12thMR: What were your thoughts on the offseason for Denver? Did they meet your expectations and do you feel better about them now than you did going into last year’s Super Bowl?
PO: The offseason was incredible. It sucks losing guys you grew to love like Eric Decker, Knowshon Moreno, and especially future Hall of Famer Champ Bailey, but change is often hard. When the Broncos signed T.J. Ward, I knew John Elway was going to be way more aggressive than anticipated because I didn’t see them going after the top tier of safeties. I also didn’t consider the Broncos would look at DeMarcus Ware, and certainly not Aqib Talib.
Shows how much I know.
But even in our wildest of dream offseasons, no one imagined we’d get what we got. Going into last year’s Super Bowl, my confidence was high based solely on our offense. That obviously didn’t pan out. Now, my confidence is even higher as I view this as the most complete Broncos team they’ve fielded in team history.
12thMR: The one position that improved the most this offseason?
PO: The defensive line, hands down. Can I say that? The Broncos got DeMarcus Ware from the Cowboys, and are flat out getting healthy. Derek Wolfe looked like he was emerging into a beast his rookie year before that wild injury and subsequent effects last year (against your boys in the pre-season). The Broncos are also getting a healthy Quanterus Smith, what they felt was one of the best pass rushers in the 2013 NFL Draft.
The real kicker here for draft fans is the addition of Marvin Austin at DT. He was a former top recruit at North Carolina, and former draftnik favorite before being dismissed from the team. After being a 2nd round pick, he was cut three times before winding up in Denver. He’s having arguably the best camp of any defensive player, working in with the 1s.
Other guys like Sylvester Williams stepping up and the depth across the board on the DL is unlike anything Bronco fans have ever seen.
12thMR: Does Peyton Manning exceed last season’s numbers or does he fall short? WHY?
PO: Certainly going to be hard to exceed, but I’ll say he comes short of those numbers for the sheer fact that I don’t think the Broncos are going to have to play catch up as often this year. They are so much better defensively (at least on paper) that I feel like the offense will be able to control the ball more, but certainly I see him surpassing 45 TD passes.
12thMR: 5 underrated players you think could make a difference in preseason?
5. John Boyett, S, former Colts draft pick
12thMR: What newcomer will make the most difference to the Broncos defense this season?
PO: DeMarcus Ware. The other guys will reap the benefits of the pressure applied up front, and with Ware combined with Von Miller, it’s going to be a dangerous year for opposing QBs.
12thMR: Give it to us straight, just how much are YOU looking forward to this matchup, not tonight, but in week 3? Anxious or worried?
PO: I can’t wait, but it feels a lot like it did last year when we had to play the Ravens. After getting beat on such a public stage in the playoffs, Broncos fans wanted a piece of the Ravens but also didn’t want the same thing to happen again that happened in the playoffs.
The same applies to Seattle.
12thMR: Want to thank Sayre Bedinger of our FanSided affiliate, Predominantly Orange for taking the time to answer these questions about his Denver team.
Tags: Seattle Seahawks