Some people are fans of the Denver Broncos. But many, many more people are NOT fans of the Denver Broncos. This 2013 Deadspin NFL team preview is for those in the latter group. Read all the 2013 NFL previews so far right here.
Your team: Denver Broncos
Your 2012 record: 13-3. One more time, for posterity:
By the way, Rahim Moore is still in Denver. As a football player! They aren't making him work the merch stand or anything. They're actually letting him back onto the field after that happened. I know dabbing is legal in Colorado now, but Broncos fans aren't forgetting that shit so easily.
Your coach: John Fox. He played for overtime. I don't give a shit if he coaches thirty more years. He's the guy who played for overtime. You had 31 seconds, two timeouts, and one of the greatest QBs in history going your way, and you took a fucking knee? BULLSHIT. Once you cross the line into Denny Green territory, there's no going back. You get a permanent suck branded on you that never fades. The Broncos will crush this division, cruise into the playoffs, and promptly piss it all away because Fox will play Martyball at the worst possible time. 10 years from now, Fox will be coaching in Arizona, giving angry postgame tirades that get retrofitted into crappy beer commercials.
But hey, at least he doesn't drive while shitfaced.
Your quarterback: Peyton Manning. And wasn't it nice to see Peyton back in the playoffs and woefully underperforming again? I didn't realize how much I missed seeing him HERPADERP away a 1- or 2-seed until I got to watch him do it all over again. It never gets old, really. In a perfect world, the Bears win that Super Bowl (a game Peyton didn't play all that well in) and we all get to tease him eternally for never winning it all. God, that would have been sweet. Fucking Rex Grossman.
Peyton is 37 years old. Just to get to that interception against the Ravens, he had endure endless rehab sessions and cobble together a decent passing offense with virtually no arm strength. That double overtime loss represents the MOST an elderly Peyton is gonna get from his body. Even with Boston's beloved FOOTBALL PEDROIA around, Manning will be running on fumes. His head might roll clean off his shoulders by midseason.
Your one fantasy player everyone will hate: Eric Decker. Demaryius Thomas and Wes Welker are both better than Decker. All that's left for Decker to do is bogart a handful of both men's touchdowns and underperform the second you plug him into the lineup. He'll have 150 yards receiving one week and you'll be like Oh okay, he's Peyton's go-to guy. And then it'll never happen again.
By the way, Montee Ball is here to be your stud rookie running back, and yet somehow I bet he loses carries to Ronnie Hillman, Lance Ball (so many Balls!), and fucking Knowshon. Peyton Manning doesn't want the defense thinking the BEST running back will get the carry. Better to trick them with an inside handoff to Ball No. 2.
Why your team sucks: Somehow, Von Miller's vague drug suspension has increased from four games to six, and I don't even know what drugs he's taken yet. If he got them from Tom Heckert, I bet they were quality. Anyway, the Broncos are now without their best two defenders since Miller will get suspended and since they lost Elvis Dumervil because no one in the front office is sober enough to know how to work a fucking fax machine.
(By the way, not to defend the Broncos front office, but faxing things BLOWS. If anyone ever requests you fax something to them and they won't accept a scan of a signed document instead, beat them senseless.)
Anyway, none of these defensive problems will ultimately matter because wherever Peyton Manning goes, he always manages to play in the weakest division known to mankind. How does this asshole always end up with a MAC conference schedule? The Broncos will kick the shit out of this division, rack up twelve wins, and then we're right back where we started, with Manning shitting himself, Fox pussying out, and Moore jumping a go route with a minute left in regulation like an idiot. Lather, rinse, repeat. Did you see the list of corpses that this team signed to prevent another Jacoby Jones miracle catch? Quentin Jammer? DRC? Whatever's left of Stewart Bradley's knee cartilage? They're an AFC Championship Game collapse waiting to happen, which is fine by me because the Broncos have always been annoying. Tom Jackson is annoying. Shannon Sharpe is a bag of shit. And John Elway has the working intellect of a small ant.
Why your team doesn't suck: The Patriots have no receivers. The Texans don’t have a good enough quarterback. The Colts are still a year or so away. The Ravens lost everyone. Congratulations, Broncos. You may very well win the AFC by default, and then have the pleasure of getting sandblasted by the 49ers in February.
