Broncos News Blogs - Thursday, Dec. 8

The Denver Broncos will not see the Baltimore Ravens' Ray Lewis on Sunday. Lewis underwent season-ending surgery on his torn right hamstring yesterday. Read more in today's news reports.

Down to the final four - Denver Post - Bill Williamson
12/08/2005 - OK, so the Broncos aren't walking around their locker room this week with four digits in the air as a reminder the fourth quarter of the season belongs to them. But that's not far off. The team is verbalizing the sentiment. Minutes after the 31-27 loss at Kansas City on Sunday, Denver safety and defensive captain John Lynch said it is now the fourth quarter and the margin for error is slim. The final four games can make or break the season.

Pressure falls on D-line - Denver Post - Thomas George
12/08/2005 - The push and pull over which identity wins big in the NFL - offense or defense - is spiraling toward another intriguing climax. We saw the Rams win it all in 2000 with elegant offense, plus a memorable Mike Jones title-saving tackle. The Ravens reached the top the following year with nasty defense. The Bucs won in 2003 with big-play defense. In each of its three championship seasons New England rode quarterback Tom Brady's charming play and a mulish defense that twice in the playoffs made the fast-track Colts look helpless. All NFL coaches preach that balance is preferred. Balance, plus efficient special teams. The reality is NFL teams are tagged for what they do best, whether that is offense or defense.

Sacking quarterback not strength of defense - Denver Post - Mike Klis
12/08/2005 - In baseball, hitters cling to the notion that succeeding three out of 10 times is all-star caliber. In football, defensive linemen would say hitting a baseball is simple next to sacking the quarterback. "Figure that your top sack leader will have maybe 16 sacks," Broncos defensive end Ebenezer Ekuban said. "That's one a game. You can have 400-plus pass rushes a year. So that's a very low percentage even for those who are great at it."

Broncos seeking a reversal - Rocky Mountain News - Lee Rasizer
December 8, 2005 - It's possible the Baltimore Ravens have the Denver Broncos' number. But it's a certainty the Ravens have the numbers in the series - and in lopsided fashion. The teams have played every year this decade except 2004. And no NFL team has been a more consistent thorn in Mike Shanahan's side than the Ravens, who visit Invesco Field at Mile High on Sunday (2:15 p.m., CBS 4). The Broncos have lost all four of their games against the Ravens since 2000 by an average of two touchdowns, with three of those defeats in Baltimore, including one in the playoffs. The Broncos seemingly have been beaten by a new quarterback each time - Kyle Boller, Elvis Grbac, Chris Redman and Trent Dilfer - and consistently beaten down by a stout Ravens defense that has allowed a combined 45 points. Broncos kicker Jason Elam has accounted for nearly half that scoring output, on six field goals and three extra points. Yet, even the kicking game has gone awry at times.

Bloom works out for combine as Olympics loom - Rocky Mountain News - Jeff Legwold
December 8, 2005 - Former University of Colorado kick returner and Olympic skier Jeremy Bloom has dipped into the Denver Broncos' past in hopes of helping his football future. On what he called the "last day" he could dedicate to football drills before the moguls freestyle World Cup ski season and the Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy, Bloom was in the South Suburban Sports Complex on Wednesday just after the Broncos finished practicing there. Bloom worked on some receiving drills with former Broncos receiver Ed McCaffrey, and former Colorado School of Mines quarterback Chad Friehauf threw them the ball. Friehauf spent training camp this year with the Broncos before being released.

Neuheisel gains some perspective - Daily Camera - Ryan Thorburn
December 8, 2005 — Rick Neuheisel is looking forward to coming back to Colorado to coach football. The Buffs? Sure, the ex-CU head coach is aware of the turmoil surrounding the program he once led to back-to-back 10-2 seasons, but for the time being Neuheisel is focused on the Broncos in his position as Baltimore's quarterbacks coach. The irony of Neuheisel's return — he will be on the visitors' sideline this Sunday when Denver hosts the Ravens at Invesco Field — is that it will come only days after the man who replaced him at CU, Gary Barnett, appears to be on his way out.

Broncos' Bell would rather not share carries - Daily Camera - Ryan Thorburn
December 8, 2005 — Mike Anderson is willing to share. Ron Dayne is willing to share. Tatum Bell? Well, the second year running back from Oklahoma State has said he would rather be in the spotlight getting most of the carries in the backfield for the Denver Broncos. Of course, during last Sunday's 31-27 loss at Kansas City, Bell led the team with 46 yards rushing on only five attempts (9.2 per). Anderson, the starter, had 37 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries (2.8 per). Dayne, who got into the rotation due to Bell's chest injury before the Dallas game, had 26 yards on eight carries (3.3 per).

All-Around Accountability - - Andrew Mason
Thursday, December 8, 2005 - Larry Coyer didn't want to play the blame game this week -- unless it was about blaming himself. So when the topic of the Broncos' defensive breakdowns in the 31-27 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs arose, he was quick to defend his defenders. The occasional mixups and the secondary miscommunication that led to a Dante Hall touchdown -- that and more, Coyer wanted laid at his feet, and not those of his players. "The first thing you attribute it to is coaching, any time there's mental errors -- and that's the truth," Coyer said. "You go into a big ballgame, you know there's going to be a lot of things. Our players do not want to make mental errors. I've said that 100 (times). So it always comes back to coaching, and that comes back to me." For Coyer, it's an issue of responsibility. When things happen on defense, the proverbial buck stops at his desk.

Broncos' remaining schedule soft - Longmont Daily Times-Call- Pat Graham
12/7/2005 — A local caller was patched through to the host of a Kansas City sports talk show late Monday afternoon. "What do you think of Kansas State's new football coach?" the host said of the hiring of Ron Prince. The caller went silent. "I don't want to talk about that," the caller said in a disgusted voice. "What then?" the host answered. "The Chiefs. The Chiefs are back," the caller responded. "They're more than back, they're playing great. I think we can win the West. I think we can challenge the Colts. I think we can go all the way." Whoa, slow down, partner. That's quite a statement to make on the airwaves. Let's not put the apple cart in front of the horse just yet.

Broncos May Ditch Three-Back Attack -
Wed Dec 7 - The Denver Broncos' three-headed running attack surfaced a week ago in a 31-27 loss to Kansas City. The early reviews were as lukewarm as the collective results of Mike Anderson, Tatum Bell and Ron Dayne. "It worked out OK," Dayne said Wednesday. "Mike was designed to get most of the work and Tatum to get his." Anderson contributed a 1-yard touchdown run and 46 yards on 13 carries, though he also took a 66-yard screen pass for a score. Bell ran five times for 46 yards and Dayne had eight carries for 26 yards. "For me, it is no different than the way I have been used throughout the season," Dayne said. "I'm aware I have to stay ready. We'll have to wait and see." Bell was the focal point.

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