MILE HIGH MONDAY

Broncos can change the narrative with a win over the Bills

Nov 13, 2023, 5:47 AM

The Denver Broncos are waiting patiently for their turn in Week 10. They play on “Monday Night Football” against the Buffalo Bills and are looking to win three in a row.

I like when the Broncos play a primetime game. They are not the team they were earlier this year, and I’m expecting them to play better football than they did last time in front of a national audience.

I also like contemplating life and sports when driving around with the top down on my old Jeep Wrangler TJ! The following is a result of those trips during the week.

Buckle up, let’s take a ride through my thoughts.

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Everyone loves Dobbs

The NFL is full of surprises. One of the biggest surprises of the season is Minnesota Vikings QB Josh Dobbs. He began this year as a backup with the Cleveland Browns, but a trade right before the start of the season to the Arizona Cardinals saw him as the team’s starter. Once the Vikings lost starter Kirk Cousins for the year, Dobbs was on the move again to his third team in 2023.

The Vikings didn’t want him to start last week as he was only with the team for a few days, but an injury to rookie starter Jaren Hall meant he had to play. Even though he didn’t know the plays, Dobbs led the team to a win over the Atlanta Falcons in Week 9. Entering Week 10, Dobbs was the clear-cut starter and there is legitimate excitement around the Vikings as they’re going to try and push for the postseason.

That excitement went up a notch or two after another Dobbs victory on Sunday, this time over the New Orleans Saints. The Vikings looked like a team that was going to miss the postseason with Cousins starting, and things looked even more bleak. However, things can change quickly in the NFL and when momentum is involved then anything can happen.

Could Russell Wilson begin to change the narrative about his game like Dobbs has done this season? The Broncos are on a two-game winning streak, and they beat the defending champion Kansas City Chiefs the last time out. Dobbs is a darling in the NFL, while many fans are tired of Wilson. However, if Wilson leads the Broncos to the postseason the talk about his game (and what he’s got left in the tank) will change. Like with the Vikings, anything can happen with the Broncos.

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Playoffs are on the line

Any headline about “Monday Night Football” reveals the Buffalo Bills are slumping and looking to bounce back against the Broncos. It’s true, as the Bills (once seen as Super Bowl contenders) are not currently in the playoffs if they began today. Neither are the Broncos, but they’re trying to work their way into the picture.

The Bills lost to a Super Bowl contender last week against the Cincinatti Bengals, so they have a ton of pressure on them to get back on the winning track. The Broncos are turning things around, but to further quiet the doubters a win against the Bills would go a long way. I know the Broncos could let a game like this slip away and still be hanging around the playoff picture when December draws near. However, I don’t like that sentiment.

Win the games in front of you, and the Broncos should not be thinking they could let one slide. They had their slump at the beginning of the season, losing their first two games of the 2023 season (and both contests they should have won). They’ve had their mulligans against teams like the Las Vegas Raiders and Washington Commanders. Simply put, the Broncos don’t have any room for more losses – but neither do the Bills.

I think the Broncos could win this game in Buffalo. Not many people think they will, and most think the Bills are set to look like the team we expected them to be against an inferior opponent. This Broncos team is not the one who got trounced by 50 points to the Miami Dolphins. They have turned things around and are surging while the Bills are stumbling. That makes this potential outcome a bit more obvious than some would think. I could totally be wrong, but I’ve got a feeling the Broncos will at least keep this game closer than most think or flat-out win against the Bills in Week 10.

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Allen plays wild, and that can cost the Bills

If the Broncos want to beat the Bills, they need to handle QB Josh Allen and the passing game for Buffalo. Allen is a superstar in this game, but he can make a lot of costly mistakes for the Bills. There’s no throw on the field he can’t make, so Allen will take chances with the ball that others don’t. That leads to plenty of interceptions.

The Broncos pass-rushers can get after Allen, but they need to be ready to bring him down when they get there. Allen is huge, mobile, and one of the league’s most dangerous runners when the play breaks down. There will be designed runs for Allen, and at times he’s their best runner. However, Allen can choose to take off and run which could be disastrous for Denver.

The Broncos need to keep Allen throwing – as odd as that may seem. The more he throws, the better chances the team has of getting an interception (or more) on Monday night. Allen is not rattled by the rush, but he’s got “arm arrogance” and believes in trying tight window throws more often than he should.

Allen is going to play wild, and that’s a good thing for the Broncos. They need to pressure him, sack him when they can, but try and fool him into some ill-advised throws to receivers that seem open but really aren’t. It’s not going to be easy, but Allen is not flawless and the key to victory is exposing his natural flaws as a quarterback.

***

Nerds love football…and comics!

There is no doubt that I’m a nerd. In fact, I’m a proud nerd. When I love something, like comic books or football, I really, really love it. Over the weekend, I was a featured artist at the All C’s Fan Expo, and I had a great time talking comics with fans. However, 80 percent of the comic fans ended up asking me about the Broncos too.

It may have been odd at one point in time, but now football fans are also comic book fans. This has to do with the popularity of Marvel movies in pop culture as superhero culture has taken over in the last decade. Like me, there are a lot of nerds who love both football and comic books. Also like me, I ran into a lot of crazy fantasy football players who were excited about the games.

I think the NFL has also expanded their fan base. Fantasy football has always been a part of that as people who didn’t used to watch football now are rabid about it. Gambling being legalized in most states also helps the popularity. Also, I think the togetherness people feel from fandom (comics or football) helps as well. We may not all see eye to eye on some bigger issues, but we can cheer for our teams – or our superheroes – together. At a comic book convention, it was great to see so many Broncos and NFL fans there as well.

Do you love both football and comic books? Hit me up on social networking and let me know!

Mile High Monday

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Broncos can change the narrative with a win over the Bills