I haven't watched the Chiefs much, but from looking at stats week after week, I knew Matt Cassel wasn't having the greatest season. However, until you watch him for a full game, you have no idea just how dreadful the man is. The Chiefs can't be pleased that they are on the hook for a six year 63 million dollar deal to the horrible QB. Granted, contracts in the NFL aren't guaranteed, but 28 million of it is guaranteed. Oops. Cassel was horribly inaccurate, and when he wasn't off, the Chief receivers would drop the ball.
The final result? A downright boring game, that was only fun to watch if you're a Broncos fan. The Broncos completely outplayed a very untalented football team in a 44-13 romp that wasn't as close as the score indicated. No, seriously. I was worried about this game in the first quarter when the Chiefs went on a 20 play drive that lasted almost eight minutes. However, the Broncos held KC to a figgie, and after that, the rout was on.
Positives from the Game:
The running game: Pretty much the entire game the Broncos were running at will. In fact...let's give three guys some individual credit here because they all deserve it.
Correll Buckhalter: Buck was on fire. He averaged 9.4 yards per carry, and if you're new to football, rest assured that's very good. His slashing style ripped through the Chiefs like a hot knife through soft serve ice cream. It was fun to watch as he continually kept moving the chains. Buckhalter finished with 113 yards on 12 carries, his best day of the year. Did I start him on either of my fantasy football teams, even though I own him on both teams and I'm thin at running back?? Of course not. I'm an idiot.
Knowshon Moreno: Knowshon ONLY averaged 4.1 yards per carry. What a slacker! Actually, he probably does need to work on his patience a bit, but overall he had a very solid day with 86 yards on 21 carries and a couple of touch-goals. (Very inside joke that maybe two people in the world will get.)
Peyton Hillis: Okay, so he only got mop up duty, but he reminded Broncos fans why we love him so much. He was doing his bulldozer impression and driving defenders for yards and yards while they attempted to tackle him. I love watching him run, because he's a beast. He got 7 carries at the end and rumbled for 47 yards to wipe out the clock. Good stuff.
A large contingent of Broncos fans were on hand to cheer on their defense to a dominating performance.
The Defense: The Broncos defense absolutely stifled the Chiefs. They held them to 222 total yards and only 14 first downs. Granted, when you're playing a quarterback playing as dreadfully as Matt Cassel, it's not overly difficult to stop the opponent, but the Broncos made it happen in KC today.
Elvis Dumerville: He got his league leading 15th sack, and is now only one sack shy of Simon Fletcher's Denver Bronco record for sacks in a season.
Brandon Marshall: The most exciting Denver Bronco had another great day. Seven catches for 94 yards and a touchdown. After starting the season as a non-factor, Brandon has once again become a focal point for the offense.
Andre' Goodman: Dre' had a great game. He picked up a fumble and ran it back for six as well as making a nice interception of Cassel and getting 4 tackles.
Daniel Graham: The big tight end not only helped with some great blocking opening up the extremely effective run game, he also snagged two catches for 20 yards and a touchdown. His score was one of the more remarkable jobs of misdirection I have ever seen as the Broncos sold the fake to the right so well that the tight end screen to the left allowed Dan to jog to the end zone.
Negatives from the Game:
First quarter defense: Not only did the defense allow the Chiefs to have a 20 yard eight minute drive in the first half, if Bobby Wade hadn't been overthrown slightly by Cassel, he would have had a seventy-six yard touchdown. Champ Bailey made a rare mistake in coverage and allowed Wade to fly down the middle of the field unguarded. Fortunately Wade couldn't reel in the slightly overpowered toss.
Kyle Orton: Kyle actually played a pretty solid game, and he didn't force too much to happen just taking what the defense gave him, but he did have a play early where he tried to force something in the red zone and it turned into an interception in the end zone, and he also was stripped for a lost fumble two times during the game. Despite that, the Broncos won easily and Kyle played okay. However, in a game where the Broncos dominate this heavily, I have to strain pretty hard to find a negative and Kyle gets it for today.
The Broncos are rolling again after their four game slide in the middle of the season. Thumping the Chiefs amounts to taking care of business. The Chiefs are very bad. There isn't enough talent on that team to win without a lot of help, and the Broncos weren't going to give them nearly enough help today to keep it close.
My optimism is rising, but it's still guarded. If the Broncos want to impress me and get me completely excited about their season again, ending the Colts 21 game regular season win streak would be a tremendous place to start. I don't think they get it done next week, and even if they don't the season has still been a lot of fun and holds potential for the playoffs, but a win in Indy would get me nuts about the Broncos chances again like I was after they won in San Diego to go 6-0. As it is, the Broncs are at 8-4, and continue to be a huge surprise in the NFL which is just fine by me. GO BRONCOS!