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Raiders News

Defensive inconsistency hurting the Raiders when it comes to interceptions. posted by Raiders News

An interception is more than just a take away or a change of possession. It’s a huge momentum changer and one pic can bring a team from being out of the game to a roaring comeback.

However, the 0-8 Raiders don’t know much about momentum changes as they rank dead last in the league in defensive interceptions with only 3 so far on the season and 23 over the past 3 years.

Sure, the game has changed considerably. With greater concerns for player safety, hard nosed defense isn’t what it used to be. The NFL is becoming more and more a flag football league where completions and record high passing games the norm, but that shouldn’t stop a team from having an aggressive defensive mindset.

The greatest reason why the Raiders rank last in INTs is the lack of consistency in the secondary. The Raiders have had a different set of starting cornerbacks in each of the past three seasons.

That lack of continuity causes a defense to play more cautious, not knowing the ebb and flow of their teammates so they can read off each other and know when one is going for the receiver and one is free to try and snatch the ball out of the air from the receiver without worry that he’ll miss and give up 6 points.

So how does a team build that mindset without getting burned on each and every play? Practice. Practicing a more aggressive, interception friendly defense during practice is the only way the Raiders will ever climb out of the bottom of the Interceptions ranking. Because game time is too late for on the field experiments, especially with All-Pro Peyton Manning and the Broncos coming to town on Sunday.

Continue reading "Defensive inconsistency hurting the ..."


Broncos Fan

Wes Welker Injury Update and what does it mean for the future of the Broncos star wide out? posted by Broncos Fan

It hasn’t been easy for Bronco’s star wide out Wes Welker. He started off the 2014 campaign with a concussion during a preseason contest which would have sidelined him for at least one regular season game, but to compound the issue, he was suspended an additional 4 games as he tested positive for amphetamines.

Depsite the general public ridicule that came with his drug testing results, the league reinstated Welker only two weeks later instead of serving his original 4 game suspension.

Things may have seemed to be looking up for Welker until last Sunday when he left the game with a back injury. Another snag for the All-Pro receiver to an otherwise dismal year.

Is this the end for Welker? Probably not, but it’s not too far off. He is nowhere near his Pro-Bowl numbers and his output was the lowest he had since back in 2006. His role on the team is diminishing as the Broncos are looking to the next man in who is healthy and can stay healthy.

With a quarterback like Peyton, you don’t need to be reliant on a specific receiver to generate your offense. Peyton will make an offense click with just about anybody, and the Broncos are far from just having ‘anybody’.

Demaryius Thomas is one of the best wide receivers in the league. At 26 years old, he's at the peak of his powers and has a long, bright future ahead of him. Add in the teams best Red Zone target, Julius Thomas, and it’s clear that the Broncos can produce yardage and points just fine.

In addition, the signing of Emmanuel Sanders served to drain some of the targets that might've gone Welker's way after the departure of Eric Decker. Sanders is having a great season, on pace to set personal bests in receptions and receiving yards.

Continue reading "Wes Welker Injury Update and what ..."


Broncos Fan

Can Manning Take The Broncos Back To The Superbowl? posted by Broncos Fan

The Denver Broncos looked  invincible going into Super Bowl but was sent crashing back to earth by the tight defense of the Seattle Seahawks to lose, 43-8. The debacle stole the thunder from what was a solid season for the Broncos where they went 13-3.

Any story about the Broncos starts with league MVP Peyton Manning. The five-time MVP was spectacular last year with 55 touchdown passes, a single-season record. He also registered an 8.3 ypa and 5,477 yards. But it remains to be seen how Manning will sustain his brilliance as he enters the late 30s. Now 38, Manning could be a step slower this year.

Making things difficult this year is that the team would have to face the NFC West this year after feasting on the poor NFC East defenses the previous season. He struggled mightily against the Seahawks in the Super Bowl, and now he’ll have to deal with them again as well as defensive teams like the 49ers, Cardinals, and Rams.

Aside from the schedule, the Broncos will have to deal with a declining supporting cast. They lost Wes Walker, a favorite target of Manning. Left guard Zane Beadles also left town, and it is expected that Orlando Franklin will take his spot. Chris Clark will then take over Beadles’ old position.

Fortunately, the defensive unit of the Broncos did not lose key pieces. In fact, it may have improved its secondary with the addition of Aqib Talib, one of the best corners in the league. They also signed safety T.J. Ward, and he’ll provide a lot of help in the defensive backfield.

The Broncos will still be a contender for the NFL championship. While the offense is expected to drop, Manning should still be able to find his way and carry the offense. The good news is that the defense may have even been improved.

Continue reading "Can Manning Take The Broncos Back ..."


