Hope springs eternal this time of the year. It’s a new beginning in the second season, which we call the playoffs. With the exception of the Cardinals due to a lack of quarterback, most NFL participating playoff teams such as the Broncos have a chance to go to the Super Bowl.
Broncomaniacs are optimistic about their team’s chances. Broncos defensive tackle Terrance Knighton guaranteed a Super Bowl championship for the Broncos. One would expect positivity from the Broncos and their fans.
As a writer with no rooting interest, I can think logically rather than react on emotion. I have reservations about the Broncos going to the Super Bowl this year. I don’t believe they are playing in one this year. They are going to lose to the winner of the Ravens/Patriots matchup next week.
Here’s my issue with the Broncos: Peyton Manning. Who knows how he is going to play? He struggled to throw the football for a month, and he appeared like he was in pain when he was at the games. There have been suggestions that he is playing hurt, which is why Broncos running back C.J. Anderson has had so much workload.
There’s the unknown factor of what will the Broncos quarterback do. Everyone says he will be fine. That’s the optimism in them. No one knows what he is going to do until he is out there Sunday afternoon.
Going up against Colts quarterback Andrew Luck, Manning has to wing the ball. Everyone knows Luck will. So does the Broncos quarterback.
If Manning has a good passing game, not only will the Broncos win, but they may go further. I have my doubts, though. It’s hard to believe a quarterback can turn it all around all of a sudden on one week rest. It’s hard to fathom he can all of sudden get it done. He is not a 25-year old quarterback anymore.
If the future Hall of Fame quarterback is a sure thing, it would be easy to be optimistic.
The best scenario out of Sunday’s game is Manning still has it. The Broncos can beat the Colts with good defense and heavy dose of Anderson, but it would serve them well if their quarterback has a MVP performance. If he does, maybe the Broncos can feel good about themselves heading to next week.
It’s going to take so much to get by against the Colts. They may not play defense, but they will light the scoreboard. It will be a good test to find out how tough the Broncos defense is.
Next week will be difficult if the Broncos advance. Going to Foxborough will not be an easy task for them. Manning has historically struggled over there, and Patriots quarterback Tom Brady always does well against the Broncos at Gillette Stadium. Considering how much pain the Broncos quarterback is in, who knows how much of an effect the cold weather could have on his body?
It’s hard to believe the Broncos can somehow win at Foxborough when they have showed they can’t in recent years. The place has been house of horrors for them. That’s why the Broncos and their fans will watch the Ravens’ matchup against the Patriots Saturday with interest. They hope the Ravens win, so that the Broncos can get a home game next week rather than travel to the East Coast.
Be careful what you wish for. You may just get it.
Playing the Ravens does not aid the Broncos’ chances of playing in the Super Bowl. Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco has had a good resume in January throughout his career, and he ‘s better than people give credit for. The Ravens are well-coached, and bet on Ravens coach John Harbaugh to have them ready if they come to Denver. They already proved they can win a playoff game at Sports Authority Field couple of years ago.
With an injured Manning, it’s clear the Broncos are vulnerable. It wouldn’t be surprising if they lose Sunday. They look like a team that is trending downward after not finishing the regular season strong.
Every team has a clean slate now that the playoffs started. The problem is win or go home.
The Broncos are hoping they can survive and advance for the next two weeks to get to the big game at Glendale, Arizona.
I have my doubts.
Follow or Contact Leslie Monteiro: @LightRodWriter