I’m not sure what the Broncos’ final record will be this season. But I now know for certain it will be much better than many people thought it would be.
We all know the NFL tends to be a week-to-week business. The prevailing thought is that a team seems to be only as good as how well it played the previous game.
After defeating the Patriots, the Broncos deserved to celebrate a terrific win. It is clear that they are a really good team.
And they can be even better.
The key to how good the Broncos will be can be found in a comment Kyle Orton made on the 850 KOA post-game show.
“We improved from week four to week five,” Orton said. “Now the goal is to to humble ourselves again and improve from week five to (week) six. I know all these vets that we have. We’re going to come back and work even harder this week and be a better team (in) week six.”
If the Broncos stay humble, work hard and (as Head Coach Josh McDaniels preaches) play tough and smart, the sky is the limit. The key is humility.
They know they are a good team. But if they continue to see themselves as a team that needs to improve, that needs to tighten up the loose spots, that needs to keep grinding, then I believe they will maximize their chances to have a truly special season. If they do these things, none of their accomplishments will surprise me at all.
To me, a good team is a collection of individuals who come together and contribute to the success of the group, even if it means sacrificing some personal achievement. The Broncos have done this perfectly through the first five weeks of the season.
A good team isn’t without its issues, conflicts or adversity. But a good team is, in large part, defined by how it deals with and overcomes such things.
To this point (and to this outside observer), the Broncos have dealt with them in just the right way. That starts at the top. That starts with ownership and the head coach. It continues with the coaching staff preparing the players. It ends with the effort the players put forth during the game.
On the field, the Broncos have shown themselves to be a team that has different players come to the forefront. Eddie Royal broke out with 10 catches against New England. Knowshon Moreno had a key role. Jabar Gaffney made more of an impact.
Every week, the Broncos seem to have different players who step forward. One week it is Brandon Stokley or Elvis Dumervil or Correll Buckhalter. The next week it is Brandon Marshall or Eddie Royal or Brian Dawkins.
That speaks to talent, depth, work with ethic and a selfless approach. Attributes such as those can carry a team a long way.
The Broncos’ 5-0 start has caused many people to take notice, jump on the bandwagon and start believing. Those are all good things and there is nothing wrong with them.
I love the fact that more people are recognizing the Broncos as a good team. They deserve that. I hope they take the attention in stride. I believe they will.
But there is a danger in thinking one is in a place when one isn’t yet there. The fact is that the Broncos have 11 games left to play in the regular season. A lot of good can happen in that time but so can a lot of bad if they don’t stay grounded.
Years ago, a man I respect told me something about recognition that I have never forgotten.
“Breathe it in,” he said “but not too deeply.”
The Broncos are off to a terrific start and they seem to be staying humble about it. They know there is still plenty of work to do. More than anything, those things get me excited about what the season could hold.
Thanks for reading. Feel free to share your thoughts about the win over the Patriots or the upcoming game against San Diego.