I know there are two games left and the Broncos need to try to win them. But I’m taking a deep breath after the loss to Houston and starting to think about next year.
The Broncos aren’t mathematically eliminated from the playoffs but the way they are playing, and have played this year, they have showed they are not a playoff team.
But they have pieces in place that, to me, show they could be a playoff team again as early as next year.
Offensively, I love the way Jay Cutler has progressed. I wrote about this a week ago and even though he has had some ups and downs, I think he is going to be terrific. Given the fact he has started just over one season worth of games, I think he has made great progress. And he will get even better.
Brandon Marshall is showing he can be a without-a-doubt, legitimate, game-breaking number one wide receiver. He has been super, and yet because he is still so young, he is bound to get better as well, provided he keeps working hard.
Tight end Tony Scheffler continues to make plays. He’s big, strong and athletic. He gives the Broncos a downfield threat from the tight end position.
I like the way Selvin Young and Andre Hall have given the Broncos options at running back. I don’t really know if either one can be a featured back in the NFL but I know they have played pretty well as rookies this year. If nothing else, they’ll give the Broncos depth at the position. They could very well give more than that.
On defense, Champ Bailey is still amazing and Hamza Abdullah has shown an ability to make plays from the safety spot. Again, Abdullah is a young player and whether or not he is ready to be a full-time starter remains to be seen.
I think D.J. Williams is a good linebacker. I don’t know football well enough to know if he is best-suited for middle linebacker or not, but he’s a quality player.
As we mentioned a week ago, Elvis Dumervil has shown the ability to put pressure on the quarterback.
My biggest questions are found with the offensive and defensive lines. The Broncos have been inconsistent in running the ball and stopping the run all season long. Yes, there have been injuries and turnover in those units. But every team deals with these issues.
As I take my deep breath, I come to the realization that the Broncos have to get better up front. And I think it is possible for that to happen soon. If it does, I think the Broncos will be a playoff team again.
If it takes some time, then we’ll all have to be a little more patient.
What area would you like to see the Broncos address? Thanks in advance for taking the time to share your thoughts. And thanks for reading.