Schon: Game Notes Broncos - Chargers

The Broncos pick up a big AFC West win against the Chargers and improve their record to 6-0.

As a Broncos fan wouldn't you just love to see Philip Rivers spend the majority of the evening on his back? And I mean that in the most respectful of terms...

Nice little skirmish before the game - are these guys for real? Guess I'd be jacked to if I had a running game equivalent to a mediocre high school. The thing you got to look out for is the fact the Chargers are in desperation mode – and for a team that lives that close to Tijuanna, it could be dangerous.

Broncos are back to the ugly uni's but at least they're not as ugly as last week… kickoff is set – lets bust it out…

1st Quarter
Chargers take the kick and roll out with a very impressive three and out – Rivers is talking trash early – that might be a good sign.

KO's playing it tight – no mistakes – hits Marshal on a short gainer for the first. Back to the air but Orton gets tagged – Chargers are bringing the heat – first sack of the night. Orton goes back to the air but a quick toss ot Buckhalter comes up a yard short and it's Kern in for the punt. Both teams look a little tight… SD gets flagged for holding on the kick and the ball is marched back to the Chargers 12-yard line.

/Nice toss to Floyd for a huge 18-yard gain – back to the air – incomplete to Jackson with Champ Bailey all over him. LT for a couple brings up 3rd and 9… Threads it to Floyd to beat the blitz and picks up 20…. Chargers are rolling – Rivers on a shovel pass to LT pick up more real estate and the Broncos are backpedaling. 76-yards so far on this drive… Dawkins comes off the field for trainers to take a look at his leg…

SD's already down to the Broncos four and it's LT for a loss of one… back to LT for a few brings up 3rd and 2 to go… Sproles for a loss of two and the Chargers can't push it across – LT's po'd… gotta love the Broncos defensive stand… SD lights the board with three.

It's a hamstring for Dawkins…return is questionable - ouch.

Did I tell you Eddie Royal's my new best friend – dude breaks it big on the kick – 93-yards later the Broncos light the board with a quick seven – pretty much ‘in your face' response to Rivers and Co.

Ok, so I spoke too soon....

Gotta hand it to Rivers – dude may be a complete punk but he's picking apart McD's defensive backfield – eight plays, 74-yard drive with a short toss to Jackson for seven… I guess it's a reverse facial on Denver's side… Chargers on top 10-7 as the first comes to a close.

2nd Quarter
SD may be in desperation mode but it's Orton that's steadily moving the Broncos downtown. Nice mix of the run and pass – huge pick up to Gafney moves it into Chargers territory. Moreno on the ground moves it down inside the twenty… Movement on the offensive line brings it back – Orton to Scheffler get the penalty yards back and it's third and 8from the 17… Orton on the scramble – incomplete to Marshall – flags fly – Marshall kicks the ball wants a pass interference call – zebras huddle up…

It's interference on SD but Marshall gets tagged for kicking the ball – penalties offset and it's third and eight again… Orton to Royal falls incomplete and it's Prater (gulp) to the rescue – splits the uprights and the Broncos tie it at 10-10… Back to Rivers and Co.

Broncos "D" tightens it up – despite some decent field position Chargers go three and out and surprisingly Rivers is pretty quiet… it's Royal back for the punt.

GOODBYE… Royal busts his second of the night – 71-yard punt return and the Broncos are back on top 17-10… UNBELIEVABLE – 93-yard kick return topped off with a 71-yard punt… dude should open up his own car dealership in town – he's that good.

Punky Brewsters' coming back strong – moves it inside Broncos territory where Keading sails it straight down the middle from 44-yards out and the Chargers narrow the gap 17-13 at the 2:19 mark of the second quarter.

Broncos field it at their own 25 – Moreno up the middle for five brings up the two-minute warning.

Orton's two-minute offense comes up lame – Kern's put for the punt…and it's Sproles to the house… You knew it had to happen sooner or later – why in the world Kerns would even send it his way is beyond me… 77-yards and he dances untouched into the end zone. Huge mistake by the Broncos Special Teams…Chargers on top 20-17 thanks to a total mind warp on Denver…

Orton and Co. give it their best shot – slow, steady, down the field – moves it to the SD 39 – last gap effort – Prater (gulp) for the field goal… wide right – first half comes to a close – SD in charge 20-17…

Kind of like dancing with an ugly girl... it may be fun but it really doesn't accomplish much... Still wondering who in their right mind would kick it to Darren Sproles and then completely open up the gap.... I think my spleen hurts.

3rd Quarter
Broncos roll out their first drive of the second half and it's an exercise in futility – move it out to the 50 and are forced to punt – at least Kern wises up and sends it to the end zone… no possible return – SD takes it at their own 20… Look out Dawkins is back from his hamstring – that should help.