Amari Harris

The Fix 10-12: QB Overdose posted by Amari Harris

The turning point.

Tough loss for the Dallas Cowboys last week.  And it wasn’t one of those 24 hour losses either.  It was one of those that you think about for the next few days, and depending on how things go as you get into the middle part of the schedule, one of those games you think about all year.  A “What if?”  game, if you will.  I predicted that the Cowboys would beat the Broncos because I knew they could match up and I knew they could step their game up to stiff competition.  Did I expect a 48-51 shootout?  Hecks naw, but in hindsight it should have been obvious.  I bet that the defense would step up rather than Tony Romo actually playing at a Peyton Manning-like level.   Instead Tony Romo played perfect for exactly 58 minutes of the football game.  Peyton Manning did the same, except his mistake came earlier in the game rather than in crunch time. 

It’s ironic because Peyton is also known for making those critical mistakes in the clutch, but Romo beat him to the punch last sunday.  I can imagine a scenario where the Cowboys punted the ball to the Broncos in the last couple minutes of the game and Manning actually threw the “ game losing interception” (hyperlink).  But Romo beat him to it.  The QB duel was worth the angst.  Porous defense for sure, but the QBs made the game.  And in case anyone didn’t know, Romo is an elite quarterback.  He is not a clutch quarterback, but then again neither is Peyton Manning. 

Continue reading "The Fix 10-12: QB Overdose"


Amari Harris

The Fix- 10/4 posted by Amari Harris

Friday Football Fix: A Rare Guarantee!

I apologize for not posting before the games this weekend.  I visited my mom’s house for the weekend which meant no computer and no internet and I forgot to post before leaving for the weekend.  I’ll post what I had written to prove to you all that I knew that Antonio Gates and Danny Woodhead would destroy the Dallas Cowboys, as I knew they, along with Eddie Royal, were the only real offensive threats they may not be able to handle.

Despite the sheer inability to cover those two individuals the Cowboys looked like they were well on their way to victory, after a Sean Lee interception return for a touchdown toward the end of the first half that put them up 21-10.  I think every Cowboys fan let out a collective sigh of relief, and felt that we pretty much had this one in the bag (I’ll include myself, as I ominously used the words “Victory Cigar” after that play *slap*).  They proceeded to allow 20 unanswered points, 400+ yards and 3 touchdowns from Phillip Rivers, and breakout performances by Woodhead and Gates.  Yes, it was a disappointing day.  Even with the Giants and Eagles losing once again, and the Cowboys remaining as the sole leader of the NFC division, they really could have gotten off to an encouraging start. 

Nonetheless, the past is the past, and this is a new week; a very big week indeed.  The juggernaut Denver Broncos come to town with the most unstoppable offensive machine since the Greatest Show On Turf.  The Broncos have not just beaten, but dominated every team they’ve faced this year.  They have one 14 regular season games in a row and all of them by more than a touchdown.  Suffice to say, the Cowboys will be heavy underdogs this week.  And I love it…

Continue reading "The Fix- 10/4"


Joe Anello

Free Agency 2013: Days Two and Three posted by Joe Anello

Welcome back everyone! I would have posted this last night but the lack of sleep Monday night really caught up with me. Now I’m back and ready to pick apart the transactions of days two and three of NFL free agency. Let’s get that money man!

OG Gosder Cherilus signs a 5-year, $34 million deal with Indianapolis Colts.
Additional signings: OG Donald Thomas (4 years, $14 million), LB Erik Walden (4 years, $16 million), S LaRon Landry (4 years, $24 million)

This is a group of Colt signings that I didn’t discuss in the day one recap because I was exhausted and there were too many to address. Cherilus was overpaid, but I get it. Thomas’ deal is tolerable and revamps the interior of their line. I don’t feel confident that Walden’s contract will prove to be money well spent. Still, signing Landry as well gives Chuck Pagano a play-making safety in his secondary. The Colts are spending, but not as crazily as the Dolphins.

WR Wes Welker signs a 2-year, $12 million deal with the Denver Broncos

Okay, I have a LOT to say about this deal. I took to Twitter to express my thoughts shortly after the news broke, but I felt utterly hindered by the 140-character limit. I was really upset by the news that New England only offered Welker $10 million (including incentives). He’s only been one of the hardest workers on your team for the past six seasons and this is how he gets rewarded? EFF YOU PATS.

Welker’s caught 100 balls in his entire run with the Pats and hasn’t shown signs of slowing down. So imagine my surprise when I heard the Broncos only had to pay him $12 million… for two years!  If he, in this odd-as-hell receiver market, shouldn’t get more than $6M a year, I obviously don’t know football.

