Quick Takes: Broncos at Seahawks, 2015 Preseason Week 1, 22-20 Win

We talkin’ about preseason

I get it, preseason games can often be overhyped. It can be incredibly difficult to evaluate players when they are running against guys who won’t be in the league four weeks from now. Still, jobs can be lost and won in preseason, just ask Bubby Brister. Not to mention that I think we are all happy that Broncos football is back.

This column is based off of Doc Bear’s Gut Reactions. Instead of using categories like “Good”, “Bad” and “Who the hell knows” I will be basing these names on Broncos Quarterbacks. Those should be fairly self explanatory. I will be using this format for all my Quick Takes come regular season, so if I should change anything let me know. After all, this is an exhibition game to get ready for week one for me as well.

The Elway:

-Antonio Smith beat Alvin Bailey and forced Wilson out of pocket early in the 1st. Good stuff.

-Wolfe looks back full strength, at least against the run. It’s a shame we won’t have him ‘till week 5.

-Ball slashed for some uncharacteristically impressive runs. He ran well all day.

-Cassius Marsh, you can’t sack Brock Osweiler, you can only hope to contain him. Awesome footwork and pocket prescence on a Roethlesberger esque play in the first.

-Oz has quite the arm. Speaking of Oz, he’s clearly scanning the field much, much better than before. Good desicion making as well from Mr. Osweiler. I like seeing him throw it away instead of taking sacks. Oz really played with no panic to his game today. He finished

-Virgil Green’s speed is obvious watching him play, and Kubiak is getting him involved in the passing game. If he can develop that facet to his game he could be a special tight end.

-If I had to pick one guy I would want on my side in a fight, it would be Malik Jackson. He is a beast and he did a nice job collapsing the pocket and pulling Russell Wilson down for a sack

-Norwood put a Seahawks nickleback on skates in the first quarter. Love his route running. Played well at receiver, although the muffed punt hurts. We need returners.

-Mc-the-Manus drilled a 52 yarder in the first quarter. McManus owned the kicking competition today, so good for him, bad for Barth. Not sure how I feel about that, I’ve been burned before.

-Shaq Barrett blew past the Seahawks tackle seemingly instantly only to record a sack the next play. I’m calling it he’s making this team.

-Latimer made an excellent catch on a too low Osweiler pass in the first. It says a lot about Osweiler’s performance that this was his worst throw of the night. Speaking of Latimer, his routes are unrecognizably better from last season.

-We could be seeing Osweiler to Latimer for the next 10 years, obvious chemistry. Osweiler loved passing to him, and as long as he keeps catching it I see no reason to stop sending it Latimer’s way.

-Backs played great overall, which means one thing: This O Line can play.

-Sly got consistent push, Nose Tackles don’t always show up in stats but pressures always nice.

-Shane Ray got into the back field and forced a fumble in the first. Mostly bad ball carrying, but still a nice play. Speaking of Ray, he recovered a bad snap a couple plays later. Oh wait, never mind he jumped off sides. Rookie mistake.

-Ok, I need some of whatever Hillman is on. He played lights out, where did this performance come from? Credit where credit is due, Hillman came to play. I’ve seen this movie before. He’s seems to show flashes only to fall flat eventually.

-I know he overthrew is slightly, but Osweiler threw an almost catchable bomb to Latimer in the second quarter on the run. The announcers were critical, but I loved the throw, he can’t check it down every play. He has all the tools you could ever want. On the next play he had a similarly good pass. It was taken back by a false start by Green, but nice high connection from Oz to Latimer. He went up and got it.

-Great job by Oz to drop a touchdown into Virgil Green. His touch, accuracy and decision making were all excellent. Gotta love it. The days of Virgil Green being a 6th lineman are hopefully over. Maybe we can finally use his 4.6 speed for good, instead of Foxball.

-Noticed Schofield’s blocking on a few plays, particularly on the Osweiler to Green touchdown. Maybe he can claim the right tackle job before week one.

-Gerald Rivers had a filthy strip of the Seattle third string quarterback, after Anunike forced him out of the pocket. Great athletic play.

-Speaking of Anunike, he translated a good camp into a great game. He showed great burst on a strip sack in the early 4th. He just looked like the best man on the field at times.

-Juwan looked good, although it’s a bad sign that he didn’t play ’till the third quarter.

-Love the effort by Siemian to stretch to try to get a first in the fourth quarter. Just short, but good athletic play.

-One of my favorite players who probably won’t make the team, Bennie Fowler made an awesome catch on a Seimian overthrow in the fourth.

-Siemian outplayed Dysert by quite a bit. He has a much bigger arm than I saw on tape. Accurate and poised too. He is playing against third stringers, but he was still solid. The rook showed veteran poise, and could push Dysert off this team. It looks like we have both a quarterback 1 and 2 for the future, and the value of that can’t be overstated.

-The backshoulder fade is popular in the league right now, and Taurean Nixon showed that he can defend that. Good stuff.

