The Denver Broncos Made All The Right Moves In The Offseason


Oct 12, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Denver Broncos corner back Aqib Talib (21) runs an interception back with Denver Broncos safety T.J. Ward (43) for a touchdown against the New York Jets during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos brought in four high-profile players and let another go in the offseason. Now they are reaping the rewards.

Once again, the Denver Broncos look like the best team in football as we approach the end of October. They may not be putting up quite the same video game numbers they were in 2013, but the simple eye test tells you this is a much more complete Denver squad.

Much of the credit for Denver’s transformation and subsequent success in 2014 can be attributed to the aquisitions they made in the offseason. According to what has gone down so far, there is no question that the Broncos had the most successful offseason in the NFL. Let’s take a look.

Demarcus Ware — When Dallas let Ware go, many of us assumed it was because his best days were behind him — evident in Ware registering the lowest sack total of his career in 2013. I was one of those people, and I admit I was wrong. In 2014, Ware is one half of the most effective pass-rushing tandem in the NFL. Together, he and Von Miller have registered 15 sack. He is already one sack ahead of his 2013 total and were aren’t even to the halfway point of the season. In fact, Ware is currenly on pace to post the third highest sack total of his career.

Aqib Talib — If and when the opposing quarterbacks who face the Denver defense get passes off and into the secondary, they now face one of the elite shutdown corners in the NFL in Talib. Naturally, many offensive coordinators and quarterbacks will try to avoid throwing Talib’s way. Despite that, he is still tied for seventh in the NFL in passed defended. He has also intercepted two passes and returned one for a touchdown. It’s safe to say Denver’s secondary has been upgraded from a year ago.

T.J. Ward — Speaking of upgrades in the secondary, safety T.J. Ward has made his presence felt as well. A known enforcer over the middle, his presence alone is enough to make receivers coming across the middle tip-toe when they otherwise wouldn’t, throwing off the timing of routes. His versatility at the strong safety position allows Denver to use him to cover speedy receivers like Percy Harvin on one play and then move up and become a fourth and sometimes fifth linebacker on the next. Few strong safeties play the run as well as Ward and you could argue that none are as effective in the blitz.

Emmanuel Sanders — Many wondered whether or not Sanders would be able to fill the void left by Eric Decker. Wonder no more. Through the first six games of 2014, Sanders has caught 38 passes for 514 yards and a score. Through the first six games of 2013, Decker had caught 34 passes for 477 yards and two scores. In the meantime, Emmanuel Sanders has become Peyton Manning’s primary target between the 20s and his versatility allows Denver to use him in ways they couldn’t use Decker quite as much. Suffice to say, Sanders’ presence in Denver’s offensive attack makes the Broncos a more difficult team to defend in 2014 than they were in 2013.