Continue reading "Free Agency 2013: Days Two and Three"


Joe Anello

Free Agency 2013: Day One Recap posted by Joe Anello

NFL Free Agency started with a flurry this afternoon, with deals being announced by the minute shortly after the clock struck 4PM ET. I’m here to take a look at some of the bigger deals of the day and offer a quick take. First though, I want to cover a few of the moves made on Monday, before free agency.

(Note: I’m only going to discuss ACTUAL roster movements. While a running back visiting a crappy team *cough*ReggieBush*cough* might be newsworthy, I ain’t got time to talk about every little flight here.)

(Second note: for those of you looking for my take on the Chicago Bears’ moves, check out my earlier post here.)

 

Minnesota Vikings trade WR Percy Harvin to the Seattle Seahawks

The Vikings received first and seventh round picks in the 2013 draft and a third round pick in the 2014 draft.

The Seahawks received Harvin and signed him to a six-year, $67 million dollar deal. ($25.5 guaranteed.)

Minnesota obviously wanted to get Harvin out of their hair. Despite Harvin’s interviews to the contrary, he and head coach Leslie Frasier did NOT get along. But what player won’t love Pete Carroll? An A-HOLE, that’s who. Props to Minnesota for getting a decent bounty for Harvin, but that 25th overall pick might not be a game-breaker. Still, they’re better off. For Seattle, this deal signifies how close they think they are to a title. They’re putting all of their chips in the Harvin basket now, as they released return man Leon Washington as a result of this trade.

Continue reading "Free Agency 2013: Day One Recap"


Joe Anello

The Final Drive: 2013 Divisional Round posted by Joe Anello

The 2013 Divisional Round is completed! The best weekend in football lived up to the hype, with crazy finishes (double overtimes) and historic performances. Let’s not put off this any longer. It’s time for The Final Drive!

(12-6) Baltimore Ravens 38

(13-4) Denver Broncos 35

After the Ravens were forced to punt on their opening possession, this game got crazy… fast. Trindon Holliday took that punt return back 90 yards for the first score. A 59-yard pass to a streaking Torrey Smith (who was torching Champ Bailey deep most of the day) from Joe Flacco tied the game up. On Denver’s ensuing drive, a pass from Peyton Manning tipped off the hands of Eric Decker into the arms of Corey Graham, who boomeranged it to make the score 14-7 Ravens. Manning took the ball right back and marched his team 74 yards in 11 plays, ending with a pinpoint pass to old friend Brandon Stokley on the side of the endzone. 14-14. Were you still breathing at this point? A score from both teams in the second quarter kept the game tied at 21 going into halftime. And the drama did not subside in the start of a crazy NFL weekend.

Denver Head Coach John Fox will (and should) catch a lot of flak for not even attempting to try to get in field goal range with two timeouts and 20-plus seconds left on the clock. (As we would see later in the weekend, that’s not an impossible feat to accomplish.) Fox got extremely conservative in the offensive play-calling, leaning on the run too often when he had one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time on the field. (Though doesn’t Peyton have full authority to change those calls at the line? Hm.) Not going for a third down conversion late in the fourth allowed the Ravens to get the ball back with just enough time to make something happen. And they certainly did.

Continue reading "The Final Drive: 2013 Divisional Round"


Joe Anello

The Opening Drive: 2013 Divisional Round posted by Joe Anello

Alright everyone, it’s my favorite football weekend of the entire season! At this point we have the eight best teams left in the hunt for the Lombardi Trophy, including the two greatest QB’s of our era in the AFC and a crazy Saturday night rematch in the NFC. I have stumbled out of the gates with my picks, currently standing at 1-3 after the wild card round. I owe that to every favorite covering last week and my apparently desperate need to pick against almost all of them. This week shall be different! I hope. Let’s get to The Opening Drive of the Divisional Round! (As always, point spreads are obtained from VegasInsider.com.)

 

(11-6) Baltimore Ravens at

(13-3) Denver Broncos

4:30 PM ET, CBS

This is the first of two AFC rematches that were completely one-sided in the first go-rounds. The Broncos slapped around the Ravens 34-17 in week 15, part of their 11-game winning streak to end the regular season and claim the one seed. In that game, Peyton Manning had very pedestrian numbers, but was bolstered by ground game that featured 45 carries, the most of any Manning team in his career. Their 163 yards pounded a then-short-staffed Raven defense. This game will be different, in that Baltimore is much healthier now. Ray Lewis is back, as is linebacker Danel Ellerbee. Still, the Raven corners are average at best, so they’re not going to be able to contain Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker on the outside.

Continue reading "The Opening Drive: 2013 Divisional Round"


Joe Anello

The Final Drive: Week 17, 2012 posted by Joe Anello

Oh man. The drama from week 17 in the NFL was palpable! I don’t have time to lather you up with a witty intro, so let’s get right into The Final Drive!

