“We got off to a good start as a team,"* Kubiak said post-game. "We got ahead. The turnover right before the half hurt. What it boils down to is (production on) third downs. I think that we were 11 or 12 for 19, so that gives you plays. We didn’t run the ball well, but we ran the ball. It gives you a chance to run the ball. We’ve got to protect our quarterback better. That’s where the (extra) snaps came from. Obviously, defensively, we stopped the run.”
As I wrote immediately following the game, the Broncos did show improvement in several key areas. Namely, three-&-outs, rushing offense, time of possession, rushing defense and takeaways. One area, however, the team continued to slide was in pass protection.
http://www.scout.com/nfl/broncos/story/1719434-get-si-subscription-with-... Unfortunately, Sambrailo didn't stop the gap. He allowed four hurries on just 30 snaps, making it open season on Trevor Siemian, who was sacked six times in the Superdome.
Siemian showed true grit and the will to win, overcoming his offensive line's collective inability to execute. And that counts for something.
But against a team like the Kansas City Chiefs, whom the Broncos draw next on their schedule on November 27, six sacks can grow exponentially into a number too large for Siemian and company to overcome.
Getting back to basics on the O-line will be a focus for the Broncos during the bye. The extra time off will allow the big trenchmen to focus on individual work with their position coach and refine the multitude of flaws in the technique and execution.
This O-line are what they are. We can't expect them to do a 180 11 games into the season. But correcting the little things can go a long way toward shoring up a team weakness, and keep the Broncos competitive down the stretch.
Chad Jensen is the Publisher of Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @ChadNJensen.
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