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ESPN Insiders - Broncos' D Now Matches Offense

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  • ESPN Insiders - Broncos' D Now Matches Offense

    I thought this was a pretty good article on how much improved the Denver D has been. Sadly it's for paying members of the ESPN Insiders subscription, but the link can be found here...

    http://m.espn.go.com/nfl/story?storyId=11718746

    So interesting snippets that I pulled from the article are..."They've (Denver's Defense) forced three-and-out on 32.3 percent of drives, the highest rate in the league."

    "The Broncos have stuffed opposing running backs for a loss or no gain on 24 percent of runs (fourth in the NFL) and only allowed conversions on three of eight short-yardage runs (38 percent, tied for the league lead)."

    "• First-round pick Bradley Roby, Denver's nickelback, is tied for fourth in the league in our Defeats stat with 12 big plays. He's stopped conversions on nine different third or fourth downs with five passes defensed, three tackles after receptions and a tackle of a scrambling Andrew Luck."

    "• T.J. Ward has been involved in 11 run plays (tackles or assists) for an average gain of just 1.1 yards. No other safety with at least five run plays has made the average tackle closer than two yards."
    2014/2015 Adopt-A-Bronco : TJ Ward - GO DUCKS!

  • #2
    Originally posted by ChupaThingy View Post

    "• First-round pick Bradley Roby, Denver's nickelback, is tied for fourth in the league in our Defeats stat with 12 big plays. He's stopped conversions on nine different third or fourth downs with five passes defensed, three tackles after receptions and a tackle of a scrambling Andrew Luck."
    Interesting stuff there...us fans know Roby One Konobi has been money but nice to see others have noticed

    Anyone know any other stats ESPN keeps track of? Their articles are not worth paying money for but if they have some good stats I may pay them some money
    Time to build on the win and grow the team from some solid play higher level of play

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    • #3
      I wonder if they counted robys sack last week as one of their big plays. Wasn't 3rd or 4th down but it sure was a it play!

      If anyone care to post the entire article that would be pretty swell, cp worthy for sure.
      So far:
      FA- Melvin Gordon. Brandon Scherff
      1. Kenneth Murray LB; 2. Shenault WR; 2B. Biadazz Center, 3. OT

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      • #4
        Originally posted by underrated29 View Post
        I wonder if they counted robys sack last week as one of their big plays. Wasn't 3rd or 4th down but it sure was a it play!

        If anyone care to post the entire article that would be pretty swell, cp worthy for sure.

        Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
        The Broncos' front seven has been dependable against the run, while also shutting down pass plays.
        It's tough to argue right now that the Denver Broncos are not the best team in the NFL. Yes, they aren't in first place in their division, but that's simply an artifact of this year's schedule; San Diego is ahead of Denver because San Diego hasn't had its bye week yet. But the Broncos are 4-1 against a much tougher schedule than San Diego has faced, and their only loss came on the road in overtime against the defending champion Seahawks.

        More importantly, the 2014 Denver Broncos are a great all-around team, more well-rounded than last year's AFC champions. Peyton Manning and the Broncos offense have not started off with the record-breaking pace of 2013, but they still stand as the best offense in the league according to the Football Outsiders DVOA ratings. But perhaps more importantly, the Denver defense has been almost as strong. The Broncos currently rank second in the Football Outsiders defensive DVOA ratings, trailing only Detroit. (DVOA, or defense-adjusted value over average, is explained further here.)


        The Denver defense is well-balanced, ranking third against the pass and fourth against the run. And Denver has been the most consistent defense in the NFL, better than average in all five games with the lowest game-to-game variance in the league.

        Perhaps what's most remarkable is that the Broncos are stopping opponents without creating turnovers. The Broncos only have turnovers on 6.5 percent of opposing drives, just 27th in the league. Some of that is because they have yet to recover a fumble on defense -- but then again, it's not much of an issue of luck, as they've only forced two (with a third when Geno Smith dropped the ball on his own but recovered it and threw the ball away). Instead of taking the ball away, the Broncos excel at sending opponents off the field quickly. They've forced three-and-out on 32.3 percent of drives, the highest rate in the league. That's a big improvement from last year, when they were 21st at 22.0 percent of drives.

        The Broncos defense is led by the strength of their front seven, which has been stalwart against the run while also bringing plenty of pressure on pass plays. The Broncos have stuffed opposing running backs for a loss or no gain on 24 percent of runs (fourth in the NFL) and only allowed conversions on three of eight short-yardage runs (38 percent, tied for the league lead). Denver has been above-average against runs in every direction, though strongest against runs to the outside.

        As for the pass rush, the return of Von Miller from last year's ACL injury has been a huge boon for the Broncos. Miller's value to the defense is obvious when you look at the numbers with and without him in 2013. With Miller, Denver had the sixth-best pass defense DVOA in the league, allowing opposing quarterbacks to complete 58 percent of passes for 10.9 yards per completion. Without Miller, Denver had the worst pass defense DVOA in the league, allowing opposing quarterbacks to complete 63 percent of their passes for 13.1 yards per completion.

        With Miller back, and the addition of DeMarcus Ware, the Broncos are bringing more pass pressure than they did a year ago. They currently rank eighth in the NFL in adjusted sack rate. Interestingly, the Broncos haven't been as good a defense as last year when bringing pressure. But they are bringing pressure much more often, and they've also been better than last year on plays on which they don't get pressure.

        YEAR PCT PRESSURE QBR W PRESS RK QBR W/O PRESS RK ADJ SACK RATE RK
        2013 26.5% 1.2 8 81.8 20 6.5% 22
        2014 31.4% 19.4 24 68.1 5 7.3% 8
        Miller is not the only important Broncos defender back from injury, of course. Chris Harris has become one of the league's top cornerbacks. This year, he's been joined in the Denver secondary by three very important newcomers, who each are flashing big stats:

        • Aqib Talib has seven passes defensed and sealed last week's victory with a pick-six off Geno Smith. With both Talib and Harris playing well, the Broncos currently rank fourth in the league in DVOA covering opposing No. 1 receivers, and eighth covering No. 2 receivers.

        • First-round pick Bradley Roby, Denver's nickelback, is tied for fourth in the league in our Defeats stat with 12 big plays. He's stopped conversions on nine different third or fourth downs with five passes defensed, three tackles after receptions and a tackle of a scrambling Andrew Luck.

        • T.J. Ward has been involved in 11 run plays (tackles or assists) for an average gain of just 1.1 yards. No other safety with at least five run plays has made the average tackle closer than two yards.

        There are lots of arguments about whether offense or defense wins championships, but perhaps the best thing to win a championship is balance. When your team is good and balanced, the defense can pick up the slack if the offense has a bad day and vice versa. The Broncos defense couldn't pick up the slack when the Seahawks figured out how to stop Peyton Manning in last year's Super Bowl. But if an opponent in this year's playoffs figures out how to stop Manning, the results could be very different.
        2014/2015 Adopt-A-Bronco : TJ Ward - GO DUCKS!

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