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Old 10-19-2009, 11:29 AM   #1
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Default Scouting Report: Broncos vs. Chargers

Sorry to interrupt the Cutler circle jerk...BUT... Since we have a game tonight, I thought some people might be interested.


Scouting Report: Broncos vs. Chargers

5 Things to Watch

1. The first round

This is a classic ambush scenario for the Broncos. The Chargers are desperate, have had two weeks to prepare and have enough talent on their roster, despite some key injuries, to play with more passion than they have previously. Some in the league blame coach Norv Turner for the team's wobbly play thus far, especially on defense, but the first quarter will set the tempo in this one. Folks are going to know early whether the Chargers have enough going for them to take their best swing right out of the gate. And folks are going to know whether or not the Broncos are feeling a little too comfortable, at 5-0, with the bye week on the horizon. In 2008, the Chargers led 24-6 in San Diego after one quarter. In 2007, they led 16-0 at the half and 23-3 at the end of the third quarter. And in 2006, they led 28-3 at the half.

2. Young man Rivers


No, a lot of people may not like him, but Philip Rivers has done pretty much what he has wanted against the Broncos defense in his three previous years as a starter. Check the toteboard and the numbers are plenty ugly: Rivers has thrown 12 touchdown passes and just three interceptions in six previous career starts against the Broncos.

3. Middle men


When nose tackle Jamal Williams went on injured reserve with a torn triceps, the foundation of the Chargers' defense went with him. Williams made it all work, and opposing offenses have certainly noticed the difference.

Teams are pounding the ball right at the middle of the San Diego defense. Alfonso Boone and Ogemdi Nwagbuo have not been able to hold their ground at the point of attack. Opposing offenses have run right behind the center or right guard a combined 60 times already this season — or just over 61 percent of the running plays the Chargers have faced — with almost continuous success.

4. Shawne Merriman


It's unclear why the Chargers wouldn't just sit their impact pass rusher after he strained a groin in Week 2, but they kept suiting him up and Merriman missed virtually all of the next two games, taking up a roster spot while only playing a handful of plays. He has just eight tackles this season, with no sacks and no tackles for loss. If he has healed up some, the Broncos will see a far different player from what the Dolphins or Steelers did in San Diego's previous two games.


5. Traffic on memory lane


Most of the players on the current Broncos roster were in other places doing other things, but the 2008 season finale was the worst in what has been a steady drumbeat of misery over the previous three jaunts to San Diego for the team.

In short, it's been quite some time since the Broncos played well there. It's easy to forget the Broncos actually led, 6-3, last season when Tatum Bell scored with 7:36 left in the first quarter. But Matt Prater missed the extra point — it bounced off the left upright — and that was the first frayed thread in a night that unraveled from there.

When the Broncos run

Three teams — Oakland, Miami and Baltimore — have pounded the Chargers with run-by-committee approaches similar to what the Broncos use.

Having surrendered at least 130 yards rushing in all four games, the Chargers have been dismal on run defense, especially in the middle of the field where offenses have taken their shots the majority of the time.

The Broncos have been well-balanced in their ground game, having split carries 35 percent to the right, 34 percent up the middle and 31 percent to the left.

Edge: Broncos

When the Chargers run

The Chargers have been battered up front and are missing injured center Nick Hardwick, and they have not been themselves in this phase of the game. Darren Sproles is averaging just 2.4 yards per carry, LaDainian Tomlinson is averaging just 3.5 and the team doesn't have a run longer than 13 yards.

They have struggled badly enough and have trailed in games early enough that they are running the ball less than 45 percent of the time on first-and-10.

Edge: Broncos

When the Broncos pass

Against the Patriots last week, Denver went topside and Kyle Orton threw a career-high 49 times. Coach Norv Turner should have a fix on Orton since his brother, Ron, was Orton's offensive coordinator with the Bears.

The Chargers have been spotty in the secondary, and Antonio Cromartie, who led the league in interceptions in 2007 with 10, has struggled. He had two third-down penalties against the Steelers in San Diego's last game — and both kept scoring drives alive.

Edge: Broncos

When the Chargers pass

It would be risky for any defense to think that with all of the struggles the Chargers have had this season, they still couldn't throw their way to victory. TE Antonio Gates, WR Vincent Jackson and Sproles give QB Philip Rivers a nice, three-tiered look.

Jackson is Rivers' favorite for the haymaker — 18.7 yards per catch — and on third down, Rivers looks for Gates. Nine of Gates' 24 catches have come on third down.

Edge: Chargers

Special teams

The Broncos have been one of the league's worst on kickoff returns, and they continue to suffer penalties on these units — eight in the kicking game alone in five games.

Denver has had some difficulty stopping Sproles, an impact returner who runs well in a crowd and hits the creases quickly.

Edge: Chargers

Predictions

Lindsay H. Jones (4-1)

Broncos 21, San Diego 17

Learned my lesson last week; won't pick against the Broncos again 'til they lose.

Mark Kiszla (5-0)

Chargers 24, Broncos 20

The last jolt of fury from Bolts that are fizzling out?

Mike Klis (3-2)

Chargers 28, Broncos 27

Broncos cover the spread, not Philip Rivers' effectiveness.

Dave Krieger (3-2)

Broncos 28, Chargers 20

There's no D in San Iego.

Jeff Legwold (2-3)

Chargers 27, Broncos 24

Guard Ben Hamilton said "keep picking us to lose" — so don't want to mess with the man's streak.

