkdemiche might be his biggest so far, and he's not a complete lost cause) - and they have a lot of cap space.   Like us, their best young players are locked up (other than Fitz, it's DJ, Kirk & RSJ).  Like us, they need better play from at least 3 OL positions.   But they have real hope.  It's just going to be ugly, really ugly this year.   This is what we saw with Goff and even Wentz in year 1.   They absolutely need to get rid of Mike McCoy though - the sooner they get a real O scheme, the better for their long-term health.

For someone that’s been drafting so well, that team is awful on every level.

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29 minutes ago, germ-x said:

For someone that’s been drafting so well, that team is awful on every level.

That's what happens though when you play win-now for 4-5 years, and then eventually need to turn over.   They were contenders at 10-6, 11-5 and 13-3 and hanging in with Arians at the helm with Keim as GM in 2013-15.  Then the last 2 years as they've gotten older and their best players became expensive, they didn't make the commitment to go full rebuild...until now.   Their 2nd contract guys like Honey Badger were just not good anymore in 2017.   They were good enough to be .500 teams, and had pieces, but gradually, needed to embrace a full rebuild.   But instead, they hung on for 2 .500-ish seasons, and now realized it's time to go full rebuild.

The one weakness Keim's had is an inability to develop OL (the one big hole in his drafts) - Humphries has been a big miss, Cooper was bad luck (broke his leg and wasn't ever the same, total beast when he was drafted).   And he's probably hung on 1 year too many in win-now mode.   But he embraced it fully now.  And his 2017-2018 drafts do look very strong (but we obv. won't see the full effect until next year).   

So he's had a track record of success (2014-15 Exec of the year on 2 straight years), who probably held on a year too late, and can't really develop an OL.  Wonder who that sounds like lol.

Put another way, if we didn't try to be win-now this year, we'd have a great CB, a good S, an elite EDGE, and some really young guys learning on D.   A bad OL outside of 2-3 guys, and some young skill guys on O.   That's exactly what ARI has - except they didn't bother to try and go win-now, so they have Chandler Jones & Patrick Peterson on D, and a bunch of young guys, and outside of Fitz and stopgap OL (because someone has to play OL), are going super-young on O.  The difference is that ARI isn't as much cap hell as we are - they do need to upgrade 3 OL spots in a big way (G Justin Pugh and C AJ Cole are the only 2 pieces you want to see starting).   But they have their 2nd WR (and WROTF), QB and C in their rookie year, and their top ILB/S's in year 2.  So it's a growing pains year.   

But the other benefit of this tank approach - if they finish with 1.1 or 1.2, they get a generational talent in Nick Bosa or Ed Oliver, because they don't need to worry about QB.  And then can get a T/G in Rds 2-3, where the draft is strong.  And boom, major upgrade.  They will need another full year beyond 2018 to right the ship - but as bad as it is now, this is the right step.  It's the same direction we saw CLE taking with Sashi Brown (except they got the generational D talent first in Garrett), and then the QB/CB now.     Sashi Brown was questioned during the 3-year rebuild - sure doesn't look so questionable now.   Hopefully we and ARI won't take 3 years, but 2 is a minimum when you are as bad as we both are, and 3 isn't that surprising (we're just in year 1 for ARI...and hopefully for us).

Edited by Broncofan

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Outside of recovering a fumble has DeMarcus Walker done anything?

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The one other big benefit for us long-term - it's good to see Von back up the talk with elite play.  If anyone thought he was playing without desire or heart, I think we should just realize he's so good, teams just take him out with double-triple teams, or plays away from him, and then the others have to come to play - and they haven't.  Tonight, Von's been the same guy - just the OL is so bad, double teams don't matter.   Tip my cap.

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As much as I've piled on the T's for their complete lack of pass blocking abilities, that sack is going to count on Bolles, but that was COMPLETELY on Keenum.  Holding on the ball way too long.  SMH Keenum.  ZERO improvement.

Edited by Broncofan

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How fitting the guy y’all upset at Elway choosing over Rosen injures Rosen...

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7 minutes ago, Counselor said:

How fitting the guy y’all upset at Elway choosing over Rosen injures Rosen...

Maybe he gets it together but Rosen looks awful.  I realize there’s a bad line and bad coaching but that was ugly

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7 minutes ago, Counselor said:

How fitting the guy y’all upset at Elway choosing over Rosen injures Rosen...

I love Chubb. If we get a qb like Finley whos pro ready this team would go a long way to having a nice nucleus .

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OK, with the game in hand, a few post-game thoughts....since it's a W, we'll start with the bad, then the good...

The Bad

1. Keenum - I know, I know, we won 45-10 - so how can we say Keenum was bad?  Well, watching the game, it's pretty easy - he was again late on reads, and that led to throwaways and the sacks.  And the INT was all him.    He made 3-4 really good throws and 2x converted 3rd down - but really, this is the same Keenum we've seen.  We just didn't need him at all.

