Insight from the Real Experts: Chiefs vs. Broncos

It is time again for our weekly conversation with the real experts of the Chiefs upcoming opponent, the fan who follows the team day in and day out. The Chiefs travel to Denver to take on the Broncos on Monday night. This week it was difficult getting the Broncos experts to sit down and answer our questions. However, two fans did find the time to respond and they make up our panel of experts this week.

This week our panel consists of Sam Dewitt, 26 year old writer/media relations consultant, from Denver, CO; a Broncos fan for "Eleventy Billion years". Our second is Kevin P. Clendening, 26 year old artist/student, from Tempe, AZ; a Broncos fan for 18 years.

In a switch from the Jets fans and the Raiders fans, these Broncos experts believe the Broncos defense is the key to a Broncos victory.

Question: What aspect of the Broncos attack do the Chiefs not have an answer for?
Answer: "Honestly, I think it's going to be the defense. I know KC has one hell of a good production offense, but I just don't see them getting much against our D when we come out of the gates strong and fast. Oh, and you might want to tell Trent Green not to go at Champ too early. He's called champ for a reason, fool." – Sam Dewitt

Question: Finish this sentence...."The Broncos will definitely win this game if...?
Answer: "They can keep consistent pressure on Trent Green." – Kevin P. Clendening

"The defense plays the whole game like they did in the second half against the Chargers." – Sam Dewitt

Question: Finish this sentence...."The Broncos will definitely lose this game if...?
Answer: "Priest Holmes and Larry Johnson are allowed to run loose." – Kevin P. Clendening

"The defense plays the entire game like the first half against the Chargers." – Sam Dewitt

Analysis: Denver's defense was the 9th best scoring defense in 2004. However, for a game and a half this year, they were anything but that. The Miami Dolphins hung 34 points on them in the first game of the season (to be fair, 7 of those points came from a defensive score). The San Diego Chargers scored 14 points in the first half last week. But something changed at half time of the San Diego game. In the second half, the Broncos only gave up three points and less than 50 total yards. Make no mistake about it; the Broncos have a very good defense, with very fast linebackers.

However, it bears mentioning again. The Chiefs are very good on offense against the leagues top defenses. Last season they faced six defenses ranked in the top ten in scoring last season (including the Broncos twice). In those six games, the Chiefs averaged 27 points per game and 126 yards rushing. In the two games against the Broncos the Chiefs scored 24 and 45 points.

The key will be the Chiefs rushing game featuring Priest Holmes and Larry Johnson. In the first game against the Broncos last year, Holmes ran for 151 yards and three touchdowns. In the second game, Johnson also ran for 151 yards and two touchdowns.

Question: What aspect of the Broncos concerns you the most?
Answer: "The play of the Offensive line has me worried. Denver's entire offense is based around the athletic offensive line, but recently there has been a palatable slide in consistency. If the offensive line struggles, the run game is shut down, and the team becomes one dimensional. Teams have started bullying our smaller line, and the offense as a whole has struggled." – Kevin P. Clendening

"The Broncos offense is a huge concern to me, and KC's D has improved a lot. The production has not been there this season, and until Jake starts hitting his receivers in stride, AND the running game gets back on track, AND Lelie and company stop dropping catchable balls... let's just say I'm not sleeping much these days." – Sam DeWitt

Analysis: By and large it seems the Broncos are more concerned about their offense than the Chiefs defense. To be honest, why should they. The Chiefs have not put together a solid defensive showing against the Broncos in the last 3 years. In fact, in the past 6 games against the Broncos the Chiefs have given up 185 yards rushing and just short of 4 touchdowns per game. The Chiefs will not beat the Broncos in Denver allowing that type of offensive production.

Through two games this year the Chiefs are giving up 3.1 yards per carry. If they can hold Denver to three yards per carry, they will have a very good chance of coming home 3-0.

Conclusion: The running game will be the determining factor in this game for each team. Which ever team runs the ball the best will be able to set up the passing game with play action and will that team will put more points on the board. There is no love between these two teams thus the battle in the trenches will be the key to nailing down a victory for the Chiefs and Broncos.

This this game has a huge impact on the rest on the division. Denver needs this game more than the Chiefs. Thus Kansas City should be far more relaxed going into this hostile environment than they were a week ago in Oakland.

Denver could face an early hole if they lose this game if they intend to be a factor down the stretch in the AFC West. Thus the battle of the Trenches is the single key to winning this game.

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