(10-6) Cincinnati Bengals 23

(10-6) Baltimore Ravens 17

Well the Ravens probably didn’t want to win this game. Consequently, they looked a tad disinterested. Not a lot to talk about here though. Moving on!

(6-10) Tennessee Titans 38

(2-14) Jacksonville Jaguars 20

This game had no playoff implications whatsoever, but I wanted to touch on the fact that the Titans scored FOUR touchdowns in a span of five minutes without touching the ball on offense. Darius Reynaud ran back two punts for scores while Zach Brown pick-sixed Chad Henne twice. That’s impressive as hell. But it might not be enough to save Mike Munchak’s job.

(11-5) Indianapolis Colts 28

(12-4) Houston Texans 16

Anyone else really interested in seeing how Houston performs in the playoffs? They went from almost the de facto number one seed with a bye all the way down to the three spot with what should be a tough game against the Bengals coming in round one. For the Colts, they might be emotionally peaking at the right time. It’s time for Luck to show his stuff in the postseason.

(9-7) New York Giants 42

(4-12) Philadelphia Eagles 7

It was a mighty effort against a crappy opponent, but the Giants’ losing their prior two games was too much to overcome. They’re 9-7 once again, but this season they have nothing to show for it. Maybe next year Eli. And I’ll likely be acknowledging Andy Reid’s final season/career in Philly tomorrow, when I’m writing about his dismissal. EEP!

Continue reading "The Final Drive: Week 17, 2012"

Denver Broncos News

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Broncos promote safety Josh Bush to active roster (The Associated Press)

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) -- The Denver Broncos have promoted safety Josh Bush to their 53-man roster and replaced him on the practice squad with guard Jon Halapio. [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports


Knighton issues Super Bowl prediction for Broncos (Yahoo Sports)

[read full article]

From Yahoo Sports


Shutdown Corner NFL Power Rankings: Which 11-5 team will get left out? (Shutdown Corner)

Philadelphia Eagles fans, who know plenty about hardship, should start bracing themselves now. The Eagles are probably going 11-5, and they're probably staying at home for the postseason despite that record. The 1985 Denver Broncos and 2008 New England Patriots are the only teams that have missed the playoffs with 11 wins since the NFL went to the 16-game schedule in 1978. But Sunday's loss to the Dallas Cowboys puts the Eagles in a bad place. The Eagles' 5-5 conference record is a problem when it comes to tiebreakers. And the Packers and Lions are each favored to get their 11th win this weekend. The Cardinals already have 11. The Seahawks need to win just one of their last two to get to 11 wins, and they'll be heavily favored in both remaining games. The Eagles might need the Cowboys to drop one of their last two games to get into the playoffs. And then we can probably just make this same sad tale about whichever 11-win NFC team gets left home because it seems like a good bet that it'll happen to someone. [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports

Trevathan's season over after latest knee injury (Yahoo Sports)

[read full article]

From Yahoo Sports


Another year, another division title for Pats and Colts (NFL in 90) (Shutdown Corner)

If it's December, the New England Patriots and Indianapolis Colts must be clinching another division title. Indeed, no two teams have dominated their competition quite like the Pats and Colts since the NFL moved to eight four-team divisions in 2002. The Patriots clinched their sixth straight AFC East title on Sunday with a 41-13 romp over the Miami Dolphins. New England has won 11 of the 13 AFC East titles since 2002. Only the Jets in 2002 and the Dolphins in 2008 were able to disrupt the reign of Tom Brady and Bill Belichick. The Colts, meanwhile, have won nine of the 13 AFC South titles after Sunday's 17-10 over the Houston Texans. They're just ahead of a group that are still in contention for their own division titles in 2014: the Green Bay Packers (7), the Seattle Seahawks (6) and the Philadelphia Eagles (6). (The Eagles' chances for winning the NFC East, however, took a big hit with their loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday night.) Check out our updated NFL playoff picture page .  A few other division title-related facts: • The Denver Broncos won their fifth AFC West title since 2002 by beating the San Diego Chargers, who also have five division titles to their name.  • Four teams have never won a division title under the current format: the Buffalo Bills, Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions and Jacksonville Jaguars.  • Five teams have won one division title since 2002: Dolphins, Jets, Washington Redskins, St. Louis Rams and Oakland Raiders • All four teams in the NFC South have won three division titles apiece. Whoever "wins" the division this year will take the lead over the other three teams. Carolina currently holds the lead with a 5-8-1 record.  - - - - - - - Kevin Kaduk is a writer for Yahoo Sports .. Have a tip? Email him at kevinkaduk@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @KevinKaduk [read full article]

From Yahoo Sports

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