The nine worst Broncos ever:
1) Maurice Clarett, who represents the apex of Mike Shanahan’s “Hey, maybe I am a mastermind!” phase.
2) Jarvis Moss
3) Willie Middlebrooks
4) Marcus Nash. I was gonna put Ashley Lelie on this list, but then I remembered Nash. Compared to Nash, Ashley Lelie was Megatron.
5) Tommy Maddox. Remember when Dan Reeves drafted him just to piss off John Elway? Football coaches are morons.
6) Dale Carter
7) Travis Henry. More babies than yards.
8) Steve Sewell
9) Josh McDaniels. People actually mentioned Josh McDaniels as a head coaching candidate after last season. I can imagine Broncos fans burning lampshades at the idea of that asshole ever getting a second chance.
Emails from Broncos fans:
In the mid-90's, my grandma was a coat-check lady at a big hotel in downtown Denver. John Elway was there one night. When she returned his coat, he put $20 in her tip jar and then fished out $18 in ones.
Our fans don't pee at urinals properly....
Pat Bowlen is a toffeenosed, senile nitwit whom Broncos fans think is Jesus because he bought a team quarterbacked by John Elway. You'll spew all kinds of bile at Bud Adams, but everyone leaves alone the secretly terrible owner who's gotten lucky despite terrible decisions. I hate that Bowlen's shittiness stays off the radar because it’s an especially vile, old school shittiness, the kind that occurs in families with tax-dodge mansions in Deleware and butlers who hide dead bodies. But mostly I hate him because he's somehow kept his nose clean in the Josh McDaniels shit show that was patently his fault.
Do you know how bad it is? The problem starts with turning over the team to George Bush's inbred cousin, Joe Ellis. After the Broncos hired him to do marketing, Joe Ellis ended up:
1) Firing Mike Shanahan the coach to get rid of Shanahan the GM. Those were his own words, which were totally defensible — if Shanahan had stayed on, my boys would have thought 2nd and 3rd round picks never, ever make the team).
2) Hiring Josh McDaniels to be the coach under Jim Goodman, the GM. With extra blabber about a strong GM, like the Ravens have.
3) Accidentally firing Jim Goodman by shit-canning his son without consulting Jim. Hey, the butlers never complained about that kind of shit!
4) Making Josh McDaniels combined coach-GM 2 months after firing Mike Shanahan because he was combined coach-GM.
All the while, the fur-wearing moron who put promoted this especially dim Bush family silver spoon stays in charge of the team, and nobody complains. Pat Bowlen then orders Josh McDaniels to trade Jay Cutler, and the fans blame McDaniels. Honestly, I think he hired the guy because he knew the smug face and hoodie would be a magnet for all the fan-hate. And you know what — it worked!
Pat Bowlen is secretly terrible. He's a dime-a-dozen rich jerk — born rich, got richer, doesn't seem to actually be smart or articulate or know how to run a fucking business — who was in the right place at the right time, and now thinks his shit smells like roses. He wasted most of John Elway's career with Dan Reeves calling traps and flea-flickers, got lucky with Mike Shanahan, kept Shanahan without wondering why the team pissed away first-day draft picks on players with epic knee injuries, then accidentally made a 32-year-old dictator of the Broncos. Thank God John Elway actually knows what he's doing. The problem is that Elway's acumen is completely irrelevant to his hiring. He'll go back to his car dealerships, or run for governor, then Pat Bowlen will put Shannon Sharpe in charge of the Broncos, and they'll accidentally trade away all of their best players because nobody can understand a fucking word that comes out of his mouth.
I will never complain about having one of the best quarterbacks in the league falling into my team’s lap. However, I can do without the clown in every section who yells “‘mon Peyton!” in a fake Southern accent before every damn offensive play. That guy can suck on a warm dick.
There are two types of people in Denver: racist white trash "natives" who are smug and insufferable, and people exiled from California for being too smug and insufferable (if you can imagine) who pretend to be natives.
They have one thing in common: they both spend July-February yapping about the Broncos and dreaming of the day they can maybe run into John Elway in Vail and do lines of cocaine and crushed-up adderall off of his dick.
