Week 1 is upon us fans and the scheduling gods will not disappoint. This Sunday the Broncos face off at home against the Seahawks. For many fans such as myself, they are still harboring ill feelings towards Seattle after the beatdown that was Super Bowl 48. Since then, the Broncos haven’t beat the Seahawks, however, this rivalry goes back through the ages and I expect this game to rival the matchups of old.
There are some big changes since both teams faced off 4 years ago. The biggest of them is that Denver has won their third championship and lost Peyton Manning at the helm. Their defense is one of the tops in the league. Seattle has struggled on offense and their defense is but a former husk of what it once was. So what can be expected of this game?
Denver has a huge advantage in this matchup, they are playing at home. That is a huge factor and has played to Seattle’s strength in the past with the “12th Man”. Another X-factor in Denver’s favor is their defense against a Seattle offense that struggled last season. Last season Russell Wilson accounted for 37 of the team’s 38 touchdowns. With an offensive line that has struggled; Denver’s pass rush and run stop should come out guns blazing. However, after watching Wilson’s game clips from last year it’s important for the team not to underestimate his playmaking abilities. His legs can help extend plays and could be a problem. The No-Fly-Zone should match up well against the Seattle receivers and I would expect either Bradley Roby or Chris Harris Jr cover star WR Doug Baldwin. Dynamic duo Bradley Chubb and Von Miller should give Wilson a tough time as well.
Denver’s improved offense will get their first big test with new quarterback Case Keenum under center. Rookies Cortland Sutton, DaeSean Hamilton, and Royce Freeman will look to make a name for themselves against what is still a formidable foe despite stars such as Richard Sherman no longer with Seattle. In the preseason the team faced the Minnesota Vikings, but that was only what I would call practice. Yes, it was last years best defensive team, but the results didn’t matter. This time it’s for real and it’s go-time. Denver needs to start off strong on offense and put up points. This game will come down to who has the better offense. The Broncos need to get a lead early and not let their foot off the gas pedal. I think the better team overall is Denver and as I highlighted the other day, I picked Denver to win this game. If I had to make a prediction, I would say it will be 28-17 Denver. Kickoff is at 2:25 pm MT.
Until next time, keep calm and Bronco On!