There is an adage in baseball that when one never knows what one will see in any given game.
It’s one thing to say that in baseball, when there is a game virtually every day. But you don’t usually hear that phrase uttered when talking about a football team.
Welcome to the world the 2011 Denver Broncos are living in. You never know what you’ll see when they take the field.
Consider a handful of unlikely scenarios.
Against the Jets, the Broncos gained 59 yards on the team’s first possession. Over their next ten series, they had 75 yards of total offense. Then, with 5:54 left in the game and trailing 13-10, the Broncos drove 95 yards in 12 plays and scored what turned out to be the game-winning touchdown.
In four of the five games that quarterback Tim Tebow has started, the Broncos have scored 18 points or fewer. Yet, they have won four times in Tebow’s five starts.
Figure that out.
In addition, over the same five-game span, the Broncos offense has converted 17-of-69 third down opportunities (24.6%). Over that same span, they are 0-of-7 in fourth down situations. But again, they are 4-1 in the five games Tebow has started.
For as much that is inexplicable about the Broncos’ recent success, there are two things that have become readily apparent.
First, the Broncos’ defense is playing some serious ball. Denver has allowed 15 or fewer points in three of its last five games, and only 23 points in its last two.
Beyond that, the defense is developing a tough, nasty attitude and making big plays. There is little doubt that the Broncos are playing with great confidence on the defensive side of the football right now.
Second, Tebow has a knack for coming up big when the moment demands it. Most dramatically, he did it against the Dolphins and the Jets. That’s tough to coach. If the Broncos defense can keep the game close and Denver is within a possession or two in the fourth quarter, they can always hope the Tebow Factor kicks in.
I have no idea if, over the long haul, the Broncos can expect to rely on its recent formula to win games and be a consistent playoff contender.
Perhaps they can. One never knows.
San Diego is up next. Will the Broncos get even for an earlier loss to the Chargers?
Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts.