Denver Broncos feature back Knowshon Moreno almost led his team to victory over the New England Patriots on Sunday, but then Tom Brady happened and the Patriots defense finally stopped getting gashed on the ground (also, the Patriots banged-up but talented secondary was absolutely remarkable). In the first half, though, the story was all about Moreno and the Broncos running game, as the Broncos were just running it down the Patriots throats, content with allowing Peyton Manning to attempt as little passes as possible in the cold, Foxboro wind. It was a good strategy, overall, as Manny Ramirez did an incredible job of grating the road in the running game, leaving Patriots starting UDFA DT duo Joe Vellano and Chris Jones overmatched.
Knowshon Moreno finished Sunday’s game with a whopping 224 rushing yards on 37 carries, and the funny thing is that it was Moreno’s first 100-yard game of the season. Then again, Moreno never ran the ball for more than 19 yards in any one game. He’s been an absolutely monster this season with an average of 75 yards per game on the ground, and he’s also caught 38 passes this season as an underrated part of the passing offense. Those who dissed the Broncos running game early in the season were trying to defy logic, and now rookie Montee Ball is coming on strong to give the Broncos a solid No. 2 option in the ground game.
But Ball might be pressed into the feature back role on Sunday against a tough Kansas City Chiefs defense, and running the ball has been a priority for the Broncos this season. Even though they have the best receivers in the game and an amazing quarterback, the Broncos know the value in a balanced offense and know the value that a guy like Moreno can bring to the table. However, Moreno suffered an ankle injury during Sunday’s loss and was spotted on crutches and in a walking boot following the game.
The good news is that Moreno’s ankle has no structural damage, and he reportedly just has a severe bone bruise. The bad news, though, is that it doesn’t guarantee at all that Moreno will be able to play in this week’s big clash against the Chiefs. According to the Denver Post’s Mike Klis, neither Knowshon Moreno nor cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (also injured against the Pats) were at practice today. Morneo was never supposed to practice today, so we’ll really get a feel for his Week 13 status once Friday rolls around.