The contrast is startling.
At times, the Broncos look like a great team. In the same game, they often look completely out of it.
That was certainly the case Sunday against the Rams. The Broncos played really well on their first three possessions when they scored 13 points and moved the ball seemingly at will.
The defense held Rams’ running back Steven Jackson down and looked like it was in for a good day.
That all changed…again. The Rams defense turned things around and unfortunately, so did the Rams offense. The result was a 33-13 St. Louis lead through three quarters.
On Monday, Broncos head coach Josh McDaniels again talked about his team’s inconsistent play.
“I think that’s been one of our issues this season, our overall consistency,” McDaniels said.
That inconsistency seems to be more acute on defense. On Sunday, the Broncos held the Rams three-plays-and-out on their first series. Then St. Louis, a team that was averaging 17 points per game entering Sunday, scored three touchdowns and two field goals on their next five possessions.
The Broncos’ defense regrouped and held the Rams to just a field goal in the fourth quarter.
“There have been three or four games where I think we limit Jamaal Charles and Chris Johnson and Steven Jackson to two-and-a-half yards a carry,” McDaniels said. “Then there are other games where we don’t play the same and give up production to different backs that we haven’t done all season.”
Case in point: Rams’ quarterback Sam Bradford. He turned in his first-career 300-yard passing game and led the Rams to their first road win this season. In addition, the Elias Sports Bureau says Bradford became the first rookie quarterback in NFL history to throw for 300-plus yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions in a road game.
Bradford is a good young talent. But seeing him break out like he did on Sunday was disappointing.
“Its not that we haven’t played well,” McDaniels said. “It’s just that we haven’t done it consistently enough. There’s a lot of reasons you’re consistent at something.”
It is clear the Broncos have been consistent at being inconsistent. And it is one reason the Broncos have struggled to the record they have.
“When you’re 3-8 or when you’re not playing as well as you want to play, the responsibility for that falls a number of places,” McDaniels said. “I’ll be the first one to stand up and say I can do a better job. But again, this is a team game, a situation where you have to have a lot of people do the right thing and execute at a high level.”
I’ll be interested to see if more coaches and players do a better job and execute at a higher level more often in the last five games of the season.
Thanks for reading. I always appreciate it.