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Week 9 GDT - Broncos @ Falcons

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DEN (3-4) @ ATL (3-5)

Where:  Mercedes-Benz Stadium, ATL

When:   Sunday, November 8th, 1 PM ET

Broadcast: CBS (Greg Gumbel, Rich Gannon)

Odds:  ATL -4, O/U 50

 

DVOA:

DEN:    Overall 25th - 30th Offense, 7th Defense, 26th ST

ATL:     Overall 23rd - 23rd Offense, 22nd Defense, 18th ST

 

Have to admit - by 24-3, I didn't think I'd be doing the GD thread this week.   It's fitting that we now play ATL given the improbable W.

 

Keys to the game on O:

Lock decision-making and better accuracy vs. the ATL pass D (?shoulder?) - this is where they are vulnerable.   Lock's decision-making and his placement on intermediate-deep balls needs to keep improving.  When the easy throw is there until 3rd down, take it - that's Fant and the underneath stuff (on 3rd, throwing beyond the sticks is usually the right idea).   Jeudy keeps getting open - Lock hitting him then opens up the D for both the run and elsewhere.  The accuracy on deep balls has been an issue - but as long it doesn't improve, it also raises the Q if the shoulder is still an issue (remember, most QB's can play through a labrum injury - but it gets worse with time).   If Lock's still having issues here, we won't know if it's physical, or lack of skill progression, but if it keeps improving, it's hard to believe the shoulder's still a problem, so we hope to see progress here.

Does Shurmur go up-tempo? - it's hard to know if this was the key, but I'm a HUGE proponent of using spread formations and pressing the pace to get the D on its heels.   Running from spread formation is an underused weapon - teams that give away their play make it easier for D's to counter.    I have no problem with 12 formation ball, either - but spread 'em out, and let either Fant / Albert O match up wide.   Just don't be predictable.

DEN run game vs. ATL's improving run D - ATL's D ranking is VERY misleading - they were a bottom 3 D the first 4 weeks.   They've really improved on the DL and run D side.  Given how strong our run game has been, this is going to be really interesting to watch.

Cutting down on the mistakes/penalties - it got lost in the comeback W, but a huge part of the 24-3 deficit was mistakes/penalties - more holds/false starts in the 1H.  Can't do that again and expect to come back.

 

On the DST side.....

Containing Julio Jones - with Calvin Ridley out, Julio becomes their alpha.   Russell Gage isn't nearly as much of a problem.   One thing to watch - Hayden Hurst becomes more of a target, and with our TE / RB D still pretty suspect, that could be plan B.

DEN's interior DL vs ATL's struggling OL - sounds like Shelby Harris is out - which with Purcell's season-ending injury, REALLY hurts.   ATL's run game hasn't been great, and their OL is still having issues - but we can be exposed on interior run D (and interior pass rush).    This is a key battle area.

Getting to Matt Ryan - this is where Malik Reed's emergence really helps.  It puts Chubb into the Robin role, where he's much better suited.    You get pressure in Matt Ryan's face, he's not the run threat that we've had to face as we did with Herbert, or Mahomes (duh).  

ST matchup - flip the field, make it harder for either O to score quickly.   The O/U of 50 is ridiculously inflated, barring short-field TO's.   


On the intangible side....

DEN on an early game out east - we know the bugaboo from past years.   Will playing on the road without many fans help reverse this?  

Game management - Fangio has struggled all season long here.   Fantastic DC, team-prep....but it's been our Achilles.   Of course, we get to face the worst team (although LAC is trying to wrest that title away LOL) in blowing late leads.   3L's with 98+ percent win probability this season, LOL.


Given how badly ATL manages the game, I'll take DEN +4 on the odds side - and I can't help but think this is a Lock-Jeudy-Fant type game to really show out.   I'll go Den 24-21, but would caution those who simply look at ATL's record, and their late game losses, to underestimate them - since Dan Quinn's been fired, they are playing a LOT better.   Should be a good litmus test of Lock's progress (if the shoulder is OK, of course - won't really know until we see how he holds up RoS and be OK in offseason, so this is a good test).

Edited by Broncofan

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With Purcell and Harris on the DL out and no Bouye advantage swings back to ATL O.   Pass rush better get home.   Damn.  

Edited by Broncofan

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Hopefully we get to see Agim this week... wonder what the hold up has been getting him some looks. 

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November is a very winnable schedule if we can win this game and own the month of November it's gonna get interesting especially if Von returns.

