A lot has been vocalized this week about Mike Shanahan’s return to Denver, but behind the nostalgia of 14 years of success is a game between a Denver Broncos team looking to keep pace with the undefeated Kansas City Chiefs and a Washington Redskins squad looking to get back in the hunt.
Featuring a quarterback duel between two polar opposites in style of play, defenses that are looking to stop the bleeding and a special teams battle that on paper heavily favors the Broncos, Broncos-Redskins is the matchup of Sunday afternoon.
Against an elite opponent the Redskins would secure more than just a notch in the win column of Sunday if they pull off the upset.
There’s the old cliché that sports are 90 percent mental, but a win over a Peyton Manning led team that at one point looked destined to break about 15 offensive records, confidence would literally be a mile high.
Anyway, beyond hammering down more boring sayings here is this week’s storyline roundup of what Denver and national media are following:
–Again a lot of hubbub has been made about Shanahan’s return and everyone hopefully understands why . It’d be like (hypothetically of course) Joe Gibbs leaving for an AFC team and then returning later on the opposite sideline. Now five seasons removed from the Shanahan Era, USA Today’s Lindsey Jones writes about how much the organization has changed.
–Manning has been blessed with a myriad of weapons at his disposal. While Julian Thomas and his running backs are options, it’s his wide receiver trio of Wes Welker, Eric Decker and DeMaryius Thomas that he looks to first. Together the threesome could rewrite league history.
–While sacking Manning is rarer than snow in October, the chances of the phenomenon have increased recently with offensive line issues, mainly injuries. Shuffling once again, Denver could unravel another new combo on Sunday.
–The Broncos offense is good—really, really good, great, amazing etc. So far this season they have scored 30 points in all seven contents and are on pace with the 2007 New England Patriots for most points scored in a season. Having said that, instead of trying to stump them with tricky schemes defenses are having success with basic packages.
–Back when Sisqo and N’Sync were the best options for the portable cassette player, London Fletcher and Peyton Manning were two youngsters just trying to prove that they could contribute as rookies. Fast forward 15 years later and it’s the matchup to watch on Sunday.
–I once caught Redskins lead writer Brian Tinsman searching eBay for a mechanical bronco to put in his offense. After scaring him he finished his four keys to the game vs. the Broncos. Here they are.
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