Flags are going against Denver – wonder why….love the fact the talking heads point out Denver's ability to hold opponents scoreless in the second half. Not that it matters tonight. Punky's got ‘em moving near midfield…

Keading nails it again – so much for not scoring in the second half… Chargers maintain the lead 23-17.

Ok…. Orton opens it up – quick toss to Marshall for another first. Back to Scheffler picks up a few. Buckhalter on the ground picks up a first and moves it out to the 43. Orton to Scheffler moves it to the 34. Back to Moreno, who gets gang tackled for a pick up of one. Inside the 30 – Orton to Marshall gains nine and Denver's inside the twenty. Back to the air – it's Orton to Scheffler in the end zone – Broncos touchdown… Prater nails the kick and the Broncos are back on top 24-23… fabulous game on the Big Stage…

Punky Brewster's back – running game is actually going good – LT's starting to look like the LT of old… Chargers are moving near midfield. This has got to be San Diego's best running game this season. Broncos D tightens it and Elvis pulls out the stop for no gain – 3rd and 3 – Rivers gets nailed and fumbles the ball – Dumervil from the backside for his 9th sack – Broncos take possession at midfield… Gotta love it…

Broncos sputter and on 3rd and 10 Orton's forced to scramble – comes up short but SD's tagged with defensive holding – Broncos get new life with a first down. Ball is inside the 40 – Orton to Marshall close to the first…2nd and one – Moreno stopped behind the line of scrimmage. And the third quarter comes to a close…

4th Quarter
It's Orton to Marshall for the first – how can you not love this one… quick shot of Rivers on the sideline – looks completely constipated – I can understand…. Orton to Marshall comes up incomplete – Prater from 29 – puts Denver on top 27-23. Pretty sure I need a drink at this point…

Chargers take the kick and move it out to the 25 – here come Punky… Screen to LT – Hagen's got it covered – loss of four. Rivers to Jackson – in-com-plete… 3rd and 14 – Dumervil off the corner – sack #10 for Elvis – OUTSTANDING "D" to close the Charger's drive. Broncos field it inside the 30.

Buckhalter across the 45 – Chargers LB Burnett is down on the field – Broncos near midfield – Buckhalter for six – 2nd and four – on the groud for Buckhalter – FUMBLE – Ben Hamilton recovers for Denver – dodge a bullet – McD takes a time out… time to settle down…Moreno dives for the first – goal line dive produces – give it up for the rookie and it's a Denver first down. Back to Moreno for a few… One more to Moreno and it still comes up short. 3rd and three – incomplete to Royal and the Broncos are forced to punt…. Now I'm scared…

Kerns send it through the end zone - here comes Punky – Deep drop and Elvis comes through for the sack – loss of 11 – Rivers to Jackson picks up a bunch – 3rd and 4 – goes downfield for Jackson – Chargers catch a break – Broncos flagged for pass interference moves it all the way ot to the 40… HUGE break for SD – LT on the ground for maybe one… 2nd and 8 fall in-com-plete… 3rd and 8 – Rivers on the sideline – in-com-plete – no choise – they've got to go for it – In-com-plete to Floyd – Champ and DJ Williams bust it up…. Broncos ball just short of the 40 with just over five minutes to go…

Here come Orton – Moreno for a couple then comes back and hits Scheffler for a HUGE 52-yarder – fabulous pick up off the catch – inside the ten – Moreno for no gain as the clock wind down to 4:00. Orton behind center back to Moreno for a few – 3rd and goal and Orton's out of the shotgun – to Stokley – rolls in for the TD – Chargers challenge… Nice touch playing Tom Petty's "The Waiting" - Good Luck.

Ruling on the field stands - Broncos touchdown... eleven-point Broncos lead 34-23.

Broncos haven't given up any fourth quarter points the entire season – let's see where this takes us…

Rivers takes it with just over 2:00 – dink and dunk – moving it out near midfield. Connect to Jackson on a corner route as the two-minute warning comes down. Ball is inside Broncos territory. Rivers to Gates moves it inside the 30 – incomplete to Tomlinson – terrible throw… inside a minute to go – pressure is on – Rivers gets sacked ball is fumbled – Chargers recover. Williams got the hit on Rivers. 3rd and 21 – Broncos blitz gives Rivers no chance – five sacks on Punky tonight. Field goal attempt by Kaeding sails far left and the Denver Broncos improve to 6-0 with Kyle Orton….

Anybody question Bowlen's move to hire McDaniels at this stage?

Welcome to the bye week – the Denver Broncos are 6-0…can it get any better?





Michael John Schon has covered the National Football League and the Denver Broncos for the past twelve-years. As a member of the Pro Football Writers Association he has published and syndicated columns to both newspapers and magazines throughout the United States and Canada. His syndicated radio broadcast: "Schon Live" airs weekly on various radio and Internet stations around the country. You can follow all of Schon's updates on Twitter or drop him an email at Michael John Schon



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