Even though it is just preseason and the games do not count in the standings, there is something to be said for doing things the right way. The Broncos are doing things the right way.
Competitors want to win. While the 30-10 loss to Seattle will quickly fade from most of our memories, the Broncos did not like that losing feeling whatsoever.
“It’s always disappointing, whether it’s preseason or regular season, to lose a game,” Broncos Executive Vice President of Football Operations John Elway told 850 KOA on Thursday.
Head coach John Fox told us the same thing earlier in the week.
“Every time you throw it out there, you want to win. Obviously you feel better when you win,” Fox said.
I love the perspective the Broncos have. Even though it’s just the preseason, they want to win. If they’re going to be on the field, they might as well beat the other team. Good for them.
I also love the fact that they fully recognize where they are in the process. It’s about competing; it’s about winning; it’s about formulating the strongest possible roster for the regular season opener against Pittsburgh on September 9.
“We’re coming up to the tough time of year when you have to cut down to 75 (players) by Monday and 53-man roster five days later, next Friday,” Elway said. “This is getting to the crucial time to where we have to find the best 53 guys”
It’s also about playing good football, even now. Rest assured, there were not too many happy campers after the loss to Seattle.
“It was terrible,” linebacker Joe Mays said of the defensive performance against the Seahawks. “We know how we can come out and play this game. We know that we can come out and play with the best of them. We definitely didn’t show that this past weekend. We gave up too many big plays (and) most of it came from the run. We have to be better.”
Yes, they do. Quarterback Peyton Manning, who threw two interceptions against Seattle, told 850 KOA after the game that performances like he turned in simply will not cut it.
“We moved the ball well but just didn’t finish well in the red zone,” Manning said. “The interceptions and the turnovers are just inexcusable. They’re drive killers; they’re game killers.”
“Every interception has a story (but) nobody really wants to hear it,” Manning continued. “The quarterback signs the check for every throw that he makes. That’s three interceptions, two in the red zone in two weeks and (there’s) just no excuse for it. Tipped balls or not, somehow, some way, at the end of every play the quarterback’s job is to possess the ball. That’s something I have to do a better job of.”
All of this reflects a culture that is committed to winning at the highest level. It doesn’t guarantee anything but it certainly is a good foundation for the long journey that will begin in a matter of weeks.
We who follow the Broncos can hurry up and wish for the regular season to get here. Let me raise my hand and admit my guilt in doing that every August.
The Broncos are, thankfully, much more measured and thorough as they go through this arduous and, at times, tedious, preseason process.
And even though it’s only preseason, they want to win.
I love it.
What are you hoping to see when the Broncos host the 49ers in the third preseason game this weekend?
Thanks for reading and posting your thoughts.