By JL Herrera
The Oakland Raiders and the Denver Broncos are scheduled to meet for Monday Night Football in Denver. These two always provide an intense match for football fans, and that is why they are always scheduled for a Monday night game. However, this year could be a different story. The game will either be dominated by the powerful Broncos, or it will be a huge upset by the Oakland Raiders.
The Denver Broncos are 2-0 so far in the season, beating two strong teams in the process. In week 1, the Broncos got even with the Super Bowl Champs, the Baltimore Ravens. It was the Ravens who sent the Broncos packing in the playoffs last year. The revenge was a brutal blow for the Ravens as they lost 49-27 to the Broncos. Peyton Manning also tied an ancient record for throwing seven touchdowns in a game.
The other victims were the New York Giants and Peyton’s little brother Eli Manning, who always play with a strong defense. The Giants fell hard with a final score of 41-23.
Head Coach John Fox is a defensive-minded coach. During the off-season, the Broncos picked up defenders to reinforce—linebacker Shaun Phillips, cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, and defensive tackle Sylvester Williams. So far, the defense for the Broncos has been OK. The Ravens have gotten a bit weaker since last year and still managed to score 27 points on the Broncos. The Giants also managed more than 20 points. That could be a sign of weakness for the Broncos. If their high scoring offense can be stopped, then the Broncos will have major problems.
John Fox is also a run-first offense coach. However, the running scheme has not been the best part of the Broncos this season. Knowshon Moreno only has 127 yards in two games, and that is the best the Broncos have. On the other hand, the passing is outstanding, especially with Peyton Manning at the helm. In two games, the Broncos have 12 touchdowns. This team is a high power offense mostly through the air. In the last game against the Giants, Moreno got two touchdowns, which was his best game so far. Peyton Manning will come out gunning against the Raiders, while Moreno will do what he can on the running aspect.
Offensive and Defensive Weaknesses
Denver’s offensive weakness is basically the run. If the run is completely stopped, Manning will be passing a lot. The Raiders have a decent secondary unit that could give Manning a rough time trying to find an open man.
The defensive weakness for the Broncos is their secondary–the Broncos allowed 688 passing yards against them. Also, the teams that lost to the Broncos managed to score higher than 20 points each. So scoring on the Broncos is not an issue.
In the end, the Oakland Raiders are going to have a rough time at the Mile High Stadium playing against a high scoring team. The key is to stop the run. The Broncos have proven to be better than the Raiders at this, but the Raiders need to stop Moreno, who is having a rough time getting yards anyway.
It’s also important to stop Peyton Manning. The Raiders have only allowed 361 passing yards, which is way better than what the Broncos allowed. The Raiders secondary will be key and so will the defensive line, which will have to rush Manning to make him see who his real rivals are.
For more Raiders news and updates, visit Raiders Central.
J.L. Herrera is a huge fan of football and has been following the Raiders since the 1980s during the LA era. J.L. is also a freelance writer and copywriter on the web. He taught English for a little more than a decade in Los Angeles at the secondary level. While writing for web based news outlets, J.L. enjoys reading, creative writing, and watching sports. His work can be found on Examiner.com.