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Photo: Genessa Gutzait · The Sentry

A brief reprieve

The Broncos ended their losing ways on Thursday Night by steamrolling the Cardinals by 35 points; unfortunately, it doesn’t change much.  

Even though it felt relieving to see Von Miller and the defense absolutely humiliate the Cards and their overwhelmed rookie quarterback, in a performance reminiscent of the 2015 No-Fly Zone, let’s take the win with a grain of salt. To say the Cardinals are a JV team would be an insult to JV teams everywhere, they’re horrible. In seven games they’ve only eclipsed 14 points twice, while giving up at least 25 points five times.  

The Broncos were able to exorcise some of its demons on a pathetic football team, that doesn’t mean Denver isn’t left without its fair of issues.  

Despite trashing the leagues 27th ranked defense, Case Keenum had an uninspiring night, albeit in a game where he didn’t need to do much. Keenum had 161 yards, one touchdown and one interception. He wasn’t horrible, but he wasn’t the reason the Broncos are winning. And after very much being a pivotal reason the Broncos dropped four straight, that’s a major red flag.  

The most positive news coming out of the State Farm Stadium was a suddenly resurgent Broncos defense. Miller roared out of his slump with two sacks, Bradley Chubb continued to polish off his Defensive Rookie of the Year resume with five sacks in the last two weeks, while the secondary picked Josh Rosen off three times. However, is the new-found defensive prowess sustainable? Next Sunday’s visit to Arrowhead, and another showdown with the sophomore sensation Patrick Mahomes should provide a litmus test.  

The Broncos are 3-4, with a quarterback with the 2nd most interceptions in the league, with the 26th ranked defense, and a head coach who continues to make head-scratching decisions in close games. Two games against the division leading Chiefs and Texans will be the defining moment for the Broncos season. If the Broncos have any hope in avoiding diving into a full-blown rebuild they have to do more than just preform admirably, they have to win.  

If the Broncos go 0-2 in that stretch headed to their bye week, heads will roll.  

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