2. False sense of hope - this will no doubt give the press and FO the ammunition to say we have hope.  And man, it's a total mirage.   ARI's bad OL, and the early pick-6's, put us in the perfect storm to win big.   We thought we were are 7-9/8-8 team - we see what happens when we meet a bottom-2 team, and win the TO battle that thoroughly.

3.  Injuries - losing Derek Wolfe is scary for our DL that hasn't been able to stop the run (more on that in a minute).   Losing Desean Hamilton to a knee injury was scary, praying it's not an ACL, that would be a killer (especially since it was such a fluke and unnecessary play).

 

The Good

1.  Von & the pass rush came to play - not much to say, the ARI OL was 29th in DVOA, and even worse than our OL in pass pro - and our elite EDGE play showed up and took advantage.   It was good to see Barrett/Chubb contribute as well, even if it was in garbage time, can't really take that away from them, only can do what they can with the PT they're given (just be careful in projecting same performance expectations against much better OL's, and different gamescript).

2.  The run game was awesome - this was a perfect usage of Lindsay IMO - only 12+ carries, and some pass work, let him eat in space.   Freeman still is rounding into game-speed adjustment, but we can't play Lindsay so much we wear him down, so great thunder-lightning combo.

3.  Sanders - what can we say, he was nails. DT and Sutton made big plays too, but Sanders is just playing at a top level.  Nice to see him bounce back after the costly penalty (which IMO wasn't a game-loser, given LAR didn't play for the TD last drive, and game flow would have changed, but still a bad look).

4.  Our run D came to play (or did the ARI OL suck that hard?) - ARI's OL is 31st in DVOA in run blocking - so it might have been that they were just that bad.  But again, we can only ask for the D to face the guys, and win. And win they did.  Now, with Wolfe injured, and a much better run OL coming with KC, no expectations the problems are fixed, but can only concede they were much improved - time will tell if it's just how bad ARI was, or if we've fixed the issues.

5. Our ST's dominated theirs - again, ARI is a bottom 3 ST unit, and man it showed with each KO.  But then again, we aren't bottom-5 anymore either.  It was nice to see us win the field position game each KO.   It's funny when the shoe's on the other foot, we haven't been winning ST's for a long time.  KC & Toub are an elite unit, so this will prove a far better test next week, but it was good to see real tangible progress (even if it was a patsy opponent).

6.   Very creative play calling by Musgrave - for all the heat Musgrave took in getting away from the run game vs. KC (and very much deserved), and the vanilla play calling @ NYJ, we have to recognize that Musgrave dialed some very nice plays early - the Sanders TD throw, the rollout option play for Keenum, using power run with Freeman and off-tackle with Lindsay in space, the isolations on Sutton in the RZ - all what we'd want to see.   Full tip of the cap, it was not just successful, but creative.

I thought it was going to be a close game that either team could win - didn't foresee the 3 TD's (2 pick-6's and 1 short-field TD drive) the D gift-wrapped us, and then gameflow worked in our favor.   Overall, though, we're still a bad team - we're just not a bottom-5 team, and we've done the job against 2 bottom-5 teams (OAK & ARI) and a bottom-10 team (SEA) with HFA and mismatches that worked in our favor (despite Keenum's awful play). 

Fortunately, for our long-term we need to recognize we need the full commitment to rebuild.   @KC next week will most likely hammer that home.   But as we're not getting a top 5 pick, I'll accept that (for now, at least lol), and then move on to @KC's game (and hey, other benefit - at least we know who we can bug to start next week's GD thread, @iLikeDefense gets to start it for another week lol).

 

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23 minutes ago, Counselor said:

How fitting the guy y’all upset at Elway choosing over Rosen injures Rosen...

 

15 minutes ago, broncofan48 said:

Maybe he gets it together but Rosen looks awful.  I realize there’s a bad line and bad coaching but that was ugly

It's his rookie year, and ARI was outmatched on OL and OC-scheme wise.  Pretty much every rookie QB has these games, esp. on bad teams...why GM's like Elway don't want to sacrifice a year to let them learn.  Patience b4 calling the rookie QB awful overall in week 4 of his rookie year (but yeah, tonight was ugggly). 

Edited by Broncofan

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5 minutes ago, Broncofan said:

 

It's his rookie year, and ARI was outmatched on OL and OC-scheme wise.  Pretty much every rookie QB has these games, esp. on bad teams...why GM's like Elway don't want to sacrifice a year to let them learn.  Patience b4 calling the rookie QB awful overall in week 4 of his rookie year (but yeah, tonight was ugggly). 

If this year keeps up Rosen is gonna be a shell. Like David Carr.  

I saw nothing that impressed me about Rosen. 

I could be wrong but Elway wanted Darnold or nothing and to me he’s looking 100% right.

 

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3 hours ago, Broncofan said:

So the trick to DEN O success is to not let Case actually have to get us the points.   So far, so good.

Losing Stewart on D will hurt our pass D and 2nd level run support.  Hopefully he's OK.

Didn't see it but if it's serious, Stewart's njury is going to be a blessing in disguise for the team. Cravens needs to get on the field as much as possible. Also, Stewart is totally washed up. 

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