The Denver Broncos had a golden opportunity to gain ground in the division. Instead, the team fell to 2-5 and now faces some tough decisions.
The Denver Broncos had the chance to pick up a win and be one game behind the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC West. That would have been quite the turnaround after an 0-4 start.
The team’s chances only went up when Patrick Mahomes went down with a knee injury in the second quarter. Not the way a team wants to be led to victory, but such is football.
So what did the Broncos end up doing? Laying a total egg in a 30-6 loss to drop to 2-5 and all but end the 2019 playoff hopes.
The players and coaches have plenty to talk about after such a bad loss in primetime. The front office also has plenty to talk about in order to accept reality and look ahead toward the future.
At this point it may be foolish for John Elway to think this team can reach the postseason. A lot of that falls on his personnel moves, which is no secret. That means some trades should be in order.
One player who can be shopped around is cornerback Chris Harris. He is on a one-year deal and a contending team can pick him up in a trade reminiscent of those seen in baseball. The Broncos would not get a ton in return but any and all draft picks help at this point. If teams are calling on the top players Elway needs to get anything he can in return. Keeping guys around for pride is futile.
Another player in a similar contract situation is wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders. A team fighting for a Super Bowl could use his experience. Him staying in Denver only prevents younger Broncos receivers from getting playing time in what is now a season focused on getting better for 2020.
There is one more major move to make and it is not a trade. That would be letting Drew Lock start over Joe Flacco. That is tricky given the veteran’s contract status but if Lock is indeed the future in Denver, it is better than watching what Flacco has done so far this season.
My bet is that Flacco will start the next two games. That takes Denver into the bye in Week 10. If the team is 2-7 or even 3-6 there is no logical explanation for keeping Flacco on the field over Lock, given the rookie is healthy and ready to go.
No team wants to accept defeat after seven games. But accepting reality is important if the Broncos want to improve in 2020.
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