Originally Posted by TonyR
Do you think this was a result of Ball just performing better, KC defending Moreno differently, or coincidence? Or a combination? The production differences between the two are difficult to ignore, as is how completely Knowshon got shut down from a rushing perspective. And I don't think "gimpiness" had much, or anything, to do with it. He seemed to be running and moving just fine.
Without Ball's 45 yard run, the Broncos rush totals would have been pedestrian. The Chiefs ran almost strictly with a 6 man box, 4 man rush. At first blush, I was pretty concerned...but after looking at it more closely, there is reason for optimism. Here's why:
1. There are no other teams in the AFC who have a front 6 as strong as the Chiefs. The combo of Eric Berry and Derrick Johnson at both half-field LB's in the Chiefs Nickel package (2 deep Safety's with Berry at LB) is the stuff dreams are made of.
2. Montee Ball had great ability to pick up 1st downs against Chiefs Nickel, he's just more elusive (this game) than Knowshon.
3. Broncos still scored 35...on the road.
The Broncos OL could not find a way to consistently block Eric Berry (who played lights out) or Derrick Johnson, but were still able to find a way to pick up 1st downs when it mattered most.
I bet we see these guys again in round 2 of the playoffs...and I hope it's in mile high.