Sunday’s match-up between the Broncos and Cowboys, looked to be one of the better match ups of the early season. Two Super Bowl contenders locking horns in Week 2. Dallas’ punch you in the face rushing attack and against one of the league’s best defenses. Denver’s rebuilt offensive line against an improved Cowboys defense.
Well…that’s all out the window after the Broncos just curb stomped the Cowboys, 42-17. The very definition of a hospital job.
The Broncos went straight bully with it, dotting Dallas’ eye, ripping their lunch money and hanging them by their fruit of the looms on a locker for everyone to laugh at.
Denver converted 9 of 15 third downs while Dallas only moved the chains 3 times on 14 attempts. And with the game already locked down, Broncos corner Aqib Talib took a victory lap with 53 seconds left — a 103 yard interception return that may as well have included a bottle of Crystal and a Cuban Cigar.
Maximum disrespect. And the only regret Talib had was that the party had to stop in the bleachers. “I wanted to run all the way up in the stands and go get me a hot dog,” Talib said postgame. “That was my initial plan.”
The Broncos are for real. Vance Joseph has got himself a gang of bullies. And after watching Denver absolutely shut down Ezekiel Elliott — holding him to 8 yards on 9 carries — doing something that not even the commissioner of the NFL can do — the defense that carried Peyton Manning to a Super Bowl win is back.
“We put the league on notice that we’re for real,” linebacker Brandon Marshall said. “There’s no defense in the NFL like us.”
There might not be. Because I didn’t think that anybody could do that to the Cowboys offensive line. I didn’t think anybody could slow down Zeke — a guy who started his career looking like Adrian Peterson in his prime, and spent yesterday looking like Adrian Peterson for the Saints. Eight Yards? EIGHT.
And maybe the worst part wasn’t getting shut down, but straight-up QUITTING in the middle of the third quarter after Chris Harris picked off Dak Prescott. Not my words, but LaDainian Tomlinson, who said on the NFL Network that Elliott did quit on his teammates. And I agree with him. Horrible sign and an even worse look for him. That’s the first sign of adversity that Elliott’s seen on the field and he handled it every bit as poorly as you’d expect. Say what you want about the off-field stuff, and the horrible and immature decisions he’s made there. But on the field, the guy always balled. Yesterday he was pouting on the bench like some kid whose fidget spinner just broke.
Fact is, Dallas isn’t as good as we all thought they were and Denver is better. The Denver dee is obviously Super Bowl caliber and if Trevor Siemian continues to sling it the way he did yesterday, this guy is more than just a game manager. Instead of hoping he won’t get them beat, the Broncos can now expect him to make the type of plays that enable them to win.
As for Elliott, he is now officially a disaster both on and off the field. There’s an excuse to shut down and not true. You can go a single minute talking to any player without them saying they only worry about those things they can control. Well, effort is one of the only things you CAN control. So there’s never any excuse not have Max effort. And Elliott showed very little yesterday.
My man, you’re enough of a distraction off the field, last thing you want is to become one on the field. And now you have.