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9 minutes ago, YaddaHolla said:

Are they going to let Lindsay lose or what 

I just don't see it happening our run blocking is suspect it seems like the only game they imposed their will was the Jets.

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That Sutton loss is so much bigger than it looks. Like of course this offense has plenty of weapons but he's the kinda wr that takes over games. It would be fun to see him instilling confidence in Lock so these early starts are less prevalent.

I'm waiting for Fant to just break out and dominate every week lol he was trending there the end of last season. This year he seems to go missing for large parts of games .

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I always hear people saying how immature Lock is and that may be true yes he's done nothing yet. I see it as a team issue though. Jeudy is talking trash on twitter how he's gonna go for 300 this week lol.

 

Is it a homecoming or something??? I'm just not a fan of trash talk when you're the 30th ranked offense and the key component why this team is underachieving that's across the board.

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4 minutes ago, thebestever6 said:

I always hear people saying how immature Lock is and that may be true yes he's done nothing yet. I see it as a team issue though. Jeudy is talking trash on twitter how he's gonna go for 300 this week lol.

 

Is it a homecoming or something??? I'm just not a fan of trash talk when you're the 30th ranked offense and the key component why this team is underachieving that's across the board.

Nope. He was talking about his Alabama teammate Devonta Smith, as Smith was going off last Saturday. 

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2 hours ago, BroncoBruin said:

Nope. He was talking about his Alabama teammate Devonta Smith, as Smith was going off last Saturday. 

Oh okay I miss read it then lol I was like dang that's cocky.

I'm very surprised with Albert O though shocked more than anything probably more so than Alexander Johnson. Just baffles me that you can feature a guy the final drive to drawl the pi on offense when you have all these weapons, so he's good enough for that but wasn't good enough to suit up the first 6 weeks it makes little sense.

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3 hours ago, thebestever6 said:

That Sutton loss is so much bigger than it looks. Like of course this offense has plenty of weapons but he's the kinda wr that takes over games. It would be fun to see him instilling confidence in Lock so these early starts are less prevalent.

I'm waiting for Fant to just break out and dominate every week lol he was trending there the end of last season. This year he seems to go missing for large parts of games .

I miss Sutton too because I thought this season was going to be his national coming out party. Overall for Lock's development though, it might even help that he's not out there bailing out bad decisions and throws. Hopefully this season Lock is able to become more consistent in his decision making, fundamentals, and accuracy/precision. Right now, our offense ranks 31st in the nfl in achieving first downs. We need to get in a rhythm and maybe then some misdirection/creative play calling can happen, but that starts with Lock understanding we need to win each down and that doesn't mean big play each time. A completion for 4 yards on first down is a win. Getting into a 3rd and short (3 yards or less) is a win. Make the smart play and take shots when its advantageous. 

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1 hour ago, grizmo78 said:

I miss Sutton too because I thought this season was going to be his national coming out party. Overall for Lock's development though, it might even help that he's not out there bailing out bad decisions and throws. Hopefully this season Lock is able to become more consistent in his decision making, fundamentals, and accuracy/precision. Right now, our offense ranks 31st in the nfl in achieving first downs. We need to get in a rhythm and maybe then some misdirection/creative play calling can happen, but that starts with Lock understanding we need to win each down and that doesn't mean big play each time. A completion for 4 yards on first down is a win. Getting into a 3rd and short (3 yards or less) is a win. Make the smart play and take shots when its advantageous. 

You're probably right with the Lock decision making guess it's a double edged sword because in one hand Lock can't force it but on the other Completions to Sutton could of gotten Lock confidence and into rhythm.

I thought last year was his coming out party I debated someone at work he was a top 10 wr all off-season.

He's out only player where I genuinely feel confident he's gonna come up with an important catch

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Full list of starters out:

Shelby Harris, Jurrell Casey, Mike Purcell, Von Miller, AJ Bouye

JuWan James, Graham Glasgow, Courtland Sutton

So that's out entire starting DL, and a total of 36% of our starters.

I know everyone gets injuries, this season in particular, but it's a credit to this coaching staff that we are competing nearly every week.

 

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1 hour ago, lomaxgrUK said:

Full list of starters out:

Shelby Harris, Jurrell Casey, Mike Purcell, Von Miller, AJ Bouye

JuWan James, Graham Glasgow, Courtland Sutton

So that's out entire starting DL, and a total of 36% of our starters.

I know everyone gets injuries, this season in particular, but it's a credit to this coaching staff that we are competing nearly every week.

 

Testament to Elway too how well he rebounded drafting

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