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A few years removed from their victory in Super Bowl 50, the Denver Broncos are playing at a level that is a far cry from the success to which they have become accustomed. After two seasons with Vance Joseph in charge, Denver was, again, searching for another head coach to right the ship. They chose to go with Vic Fangio, who most recently served as the defensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears. He will be tasked with cleaning up several aspects of the game for his team. Chief among their issues is their play at quarterback. A surprising offseason trade brought in former Super Bowl MVP Joe Flacco from the Baltimore Ravens to take over the starting role for the 2019 season.
Now that the QB spot is fully cemented, the Broncos can continue to make improvements on the rest of their roster. There is no question that the Broncos made moves to solidify the offensive line through free agency. However, that plan did not exactly work out as both Center Matt Paradis and Left Guard Ronald Leary (who came over from the Cowboys) both ended up on the IR. Drafting OT Garrett Bolles in the first round out of Utah last season turned out to be a great move, as he became a starter for this team. The Broncos receiving corps is also depleted with Emmanuel Sanders on IR and Demaryius Thomas traded away to Houston for 4th and 7th round picks in the 2019 draft.
The defensive side of the ball has also experienced some regression following the Super Bowl win as they lost several key starters in free agency. The Broncos defensive leader, linebacker and Super Bowl 50 MVP Von Miller dedicated himself to the idea of keeping the defense playing as dominantly as they have in the past few seasons. The result was a resurgence that saw the Broncos climb the defensive ranks to give up the third fewest yards in the league. Field position, however, was a problem for this team as they were 22nd in the points allowed. Aqib Talib, the force to be reckoned with in the Denver secondary, was traded to the Los Angeles Rams. Undoubtedly a major loss, the Broncos have tried to regroup. They have given up more yards, but less points this season. The organization decided to address the defensive struggles via the draft by selecting Bradley Chubb out of North Carolina State. A powerful defensive end that can get to the quarterback in a hurry, Chubb lines up opposite Von Miller to give the opposition more than they can handle at the line.
John Elway wears a suit and sits in the luxury suites these days for Broncos games, but for 16 years he was the leader of this team on the field, taking snaps under center in his retired number 7. Leading the team to back to back Super Bowl victories following the 1997 and 1998 seasons, Elway is a legend not only in the Denver area, but in football history as he is enshrined in Canton as a Hall of Famer.
Other notable players to have worn the Broncos orange include shutdown cornerback Champ Bailey, explosive wide receiver Rod Smith, prolific tight end Shannon Sharpe, and elite running back Terrell Davis. For more information about the Denver Broncos click here.