People here are TERRIBLE drivers who routinely STOP on on-ramps, but act like its no big whoop when Elway's top two cabana boys get DUIs and slam into police cars because they were up at "Breck" and things are different "in the mountains".
Fuck Rahim Moore.
Our winningest playoff QB since John "Handjob" Elway? Tim motherfucking Tebow.
A couple of weeks ago, I was in Cheyenne, WY for a wedding. Since Cheyenne is only an hour and a half from Denver, there are quite a few Bronco fans there. I met one particular die-hard who swears up and down that Denver would have beat Baltimore if Tim Tebow were the starting quarterback of that game. His reasoning was that "Tebow would have ran for 90 yards and 2 touchdowns" because "Baltimore left the field wide open for Manning to run and he wouldn't do it." Yes, you read that correctly, Peyton fucking Manning is the starting quarterback and there are actually living, breathing human beings that prefer Tebow. He also went on to say that the Patriots were building their team around Tebow being the starter in 2 years, so there's that.
Also, the only game I have been to in Denver was when they let Jamarcus fucking Russell lead Oakland to a 4th quarter come-from-behind victory.
During the 1-4 start in 2011, conspiracy theorists on message boards were convinced first that John Elway was "jealous" of Tebow because Tebow was "more popular" than him.
Over/under on how many times I have to hear from the fucking announcers this year, "And how badly are the Broncos missing Von Miller right now"? I set the bar at 8.
SUPERFUCK Rahim Moore.
I had a Tim Tebow jersey. After he left, I gave it away in exchange for a $12 haircut.
Our logo looks like a heaving penis.
Fuck Josh McDaniels and Fuck Tim Tebow.
We haven’t had anything that has resembled a competent tight end since Sharpe left 3 centuries ago.
The fans here is Denver actually believe "God loves the Broncos so much that he makes sunsets orange".... No shit!! That crap is actually on bumper stickers here in Denver.
We treated Mike Shanahan like a God for 13 fucking years even as he only won one playoff game without John Elway and we needed a forced fumble by our punter to win that one. This is the coach who thought he could win it all with Jake Plummer and every Browns D-Line bust before drafting Jay Cutlet to be the chubby face of the franchise, and drunk Pat Bowlen still declared him coach for life and gave him enough money to build like the biggest mansion in Colorado.
I work for one of the other professional sports teams here in Denver and in that role, I'm at a lot of promotional/community events.
Every event, 80% of the Broncos fans I see have ragged, torn jerseys and they ALWAYS have dirt/filth smuged somewhere on their faces and jorts. They all look like Kenny McCormick's dad.
WE TRADED THREE DRAFT PICKS TO GET TEBOW.
Anyone wearing Broncos gear looks like they should be driving a Ford Ranger and listening to Sublime, regardless of how old they are.
The “In-Com-Plete” cheer whenever the opposing team has an incomplete play at Mile High or whatever they are calling it this year is borderline special ed.
Broncos fans don't care that Jake Plummer took them to an AFC title game with a flawed team and broke Elway's passing records along the way because he wasn't Elway.
Also, they're usually either white hipsters with misbehaved children in the sports bar, or hippies who are kind of sick of being hippies and want to just go bro out. Almost none of them can name any Broncos QB before 1983.
Broncos fans from Denver are dicks to any fan not from Colorado, no matter how long that person has been a fan. He/She immediately will ask where in Colorado you are from, and if you're not from Colorado that conversation is over. Unless you bring up Al Wilson, of all people. Broncos fans get boners when you bring up Al Wilson for some reason.
Also, the whole long-suffering Broncos fan bullshit. They won 13 years ago. Cry me a fucking river.
We have an overly conservative head coach who looks and sounds like the permanently shitfaced uncle who shows up to Thanksgiving dinner and drinks all of the beer before half time of the first football game. We named him Drunk Uncle John, which was shortened to just Drunkle John.
This summer, our Director of Player Personnel downed a bottle of peppermint schnapps and then decided to play demolition derby with a parked police car. Oh, and fuck Elvis Dumervil and his fax machine.
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