By Marc Mandell

Well folks, that could very well be it. With Denver’s loss, and wins coming from the Steelers and Miami, the Denver Broncos season is all but over. That may sound pessimistic, but you can’t sit here and tell me otherwise. Before today they needed to win, now the need to win out and need help. Can they beat Brady next week, and if KC stays the course, will that be a loss as well? At which point the game against Oakland will be irrelevant. This is tart, bitter and disgusting, and as a spoiled rotten fan, I hate it.

Of course that hit on Harris by Douglas was dirty, and I fully expect a fine from the league office on Monday morning. I also support Talib all the way on his response. It lit up Denver’s defense and put the offense of the Titans in a funk, because after that they clammed up a bit, the Tennessee offense. Although the Broncos had too many penalties, we can’t blame the game on the refs. If you blame the refs, it means the team didn’t do enough to win anyway. Now on to the game.

Gravy play of the day was that fake punt. Just me, or can Dixon throw a really pretty ball? Perfectly executed. Watch below…

Siemian’s day reads as such, 35/51 for 334 yards and 1 TD. No picks, no fumbles. Trevor took a beating and stood in there and took it all day, again. If you think that Siemian was the problem this year, or even this week, take your eye off the ball. You’re not seeing straight.

Converting only 3 of 11 3rd downs, and just like last week, going three and out on 5 of your first 6 drives doesn’t lend itself to winning. I didn’t think Denver would win, but I also couldn’t believe it would be as bad as it was. Trevor Siemian, didn’t have a great day, but he wasn’t the problem either. Fowler had a sure fire touchdown drop, ManSand missed two big completions and the running game was, the Denver Broncos running game. That 6th possession that Denver whiffed on, was when Forsett fumbled his first carry as a Bronco. Look familiar Booker? Forsett did make some plays but he didn’t have the legs today. He looked like a couch signing today. My how this team has missed CJ Anderson.

I will say that the Broncos offensive line has gotten better at something this year though, called the watch out block. You know, when they miss a defender and have to yell at Siemian, “Watch out!!”

Liver and onions play today has to be the turnover from the Tight End AJ Derby right at the end of the game. Denver was moving down the field and only needed a field goal to tie. It was the worst play of the day for Denver to me, no doubt.

The reason Denver lost today, is because Tennessee played very well. The were imposing their will on both the offensive and defensive lines. They were far more physical and dominated against Denver in everything. On offense they pushed both the D-line of Denver, and buttons of the players. On offense, they crated lanes for the running game and provided good protection for Mariota. I know that when you look at the numbers, it wasn’t staggering, as Murray went for 92 yards and a TD. Henry only had 45 yards. It was the physical and mental destruction from the O-line that had it’s effect. The Titans were able to possess the ball, and convert on 3rd down. Making the job of the Titans defense that much easier. If you’re never on the field the freshness is boundless.

When Denver did finally figure it out, it was in the final 6 minutes of the 4th quarter. Too little to late. A team can’t win the game in the first quarter, but they can sure lose it. When you wait until literally the last minute to win a game every week, the odds are never in your favor. I’m not even kidding, Denver scored all 10 points in the final minutes of the game! You can’t play like that every week an expect to win many games! The Denver defense has played more minutes in the last two weeks, than any other team in the league, and the offense can’t, it’s not even getting out of their own way, it’s worse than that, they can’t even stay on the road. Just swangin’ an bangin’. Nothing to build on. At no point has this team clicked all the way, with the offense being the offender far far more often than not.

I couldn’t even finish scouting them today. It became depressing. Can’t run, a 55% Siemian is still better than a 100% Lynch. Trevor was visibly limping for a lot of the second half today, and yet still better than the rookie that Denver drafted back in late April. Most of this draft class has been useless in fact, but I’ll get more into that later on though, once we find out exactly when Denver will be eliminated from the playoffs, as they have been kicked out once more from the playoff picture.

Mariota had a bad day throwing, but they still won the game. Marcus went 6/20 for only 88 yards. Not his usual 200 yards throwing and 100 yards rushing, but again, they won the game. By the second half he did look timid and reserved, as Denver defense still has the knack for getting to the QB, or at the very least, getting in his head. The biggest bummer here is that Denver won’t be able to capitalize on it this year.

As Broncos fans, we mustn’t be so spoiled. I know this isn’t the time of year to make such a statement, but I feel a little reminder is good for all of us. Even if Denver misses the playoffs, even if they don’t win another game this year, I will always be a fan, and always support them.

You can bet your bottom dollar I will be back next week with coverage of New England vs Denver. What would be ironic, is if the Broncos won that game. But I believe they can do just that. Tune in to find out how folks.

Thanks for reading ya’ll and I will see you next week.