The Denver Broncos have been turning some heads the first few weeks. Denver was expected to be one of the best offenses coming into the season, but no one expected them to be quite this good. The team is leading the league in scoring, averaging 10 points more than anybody else at 42.3 points per game.
With the offense on pace to break all kinds of records, there is one facet of the Denver Broncos that is sorely getting overlooked. The Denver Broncos run game has been absolutely extraordinary to this point.
In the three games, their opponents have rushed for totals of 58, 23 and 49 yards. Denver's opponents are averaging 43.3 yards per game and 2.33 yards per carry. The second closest team averages 20 yards more per game and nearly half a yard more per carry. Running backs have ran the ball for 94 yards on 53 carries against the Broncos and averaged a meager 1.8 yards per attempt.
It hasn't been just one person that is playing well for the Denver Broncos defense, but an accumulation rather. Defensive tackles Terrance Knighton and Kevin Vickerson have been huge controlling the line. Defensive ends Robert Ayers and Derek Wolfe have been extremely stingy. All three speedy linebackers Nate Irving, Danny Trevathan and Wesley Woodyard have been all over the field.
Of course, Denver's offense should be given a little credit for the defense's success against the run too. it's a little easier to stop the run when you have quarterback Peyton Manning leading the offense to score in the 30s-40s regularly. Opposing teams cannot run the ball effectively when they're down two scores in the second half. Also, Denver's defense has been able to stay much more fresh with Denver's offense controlling the clock.
Though the Denver Broncos had a nice test with the Oakland Raiders' number one rushing game coming into the game, they most likely won't have a better test than with the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday. The Eagles currently lead the NFL in every rushing category other than rushing touchdowns. They've rushed the ball 94 times for 627 yards, averaging 6.6 yards per carry.
Running back LeSean McCoy has been a huge part of the early success the Eagles have had on the ground. McCoy has over two-thirds of the Eagles' rushing yards at 395 and has made every defense he's faced looked foolish. McCoy is one of the fastest in the game and he's in a category of his own with some of his moves. He's easily one of the top backs and should not be taken lightly.
Quarterback Michael Vick is also someone teams will need to keep a close eye on. Vick only averages 6 rushing attempts per game, but he's averaging a whooping 10.7 yards per carry when he decides to tuck the ball and run. He is no slouch tossing the ball either.
If the Denver Broncos can continue to oppose their will and hold opposing offenses to under 100 yards rushing, there should be little skepticism on the legitimacy. However, if the Eagles' run game can exploit Denver's defense, Denver probably isn't as good as advertised. The Broncos' defense averages just over 43 yards per game and the Eagles' offense averages just under 210 yards per game, so someone will have to break. Sunday will tell us who that will be.
Quarterback Peyton Manning has been flirting with or setting records left and right after a 37-21 victory over the hated Oakland Raiders.
Manning was phenomenal for a third straight game on Monday. He finished with a stat line of 32-37 for 374 yards and 3 touchdowns. He also set a personal best in completion percentage with 86.5% for a single game. What's even crazier is the fact that Manning had two perfectly thrown balls dropped and this was the first game with new LT Chris Clark rather than All-Pro LT Ryan Clady.
It wasn't just personal records Manning set last night. With his 3rd touchdown of the first half, he became the first quarterback in NFL history to throw for 12 touchdowns in the first three games of the season. Even more remarkable is the fact that Manning hasn't thrown an interception at all this season. The last quarterback to throw 12 touchdowns without an interception was Philadelphia QB Michael Vick in 2010. It would take Vick eight games to accomplish what Manning has been able to do in just three.
Manning has the Denver Broncos' offense clicking at a historic level. During the three-game span, the Denver Broncos have scored 127 total points. This mark tied the 1966 Dallas Cowboys for the second most points scored through three games and was just 6 points shy from breaking the NFL record of 132 points, which is held by the 1968 Dallas Cowboys.
As it stands now, Peyton Manning has completed 89/122 passes for 1,143 yards, 12 touchdowns, no interceptions and a passer rating of 134.7. He currently leads all of the NFL major passing categories while being on pace for 6,096 passing yards and 64 touchdowns.
Though it's unlikely he'll play quite to that level, there's a strong possibility he can break the single season record for most yards and most touchdowns in a year to cement the greatest regular season performance in NFL history. The current holder of the most yards in a season belongs to QB Drew Brees, who threw for 5,476 yards for the New Orleans Saints in 2011. QB Tom Brady owns the record for most touchdowns in a season when he threw for 50 for the New England Patriots in 2007. For Manning to break both records, he would need to average 333 yards passing and just under 3 touchdowns thrown for the remaining thirteen games.
Manning has a great opportunity to close the gap on Brady and Brees while setting some more records through four games on Sunday when the Philadelphia Eagles come to town. The Eagles are a top offense in the NFL, but their defense is also near the bottom statistically. That is the perfect recipe for another ridiculously great performance by Manning.
The list of bad things just seemed to get worse and worse for linebacker Von Miller. It was reported earlier by Susan Schroeder, a spokeswoman for the Orange County District Attorney's Office verified to the Denver Post that the troubled Denver Broncos linebacker has an open warrant for his arrest for the whole state of California.
There's actually good news for Von Miller this time. It appears those reports are absolutely false. CBS' Vic Lombardi is reporting that both the district attorney and county clerk confirmed to him that there is in fact no bench warrant for Miller.
ESPN's Josina Anderson was the first to break the dispute between the warrant. She broke the statement made by Miller's attorney Mark Schamel. Here is the full statement here:
"Von Miller is a wonderful young man who was stopped 18 months ago for speeding on a highway. He was ticketed for driving 10 miles per hour over the posted speed limit. There is nothing more to it than that. The speeding ticket is a simple infraction for which arrest is not authorized. This is not a criminal case and we have confirmed that there is no warrant for his arrest. This is much ado about nothing and it should be cleared up tomorrow morning."
It appears Miller dodged a bullet on this one. Though it looks to be another speeding ticket from someone who can't keep his foot off the pedal, it could've been much worse if Miller really did have a warrant. Miller is already serving a six game suspension handed down by the NFL because he failed a drug test in 2011 and then failed multiple urine samples according to the league in 2012. In addition. Miller has already been arrested for an open warrant just a month ago in Colorado for missing a court date upon a tracking offense. To add icing on the cake, Miller was pulled over just last week for speeding while driving without a license. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will not need much convincing to suspend Von further if he feels Miller is damaging the NFL product.
Miller is a very likable guy and a once in a generation talent. However, there's no quick fix for Miller to build all this goodwill lost during the last few months. Miller still has the chance to salvage what could be a Hall of Fame career, but he needs to take control of his life. For his sake and the Bronocs sake, let's hope he figures it out.