Mastermind Watch: Week 13

Tough, tough loss for the Broncos in San Diego. The Broncos fall 2 games back of the Chargers in the AFC West at 7-5, putting the division championship virtually out of reach. Any realistic playoff chance depends upon a wild card where the schedule (Miami, at KC, at Tennessee, Indianapolis) makes them a favorite over Baltimore (Giants, at Indianapolis, at Pittsburgh, Miami) for the final spot.

The story of this game was turnovers and field position. All of San Diego’s points were scored on drives that started on Denver’s half of the field. On average, San Diego’s first half drives started on Denver’s 48 while Denver’s first half drives started on their own 35. Both of San Diego’s touchdown drives started with a turnover and Denver’s best chance to win the game ended with an interception in the end zone with 3:39 left in the game.

Despite the loss, Denver showed me something this week. The defense came up big in the second half - holding San Diego to 3 point to keep the Broncos in the game. Jake Plummer almost brought the Broncos back in the second half - despite the absence of a rushing game and continuing fumble fingers from the receiving corps.

Returning to the MasterMind, Jake Plummer still displays bad judgment. The ball that resulted in the critical end zone interception with 3:39 to play has to be thrown where only Rod Smith can reach the ball. And despite Ashley Lelie’s improvement, the receiving corps continues to play like Rod Smith and the smurfs.