The Denver Broncos like to keep it close. They're confident taking single-score games down to the wire
The Broncos showed tremendous poise again in Week 8 as they knocked off the San Diego Chargers 27-19 to emerge 6-2 at the halfway point of their season. This game was unique for the Broncos, in that they turned the ball over three times.
Throughout the first half of the season, Denver has done a good job of protecting the football. The team entered Week 8 +5 in the turnover differential.
http://www.scout.com/nfl/broncos/story/1722788-broncos-hold-off-chargers... With an offense still struggling to find an identity and consistency, the Broncos are not set up to overcome a rash of turnovers. But on Sunday, they did.
Quarterback Trevor Siemian gave the ball away twice, but only one of them was his fault. He was strip-sacked on the San Diego 7-yard line and picked off in the fourth quarter. The interception, however, can be laid at the feet of veteran wide receiver Jordan Norwood, who let the ball slip through his hands and into the grasp of Chargers cornerback Casey Hayward, who promptly returned it for a touchdown.
The third turnover is on Devontae Booker's shoulders. The rookie running back lost control of the football, while trying to extend for the pylon.
12 of San Diego's 19 points came off turnovers. The complexion of Sunday's game would have looked very different had the Broncos protected the football better.
Still, the team found a way to win, due in large part to their defense. The defensive unit played inspired football, after defensive coordinator Wade Phillips was rushed to the hospital following a sideline collision with Chargers running back Melvin Gordon.
The Broncos indicate that Phillips is in good spirits and suffered no serious injury.
Leading by eight points late in the game, the Broncos defense forced Philip Rivers and company to turn it over on downs on each of San Diego's last two possessions. The finish was reminiscent of the AFC Championship game played this past January, with the distinction that Denver did not allow San Diego to narrow the score to two points with time running out.
Despite the turnovers, it was a quintessential Broncos win. No matter who the opponent is, the Broncos know that when the chips are down, they have the wherewithal to execute and keep their composure.
How do they consistently pull it off? It comes down to coaching, big-game experience and confidence in one another.
In the face of Denver's relentless defense, the other team will blink. The Broncos proved that yet again in Week 8.
Chad Jensen is the Publisher of Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @ChadNJensen.
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