-Barrett was a beast literally to the last snap, getting pressure on the Seahawks quarterback. Impressive performance. Only defensive player who impressed me more was Anunike.

The Neckbeard:

-As good as Von is, he has no business covering Jimmy Graham, badly beat on a 1st down in the opening quarter.

-Why did we let Stephen Haushka leave town again?

-I’m not mad Solomon Patton, I’m just disappointed. C’mon, if you could just catch a punt you could be great with those wheels. He isn’t going to make the team if he keeps dropping open punts like that. One thin air commenter summed up my feeling about his muff: “ugh”.

-If Joe Don Duncan is the tank at fullback he’s been hyped to be, why can’t he clear out a linebacker and get Ball stuffed on 3rd and 1? Seems overrated. Wasn’t clearing out running lanes at all.

-Maybe if Bubba drops some more open passes we can see Bubba drop open passes with another team.

-Speaking of Caldwell, via commenter Yahmule: “Bubba fights off press coverage like a 12 year old with arthritis” Couldn’t have said it better myself.

-How does a 6’8 QB get a pass batted down at the line?

-Either Tyler Lockett is Devin Hester, or we suck on kick coverage.

-Patton apparently isn’t the only guy on this team who drops punts. Jordan Norwood, you were playing so well before a bad muff.

-Wow, even against the threes, the difference between Oz and Dysert is like the difference between myself and literally any quarterback ever. He was terrible. Bad overthrow lead to what should have been a pick in the 3rd quarter. He played poor football almost all day.

-I sure hope the analytics guy the Broncos hired isn’t gonna be telling Kubes to kick it on fourth and an inch come regular season. I get that we want to try out the kickers, but that’s just bad math.

-If Jeremy Stewart wants to even have a shot at making this team he’s gotta convert on fourth and inches.

-Why sign Spencer Lanning if you won’t let him anywhere near a punt?

The Tebow:

-Broadcast team mixed up Bradley Roby and Andre Caldwell’s pictures. Couldn’t be two more different talents.

-Can these announcers please get off Russell Wilson’s jock?

-Brownie points to whoever can spell Lemuel Jeanpierre correctly

-Ryan Harris tripped on a pull in the first quarter, that will go straight to Football Follies.

-How old is Seahawks Defensive Coordinator Kris Richards, 28?

-Hate the new PAT rules. Kick’s still automatic and it looks really weird.

-Pretty much no instant replay on this broadcast.

-Am I the only one who is surprised when I see Tavaris Jackson wear an NFL uniform? Announcers talk about him like he’s a grizzled vet. I see a marginal player who can’t hit water falling out of a boat.

-Hillman wore some sort of vampire teeth mouthpiece, which would be cool if it was any player but Ronnie Hillman.

-Great catch by “Tyler Hillman” in the second quarter. Gotta love preseason announcers.

-Coaches love it when a kick returner is tackled at the 12, and there was clipping on the play. Good job Seahawks.

Carroll getting trucked by the ref on a Lockett return made my day. 

-I don’t care what this NFL shop commercial says, I would disown my son if he wanted a Roethlisberger jersey.

-Worth noting that Gino Gradkowski was left in long after the other starting linemen were pulled. Coaches obviously are trying to get a longer look at him, may mean that the job isn’t his yet.

-Gotta love the NFL network feed going out for a couple minutes in the third. Guess the third string tech guys were in too.

-If I was named “Rush James Archer” I definitely wouldn’t go by R.J., marginal third stringer or no.

-For the Rams Raiders game, in which Case Keenum performed poorly, NFL.com ran the headline “Not Solving the Case”. God, I hate NFL.com.

-I love it when preseason announcers say things like “that makes it a two possession game” as if either team cares about the score. It’s only about individual performance evaluation in the preseason.

-Love the Seahawks’ fan looking like an idiot in a green confetti covered gorilla mask and Seahawks number 12 jersey, apathetically texting and not even watching the game in the stands. That dude encapsulates what preseason football is all about.

-You know it’s preseason when wide receiver number 6 is being covered by cornerback number 19.

Game Ball: Brock Osweiler

This was by far the best game I’ve seen from him in Denver. If he does anything close to this when (if?) he becomes the starter he will have a long and fruitful NFL career. Super efficient, completing 75% of his passes. Oz played with composure and the offense gelled around him. He also didn’t even come close to throwing a pick, and most of his incompletions were smart throw aways. Very good sign for the post-Manning era.

All in all it was a good opening game. Besides very poor special teams play, most players exceeded expectations. Latimer and the running backs also stood out in particular. While it is important to remember that this is preseason, it was definitely a good start for the young players on this team.

Again, this is my practice as well so let me know any suggestions you have for these recaps. I’ll see you all next week for my recap of Denver’s next preseason game.

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Leo Duke

My twitter's @Leo_Elway. 17 year old Broncos fan, representing in PA. Email me at leoelway@gmail.com, or shoot me a tweet if you have any football questions.