This morning I asked my trusty Magic Eight Ball if the Broncos were going to have a good season in 2005-2006. My Magic Eight Ball responded with "outlook good." For once, I agree with it. The season is barely over, and the NFL draft is still a couple of months away, yet there is room for optimism for the upcoming season for the Broncos. There are many reasons Bronco fans should be making plans to watch their team next February in Detroit.
The first of those reasons is Jake Plummer. Plummer may have thrown for twenty interceptions last year, but was anyone paying attention to what he did right? Plummer threw for a career-high twenty-seven touchdowns and 4,089 yards, which by the way is the equivalent to just over two miles. The 4,089 yards Plummer threw for is also a new Bronco record. Plummer also proved that he has an incredible arm. How many times did we see Plummer launch the football perfectly into a place where only Ashley Lelie would catch it? Too many to count. And every time he did it, it was very exciting. Plummer, like it or not, is the quarterback who will lead the Broncos to the Superbowl and win it.
The Broncos offense was stirring to watch last season, the second reason the Broncos are on the path to Detroit. Optimism should be high for the Broncos offense in 2005-2006. Ashley Lelie had a breakout season. He had his first 1000-yard season and led the league with 20.1 yards per catch. Every single touchdown Lelie scored last season was over thirty yards. Who needs Manning to Harrison when the Broncos have Plummer to Lelie? The Plummer to Lelie duo became one of the more thrilling quarterback wide receiver duos in the league.
While he may not be Shannon Sharpe, then again who is? Jeb Putzier definitely held his own last season as one of a trio of tight-ends who played well for the Broncos last season. Putzier had a career-high 572 yards receiving and two touchdowns. Patrick Hape and Dwayne Carswell also contributed to the Bronco offense with four and one touchdowns respectively.
How about that running game? The Broncos running game may be the eighth Wonder of the World. The Broncos once again surprised everyone else in the league by having a thousand yard rusher when no one thought it possible- there must be something in the water. The Broncos will be in good shape whether Reuben Droughns comes back or not. When Rookie Tatum Bell was not injured he showed signs of becoming a great running back in the league. Next year the Broncos will get Quentin Griffin and Mike Anderson back from season ending injuries.
Now for the other side of the ball. The defense had its problems last year, but there will be a lot to look forward to in the 2005-2006 season. D.J. Williams had an outstanding rookie year. Williams came in second behind Miami Hurricane Teammate Jonathan Vilma as Defensive Rookie of the Year. Williams led the team in Tackles with 114 and gave the Broncos another threat at linebacker. Williams can only get better. Champ Bailey and John Lynch will once again give the Broncos a serious threat in the secondary. Both Bailey and Lynch are headed for the pro-bowl and are the only members of the team to do so. Bailey and Lynch's resume speak for themselves. The best part about next season's defense in four words: Trevor Pryce is back.
So Bronco fans, be sure to pack your bags for Detroit next February. My magic eight ball said "it is decidedly so."
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