Not a huge Bob Seger fan, but I do like that song. I was singing that when I filled up my van with all my shit and drove down highway 50 on my way back to Cali after living there from 1985 to 1988. Not that we (or I) have much of a history there, but the only real significant thing to happen in Denver was the death of Thomas Herrion after a preseason game in 2005. Of course there was that Super Bowl, but I digress. That was in Louisiana. . .
Other than that, we are 3-2 in the rarefied smog of Denver. A city that resembles a giant dirty bathtub when seem coming down from the mountains during a nice temperature inversion, as the pic shows. Our last game there was in 2006, where we won an OT thriller, 26-23. Cutler and Alex both threw pick 6’s, and Joe Nedney kicked 4 FGs. The more things change . . .
This game? Well, pressure is the name of the game. Get to Manning early and often. The 2009 loss to Indy serves as a pretty good blueprint. Manning didn’t get going all game. We disguised our coverages and blitzes, and held Manning to 0 TDs (and 347 yards!). Course we lost on a halfback option pass, but that’s beside the point. Point being that was in Manning’s prime. For all his numbers, he isn’t there now.
Play nickel (and some dime), dare Denver to run, and blitz from unconventional places. We stunted very well last week, and blitzed from different angles to flummox Austin Powers. Manning is certainly better than Davis, but neither is good under duress. Manning is off to another big season numbers-wise (1500 yards, 15 TDs, 3 picks), but he did lose to Seattle again amid 36 yards rushing and a lot of pressure and a pick.
So, keep that up. Quick pressure up the middle is paramount. Jam the receivers at the line, and disrupt the quick passes. As long as we don’t follow the trend of falling behind early (against these guys it could be 21-0 before they get it) we should be able to grind this out.
It’ll be tough but it could happen. If not, oh well. Losing in their house is not a sign of anything really bad. We have the Rams at home, and the Saints/Giants on the road. Not easy peazy, but we should be able to get all 3 of those. 7-3 is fine at that point.