Woody Paige (1-4)

Chargers 24, Broncos 17

I was wrong. The Broncos will not go 4-12, but I may.

http://www.denverpost.com/premium/broncos/ci_13590932
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:38 AM   #2
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In all honesty, I don't see how we lose this game. Obviously it's a division match-up on the road so that throws some of the logic out of the way. But right now the Bolts are a team that can't run and worse can't stop the run. Assuming we don't come out asleep at the wheel we should be good to go
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:40 AM   #3
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There's no D in San Iego.
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:44 AM   #4
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Going to be a tough tough game.

If we can hold our own in the first half, we should be able to come out strong in the second and hold on for the win.

SD knows this is a must win, so I expect their Defense to play their best they have all season.
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:51 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDave View Post
In all honesty, I don't see how we lose this game. Obviously it's a division match-up on the road so that throws some of the logic out of the way. But right now the Bolts are a team that can't run and worse can't stop the run. Assuming we don't come out asleep at the wheel we should be good to go
I'm most concerned about the passing game (on both offense and defense). As much as it pains me to say it, Rivers is a really really good quarterback. If he gets time, I'm afraid that he could pick us apart. I'm still nervous about our linebackers in coverage.

I'm also nervous that Orton will have a bad game. He's definitely had a few bounces go his way, and those have a way of evening out over the course of a season. Losing the turnover battle could definitely result in our first loss.
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:52 AM   #6
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We will see a desperate team... I just don't know if there is anything they can do about the lass of Williams. Weigmann and Kupe should have their way with SD's line all night.
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:55 AM   #7
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I think our run game should have 150 plus yards
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:55 AM   #8
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SD is desperate. I look for them to come out with fire. I we can weather that, I think we can pull it out, especially if we can neutralize Rivers and that passing game.

Statistically, its gonna be tough playing a team coming off of their bye week.
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:56 AM   #9
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It's San Iego..you can't polish a Turd!
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Old 10-19-2009, 11:59 AM   #10
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I say 200 plus combined on the ground!
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Old 10-19-2009, 12:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDave View Post
In all honesty, I don't see how we lose this game. Obviously it's a division match-up on the road so that throws some of the logic out of the way. But right now the Bolts are a team that can't run and worse can't stop the run. Assuming we don't come out asleep at the wheel we should be good to go
I want to agree, I really do, but I've just seen Denver lose to teams they had no business losing to far too often.
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Old 10-19-2009, 12:07 PM   #12
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It's San Iego..you can't polish a Turd!
You can polish a turd. It's been proven.
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Old 10-19-2009, 12:09 PM   #13
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Broncos have gone 3 consecutive games without allowing a solitary 3rd down conversion in second half. For the season Broncos have allowed only 2 of 31 2nd half third down conversions.

However, having said that we historically haven't fared well on MNF (only AFC West team with losing record) or in San Diego...and this is a MNF game in San Diego

......so I approach this game with cautious optimism. But because I'm the greatest Bronco fan in the world. I'm going with Broncos 23-20...Orton and McDaniels win another close one that still won't shut critics up.
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Old 10-19-2009, 12:16 PM   #14
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We have all the intangibles that SD held last season's game there.

We are the ones that believe we will win.

We are the ones willing to leave it all on the field.

We are the ones that have the best coaching.

We are the ones that believe this is a season of destiny.

We are the ones that are healthy

We are the ones beating people up.


We are the ones that will win in a blow out. 35 to 13 Broncos.
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Old 10-19-2009, 12:17 PM   #15
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Quote:
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You can polish a turd. It's been proven.
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Old 10-19-2009, 12:20 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2KBack View Post
I want to agree, I really do, but I've just seen Denver lose to teams they had no business losing to far too often.
That was a different team, for all intents and purposes.
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Old 10-19-2009, 12:35 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlaK-Argentina View Post
You can polish a turd. It's been proven.
You can but it takes a lot of laquer and some beedy eyes and they end up in Airport gift Shops in Anchorage! LMAO!!
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:18 PM   #18
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No interceptions from Orton, and we have at least a 50-50 chance.

In fact, I think the game should be pick'em, or either team favored by just 1 point.
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:27 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoMcBuff View Post
No interceptions from Orton, and we have at least a 50-50 chance.

In fact, I think the game should be pick'em, or either team favored by just 1 point.
I think it would be if SD wasn't coming off a bye week.
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:29 PM   #20
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No interceptions from Orton, and we have at least a 50-50 chance.

In fact, I think the game should be pick'em, or either team favored by just 1 point.
Way to commit Bronco "I love Cutler except when I don't" Buff.
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:30 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bronco Warrior View Post
It's San Iego..you can't polish a Tur!
fixed it for you. Somehow a "d" got in there...
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:36 PM   #22
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fixed it for you. Somehow a "d" got in there...
My Ba_! I misse_ that one!
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:38 PM   #23
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Quote:
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In all honesty, I don't see how we lose this game. Obviously it's a division match-up on the road so that throws some of the logic out of the way. But right now the Bolts are a team that can't run and worse can't stop the run. Assuming we don't come out asleep at the wheel we should be good to go
Kinda how I feel as well... on paper there is no way we should lose this game. McD shouldn't allow the team to have a let down either. I have no idea how this game is going to turn out though. Here at work, I made a prediction of a 21-23 win with a last minute/second field goal. I feel like we should have success running the ball, but teams have been successful running inside on the Chargers and we aren't exactly a power team with our interior OL... The teams that have had success against the Chargers up the middle, are they quite a bit bigger at Center and Guard?
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:38 PM   #24
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Cutler carelessness with the ball can decide the result in this one.
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:38 PM   #25
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Quote:
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No interceptions from Orton, and we have at least a 50-50 chance.

In fact, I think the game should be pick'em, or either team favored by just 1 point.
Homefield is worth 3 points when it comes to spreads. A neutral field and Vegas thinks people will bet on Chargers giving a half a point
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