The O'Reilly Report

Broncos Update contributor Dan O'Reilly thinks that the Dolphins are a team that the Broncos just have had trouble beating and is at a bit of a loss as to how to rate their 20-17 win today. Read his comments in this week's edition of "The O'Reilly Report."

I'm at a bit of loss as to exactly how to rate this game. On the one hand, the Broncos (at least on paper) should have blown the Dolphins out. On the other, every team has an opponent who they just plain have trouble beating, no matter what the relative strengths of each team may be. For Shanahan & the Broncos, that team is the Dolphins. I'm just not sure what this tight win means for the next three weeks against Kansas City, Tennessee and Indy.

This was a pretty solid game defensively, and for the first time in several weeks, the Broncos did a MUCH better job in the field position department. The offense looked very good at times, and at other times, they looked just plain inept.

Offense: C

Again, way too many turnovers. And again, another goal-line interception by quarterback Jake Plummer. And while there may have been room for arguments as to the fault last week, there were none this week. While it's a stretch to say that Plummer could have cost the Broncos the game, his interceptions didn't help much lot either.

On the bright side, Tatum Bell showed some great flashes. He has the acceleration that Portis had, but if memory serves, he's a bigger back so he can deal out the punishment if he needs to. It's pretty unnecessary to comment on him tripping over his feet trying to run the ball in, and it's unnecessary to comment on his stone hands in the end zone. Both speak for themselves, and we've not seen enough from him to say that's an emerging pattern and a need for concern.

Again, the wide receiver's really came through when they were needed. Ashley Lelie and Rod Smith have become a great tandem, and Darius Watts showed some good hands again. The tight end's seemed to be pretty much absent in this game again. And kudos to Kyle Johnson, he's turning out to be a pretty good fullback.

Defense: B+

At times, they made quarterback A.J. Feeley look like an all-star player. But there were a couple of times where they made some really timely stops forcing some three-and-outs. Big player again was linebacker B.J. Williams, and cornerback Champ Bailey was back to being a shut-down guy as he should have been all along.

Special Teams: B

Nothing special, nothing really bad, either. It's obvious punter Jason Baker was brought in to send a message, not as a long-term solution.

Coaching: A-

I have to give this one to Shanahan and his coaches. As I said before, the 'Fins are a team that have Shanahan's number, and he at least came out with enough moxy to beat them today.

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