MILE HIGH MONDAY

Mile High Monday: The Broncos may have to rely on Melvin Gordon

Oct 3, 2022, 6:33 AM
Melvin Gordon...
(Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images)

The Denver Broncos lost to the formerly winless Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday. Former Broncos head coach Josh McDaniels outcoached current Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett, and the Raiders won by a score of 32-23.

I like good football, and the Broncos aren’t putting a good product on the field. They are 2-2 in this young season, but they are not getting the easier wins at the beginning of the season I thought they would.

I also like contemplating life and sports when driving around with the top down on my old Jeep 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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Fear the Worst

I love Broncos starting running back Javonte Williams. He was my No. 1 graded running back when he came out of North Carolina in 2021, and I was elated – as the Broncos were – when Denver picked him up in the second round. I was looking forward to Williams as the starting running back this season after he served as a backup to Melvin Gordon as a rookie.

Now, I may have to wait longer to see Williams back on the field for the Broncos. Against the Raiders, Williams went down with what is being feared to be a serious knee injury. It looked bad when it happened, and Williams was carted off the field. After the game, the running back was seen on crutches leaving the locker room. Testing will be done on Monday, but the early speculation is that Williams could miss a significant amount of time.

If Williams does miss time, the Broncos could turn to Gordon as their starter. He’s got plenty of experience, but Gordon has fumbled in five straight games dating back to the season finale of 2021. He’s fumbled in every game so far this season, and he’s lost two of them – including one against the Raiders that was returned for a touchdown. The Broncos don’t have much choice, other than perhaps Mike Boone, to take the place of Williams.

We’ll see what the test results bring on Monday, but I don’t expect Williams to be back anytime soon. This means the Broncos could be forced to use Gordon as their starter with Boone was his primary backup. That also means practice squad running back Devine Ozigbo could be called up to the active roster in the near future.

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Staying on Schedule

Russell Wilson was quite honest in his postgame press conference. He is open at press conferences, but Wilson is the type of player who can answer a question and not really reveal too much. He’s perfected the non-answer while still giving quite a bit of time in what he says. After the game, I felt Wilson hit the nail on the head when he said the offensive problems come from getting off schedule.

Too often this year, the Broncos offense has put themselves in a bad down-and-distance situation. I blame the play calling of Hackett, but it’s also the execution of the offense. There are many times the Broncos will run a bad play to start a drive, then spend the rest of their downs trying to dig themselves out of a hole. This comes from the order the plays are called, but it also comes from the errors before, during, and after the plays.

The Broncos are shooting themselves in the foot for lack of a better term. They get penalties before a play, which moves the offense back and puts themselves in a bad position. During a play, the Broncos will run short of the sticks, or drop an easy pass, which means they don’t advance the ball as far as they could have or at all. The Broncos can also line up in the wrong formation and get called for that penalty, in addition to plenty of holding penalties.

It seems to be feast or famine with the Broncos. They either get two yards on a play or twenty. There doesn’t seem to be the design which features the players at their best. Their offense also does not have the consistency needed to create balance on both sides of the ball. As we saw against the Raiders, the defense couldn’t get off the field and the offense could not keep the defense fresh with long, sustained drives. To get on the winning track – and stay there – the Broncos must do their best to stay on schedule.

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Please Sir, Can I Have Some More?

Wide receiver K.J. Hamler is one of my favorite players on the Broncos’ roster. First off, he’s faster than most players in the NFL. The league is full of speed, but Hamler’s speed is matched by few in the league. Hamler’s speed gives him a special ability that others don’t have. However, that’s not the reason I appreciate his game.

Hamler has a ton of heart. He is out to prove the doubters wrong after a mostly lost season in 2021 due to a knee and hip injury that required surgery. Hamler has been slowly brought back by the team as they cautiously move him back into the lineup. On Sunday, Hamler caught his first pass of the season, and it was a beautiful one.

With Wilson dialed in, he was able to strike down the field for a 55-yard gain that almost went into the end zone. Hamler was able to get open deep, and Wilson threw a pretty pass for the biggest gain of the game for the Broncos offense. Had Wilson put it out in front of Hamler just a bit more, he would have scored with ease. However, he did have to let up a little bit for the pass to catch up to him and was tackled short of the end zone.

I’d like to see more deep shots from the Broncos offense. It’s not like Wilson and Hamler lack chemistry, but if Wilson knows to put that pass out in front of Hamler more it will lead to even bigger plays.

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I Will Always Love You

The nerd world was buzzing last week when Deadpool actor Ryan Reynolds made a big announcement. Everyone has been waiting for the character Deadpool to make his debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe since Disney purchased Fox Studios a couple of years ago. Deadpool has been featured in two rated-R movies that have made billions and made him one of the most popular superheroes in movies.

Reynolds is perfect for the “merc with a mouth.” He’s a sarcastic actor with a tremendous wit, and he also loves to make fun of his friend Hugh Jackman. Like Reynolds, Jackman played a beloved character for Fox Studios and has yet to make his debut in the MCU. As the fan favorite ‘Wolverine’ Jackman is synonymous with the Canadian antihero.

In a funny video, Reynolds asked his buddy if he would play Wolverine one more time. This was the announcement that had comic book nerds like me going gaga about a week ago. The movie “Deadpool 3” will be released in 2024 with both Deadpool and Wolverine making their MCU debut. This is going to be a huge event, and this will likely be a billion-dollar movie that everyone must see. Well, it should be rate “R” again, so everyone who can see it should and will.

How excited are you for the next Deadpool movie? Hit me up on social networking and let me know!

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