Going into this Sunday’s game favored against the Indianapolis Colts, the team and the coaching staff is being cautious and staying mentally focused in order to avoid the upset.
“He’s a lot alike [Cam Newton], other than they do not run a lot of designed runs for him like Carolina does," Kubiak said. "He’s a big physical guy. He is hard to get down in the pocket if you don’t tackle him well. When you get there, he’s going to extend plays and those type of things. What did he throw for yesterday? 400 yards? He’s exceptional. We have our work cut out from that standpoint. He’s a lot like Roethlisberger, a lot like playing that type of guy.”
Linebacker Todd Davis added his insight on the talented Luck.
“He’s a great quarterback and I think we are starting a little rivalry with this team," Davis said. "They beat us two years in a row, so we definitely want this one big. Andrew Luck, like I said, he’s the driving force of that team. We definitely need to corral him and get him to the ground.”
Coach Kubiak made mention of what he saw from the Colts and what schemes, or game plans, that would pose match-up problems for the Broncos on Sunday.
“They have a lot of things that can cause you problems as far as the pressure standpoint," he said. "Chuck [Pagano] is a really good coach and a heck of a defensive coach. [Defensive Coordinator] Ted [Monachino], I was with Ted in Baltimore. Ted was the linebacker coach. I have a lot of respect for Ted Monachino. They got in a shootout yesterday and had the game there at the end, just didn’t get it done. I have a lot of respect for them as a team and obviously this organization has had trouble with them for the last couple of years.”
Kubiak also gave his insight on what he plans to do to keep the team mentally sharp this week, while avoiding the dreaded “letdown” game that can follow a team after such a high profile win.
"I promise we’ll keep plugging," he said. "Just look at the guy that’s pulling the trigger for them. I mean they’re very dangerous in what they do. We don’t have to look any further than the last two times that we played them. Two years ago in the playoff game here and then last year in our game there so we understand what we’re facing and it’s a battle each and every week. This team is a lot different than the one we just played, so we’ve got a lot of adjustment to make. On offense, we’re playing a three-man front. Defensively, we’re going against a little but different scheme so a bunch of changes to make in a short period of time.”
Luck and the Colts will come into Denver this week as six-point underdogs, mainly because of how their defense looked in their most recent loss to Detroit.
It bears mentioning that despite their struggles on the defensive side of the ball as of late, the Colts have fared well in the past against the Broncos during Luck’s time with the team, going 3-1 against Denver and leading the Colts to a Divisional Round playoff at Sports Authority Field at Mile High, ending the Broncos' 2014 campaign.
Denver is the better team and should win the game on Sunday with a recipe that it has become known for; pressuring and smothering the quarterback on defense and making just enough plays on offense to take home the victory.
The wild card between the two teams is Andrew Luck, who in a losing effort against the Lions, looked to be fully recovered from injuries that he sustained at the hands of the Broncos last season, causing him to regress in his expected growth and maturation.
Led by veterans like DeMarcus Ware and Emmanuel Sanders, this current group of Broncos will be seasoned enough to understand that every game in the NFL is a challenge and that the supreme effort of the entire team will be needed to get the job done this Sunday afternoon.
Adam Uribes is an Analyst for Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @auribes37.
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