From Invesco Field, Denver
During the bye week and through the past week of preparations for the playing the Chiefs on Sunday, the Broncos worked real hard at adjusting their attitudes on a 2-6 start to their season.
To provide help, head coach Josh McDaniels (right) sought the help of the legend β Hall of Fame QB John Elway. See, he wasn’t even on the field and he was killing the Chiefs.
Elway spoke to the team last week and his message was interpreted in different manners by different players. But they all paid attention to No. 7 and what he had to stay.
“John Elway came out and talked to us and said ‘Don’t be relieved with a win and don’t be satisfied with a win. Just go out and take the win’,” said Denver current QB Kyle Orton. “I think everybody took that mindset into the game.”
LB Mario Haggans said Elway told them to just loosen up.
“We followed that and hopefully we can continue to play that way and use it as motivation for the rest of the season,” Haggans said.
What helped a lot for the Broncos was having a bye week to rest up and get ready to play the Chiefs. Essentially, they worked on preparing for Kansas City since they got back from their game in London where they lost to San Francisco.
“I know they put in a lot of time and work, starting last Sunday and coming off the bye week and I think a lot of that showed,” said McDaniels. “We talked about fundamentals last week and not hurting ourselves and trying to eliminate some of the negative situations that we’ve put ourselves in throughout the course of the season.”
The Broncos are now 3-6 on the season and coming up they go to San Diego and then host St. Louis before meeting the Chiefs again on December 5th at Arrorwhead Stadium.
“Kansas City fought all game, so we had to go 60 minutes, toe-to-toe with this team,” said Haggan. “We’ve got them in three weeks and it will be very interesting.”
The Chiefs never provide post-game information on injured players, but there were several based on what happened during the game.
As he was chasing LB Jason Hunter who was returning a fumble 75 yards for a TD, LB Brian Waters suffered what the Chiefs called a groin injury. He did not return to the game. Neither did RT Barry Richardson, who also chased Hunter to the end zone. But Richardson’s appeared to be benched, rather than sitting because he was injured.
Then late in the game when the Chiefs had an onside kick attempt, it appeared that TE Tony Moeaki may have taken a blow to the head. As there was a scrum for the ball, Moeaki was on the outside of the pile and started staggering, eventually falling to the turf. He was helped off the field and did not return.
Three players did not play because of injury: WR/RB Dexter McCluster (ankle), FS Jon McGraw (knee) and FS Kendrick Lewis (hamstring).
STADIUM ATMOSPHERE REPORT
There’s no doubt the Invesco Field crowd enjoyed their afternoon. The game was sold out, but there were plenty of empty seats, especially in the upper deck.
There were quite a few folks in the stadium wearing red and others were outside three hours before kickoff enjoying the tailgating.
The Broncos said paid attendance was 75,334.
For the second week in a row, the Chiefs had a crew of officials that did not turn in a very good effort. Referee Mike Carey and his crew came in to the game averaging 14 penalties walked off per game. On this afternoon, they were under their average with nine flags.
But the killer was when the Chiefs challenged a touchdown catch by WR Jabar Gaffney. Carey spent a great deal of time in the replay box on the sideline, only to come out and report that the system was not operable and thus the touchdown would stand.
Later, they called a penalty on the Chiefs involving an onside kick where they said the Chiefs did not have four men on one side of the formation. The fact is they did, which replay showed and which Haley showed them a Polaroid shot with the four players lined up correctly.
Haley spent a great deal of time in the ear of various officials during the game.
McDaniels threw the challenge flag twice and was one-for-two. He missed on a replay challenge of a Dwayne Bowe catch and fumble. That on-field ruling was upheld. But they reversed an incomplete pass call to WR Brandon Lloyd in the end zone when the replay showed he got both feet down.
Here were the six penalties that were walked off against the Chiefs:
- Offense β Jamaal Charles illegal motion (wiped out 18-yard completion) β minus 5 yards.
- Offense β Delay of game β minus 5 yards.
- Kickoff team β illegal formation (wiped out recovered onside kick) β minus 5 yards.
- Offense β Jake O’ Connell holding β minus 10 yards.
- Offense β Branden Albert holding β minus 10 yards.
- Offense β Leonard Pope false start β minus 5 yards.
S Ricky Price and LB Mark Simoneau were active for their first games of the 2010 season. They became the 53rd and 54th players to be on the field for the Chiefs this season. Right now the only players on the 53-man roster who have not been on the field are rookie LB Justin Cole and backup QB Brodie Croyle.
Price was added to the roster Saturday night and LB Charlie Anderson was released to make room for him.
The game-day inactive players for the Chiefs were WR/RB Dexter McCluster (ankle), FS Jon McGraw (knee), FS Kendrick Lewis (hamstring), Cole, FB Tim Castille, S Reshard Langford, LB Corey Mays and DT Anthony Toribio.
It was the first game that Mays has not played this season. It’s the seventh straight game that Langford has been a game-day inactive. It was the second game on the active roster for CB Jackie Bates.
Donald Washington started at free safety, his second start of the season.
Game-day inactive players for the Broncos were CB Andre Goodman (foot), LB Robert Ayers (hip), RB Laurence Maroney and rookies CB Cassius Vaughn, LB Kevin Alexander, OL Stanley Daniels and OL Eric Olsen. The inactive third QB was Brady Quinn.
Starting for Goodman was rookie CB Perrish Cox and stepping into Ayers spot at OLB was ILB Mario Haggan. Leading tackler & sacker LB D.J. Williams did not start the game, but he entered late in the first quarter as the club disciplined him for his Friday arrest for DUI.