Preseason Jitters

Players and fans headed out to Invesco at Mile High for the preseason home opener with high expectations, but left apprehensive and somber. The Broncos' performance during the first quarter left the fans cheering and craving more previews for this upcoming season.

During the first quarter, the Broncos played solid defense and the offense looked connected, especially when Jake Plummer completed a 55-yard touchdown pass to Ashley Lelie. But as the time ticked on through the second quarter, the excitement came to an abrupt halt as many had flashbacks from a past not long forgotten.

The Broncos' offense and defense became extremely sloppy in the second quarter, as the Colts scored two touchdowns. The Broncos answered back with only a field goal. This was the last time the Broncos would add any points to the board until the fourth quarter. This began the downward spiral for the Broncos.

In the beginning of third quarter the ball was knocked loose from Mike Anderson and recovered by Colts linebacker Marcus Washington. This turnover ended up giving the Colts a 21-13 lead, as the Colts proceeded down field and made another touchdown. Plummer then threw an interception to end his first appearance at Invesco.

To introduce the fourth quarter, Steve Beuelein lead his team downfield 43 yards in 4:40 to the 42-yard line to set-up another opportunity for Jason Elam to score another field goal. Elam was successful, bringing the score to 21-16. Danny Kanell came in and immediately threw an interception, which within two plays led to another touchdown for the Colts. The Colts pressed ahead another 7 points, making the score 28-16. Danny Kanell, struggling to make a positive appearance, recovered from his interception and led his team downfield to score their final touchdown. The Colts ended the game by letting the clock run out and came out with a victory with the final score 28-23.

The Broncos walked off the field after their third preseason game with a total of 12 penalties, four fumbles, and two interceptions.

Shannon Sharpe summed it up as he said, "We looked bad and the bad thing is we were on national television. So now everyone is thinking this is the same team from last year making the same mistakes and that is disappointing."

"We moved the ball well, but we keep finding a way to keep shooting our self in the foot," quarterback Jake Plummer said. "Maybe that is a little lack of concentration by some guys since it is the preseason. That is what we are hoping, but we still have to take it like a real game, cause that is the only way we are going to get better and improve."

Although many remain skeptical and bitter from years past, this is still preseason and preseason performance doesn't always predict how a team will succeed during the regular season. The Broncos still have time to evaluate and improve, but Broncos fans will have to remain in limbo until the regular season starts to find out if the team has really improved since last season.

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