Our Broncos return to Mile High stadium this week in the same position they left it two weeks ago. Unbeaten. The Broncos have had a terrific start to the season, with the issues surrounding the QB position seemingly disappearing. That until Trevor Siemian went down injured in the 27-7 victory over the Buccaneers. Paxton Lynch stepped in for his debut and didn’t look back throwing for his first touchdown and looking every bit like the player we expected when he was drafted 26th overall in this year’s draft. However, if Siemian is fit you would expect him to start on Sunday against the Falcons, however I’m sure Kubiak will take no risks over his No.1 QB’s health and will go with Lynch this week if necessary. The Atlanta Falcons offence has been lighting up the NFL so far and will be a completely new challenge for the Broncos defence and it’s no fly zone. The Falcons are on a three game win streak and last week defeated Super Bowl 50 runners up and the 2015 MVP Cam Newton (with some Derek Anderson) 48-33. There offence is legit. No. 1 offence vs No. 1 defence. Something has to give this Sunday.
Broncos Key Player:
For this week 5 matchup I’m going with the controversial Aqib Talib as the key player for Denver. Yes he does some stupid things off the field sometimes, but on it there is no one better at the DB position. Coming off a two interception game last week in his return to Tampa Bay, Talib is bang in form and now has the most interceptions amongst active players. It is highly likely Talib will be covering Julio Jones, who collected 300 (yes, three hundred!) receiving yards last week and is looking like one of the best in the league at his position if not the best. Talib will have to be at his best Sunday, and if he is the Broncos will have an excellent chance of keeping the Falcons offence quiet and winning the game. We are the best defence in the league after all.
Falcons key player:
Matty Ice. Falcons QB Matt Ryan has seemingly returned to his best this year after a disastrous collapse in the second half of last season, but this year he has led his Falcons team to 3-1 and is heading the best offence in the league right now. They appear unstoppable. But they will be stopped again , as they were in week 1. Matt Ryan has thrown for 1473 yards through four games and has 11 TD’s to two interceptions. He is on fire right now. He even managed to put 48 points past an excellent Panthers defence, however he is yet to face a secondary as good as Denver’s and will not face one as good this season, unless the two teams battle it out in Super Bowl 51. He has some great weapons in particular Julio Jones who is balling right now, and they need the chemistry between those two to stay at similar levels if they are to beat Denver. Matt Ryan must play well as Atlanta’s defence has conceded 31, 28, 32 and 33 so far. They win through offence.
The major worry for the Broncos is QB Trevor Siemian who is expected to be ready in time, however Kubiak will make a decision Sunday and if not Paxton Lynch will step up and Austin Davis may dress for the first time this year. Only two Broncos didn’t practice yesterday who were Demarcus Ware and Kayvon Webster. Ware is expected to return in two to three weeks. For Atlanta three players didn’t practice Wednesday with two of their stating linebackers Deion Jones and De’Vondre Campbell sitting out alongside punter Matt Bosher.
Three keys for Denver:
Run the ball – CJ Anderson needs to pick up his game after two poor weeks.
Get Thomas and Sanders deep – Denver need to exploit a weak Atlanta defence.
Win the turnover battle – Denver must look after the football and be explosive on defence.
Three keys for Atlanta:
Protect Matt Ryan – Atlanta’s O-line has to be at its best to keep Ryan safe.
Get the ball to Julio – Julio Jones is a game winner. Matt Ryan has to keep him involved.
Stifle the run – If Atlanta negates Denver’s run game it will pile the pressure on our starting QB.
Although Denver hasn’t played an offence like Atlanta’s yet, Atlanta hasn’t played a defence like Denver’s yet and I’m backing our secondary to shut down Matt Ryan, Julio Jones and co. and I think our offence can cut the Falcons wide open. I’m picking Denver by 31-14 in this one.