During the latter stages of Sunday’s game between the Denver Broncos and Buffalo Bills, CBS analyst and former NFL quarterback Rich Gannon demonstrated in no uncertain terms why he gets paid the big bucks.
With his chest out and a look on his face like he had just solved the Da Vinci Code, Gannon proudly asserted - and I am paraphrasing - that the Denver defense was really good, but the Denver offense simply wasn’t carrying its weight.
Wow, thanks for that powerful message, Rich. That’s a real drop-the-microphone moment, not to mention an astute observation of the painfully obvious.
Had it not been for those pearls of wisdom from Gannon, none of us would have ever noticed that the Broncos have a difficult time scoring, or even managing first downs. Heck, we thought 17 points per game was the new NFL normal.
Now that Gannon has enlightened us to the fact that our offense is underperforming, we can actually indulge in high-minded theoretical discussions about how to solve this problem that has plagued us for the previous four seasons.
Such discussions might not actually lead to a better offense, but they might make us all feel better.
Let’s start at quarterback, shall we? So now that we know Brandon Allen doesn’t walk on water, let’s let him sink back into a backup role. And since we snagged Drew Lock early in the second round of the 2019 draft, let’s have a look at him before the end of the season – or before hell freezes over.
Novel idea! Let’s evaluate our new quarterback?
If Lock proves to be our savior, then we all live happily ever after. If not, then at least we are armed with that information headed into this year’s draft. By the way, if the draft occurred today, the Broncos would pick fifth among the 32 NFL teams. Losing has its advantages.
My next move, after sweeping up one of the finest young quarterbacks the collegiate ranks have to offer, would be to find a replacement for Garett Bolles, our offensive tackle who has committed 13 holding penalties this season. A high-caliber complement to Dalton Risner, whom the Broncos selected just one pick after obtaining Lock, would be an enormous step in the right direction.
Call me crazy, but I would like to see us upgrade our receiving core. Yes, Courtland Sutton is dynamic. Yes, he has rare athleticism and size for a wide receiver. But I think we need additional depth at the position and would love to see another game-changing pass-catcher in this offense.
A good bet is that Joe Flacco, Lock, or any other future Broncos quarterback would also like to have another talented receiver to target – especially considering the recent departure of Emmanuel Sanders.
Finally, with no disrespect intended to Phillip Lindsay, a little more depth at running back couldn’t hurt. If Lindsay were to suffer an injury, we would be without any real game-breakers at that position. In a perfect world, we would draft a bell cow and make Lindsay a third-down back. At 170 pounds, Lindsay’s durability has to be a legitimate concern.
Just to add icing on top of new offense, any free agent moves or late-round draft picks should also be centered around adding additional depth to our offensive line. Football games, as they say, are won and lost in the trenches. So while we are upgrading, let’s find some more muscle for those trenches.
I welcome your thoughts. There is plenty of room for improvement on the offensive side of the ball. We know that’s the case, thanks to Rich Gannon.