Local Sports & Brew Links in the 303

Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco 49ers – Thursday Night Football Live Blog
The two best teams in the NFC West will square off in a critical game with huge playoff implications. Oh wait, none of that is true. I mentioned last week that a string of utterly useless Thursday Night games had begun. After a low-scoring stinker of a game, we get what will likely be another stinker of a game. Woohoo! The Los Angeles Rams are not sure how to play offense and their defense can do things... sometimes. Meanwhile, the San Francisco 49ers are competing with the New York Jets for the worst roster in the NFL. At least they have a good defense, though. I expect to tune in to this thread more so than the television tonight, but who knows, maybe the game will be a good one. Rams vs. 49ers live blog Turf Show Times Niners Nation Tweets from https://twitter.com/MileHighReport/lists/broncos-gameday [...]
2
Like
Save
Bills' McCoy vows to find his stride against Broncos
LeSean McCoy wouldn't be topping 9,000 career yards rushing if he spent time wilting at the prospect of facing defenses stacked against him or deflecting blame after a bad outing. Stopped in his tracks by Luke Kuechly and the Carolina Panthers last weekend, McCoy expects much more from himself with Von Miller and the Denver Broncos coming to town Sunday. Too many excuses,'' McCoy said, shouldering the blame for being held to 9 yards on 12 rushes - a career low for a game in which he has more than seven carries - in a 9-3 loss to the Panthers . [...]
3
Like
Save
[MLS: Colorado Rapids] – Training Report | Preparing for best in the West | September 21, 2017
[...]
2
Like
Save
Broncos prepare for Bills' ground stampede of LeSean McCoy, Tyrod Taylor
McCoy and Taylor are the two pistons that power a running game that has been the league's most explosive since the start of the 2015 season. [...]
1
Like
Save
Cubs rally in 9th, beat Brewers 5-3 in 10th to extend lead
MILWAUKEE — Javier Baez grounded a tying single with two outs in the ninth inning, Kris Bryant hit a two-run homer in the 10th and the Chicago Cubs widened their NL Central lead over Milwaukee, beating the Brewers 5-3 Thursday night. The Cubs now are 4 1/2 games ahead of the Brewers after winning the opener of a four-game series. Related ArticlesSeptember 21, 2017 Where have you gone, Tim Lincecum? In search of beloved Giants ace. September 21, 2017 Rockies rookies dress up in Broncos gear for flight September 20, 2017 Aaron Judge hits 45th home run, young girl hit by foul ball as Yankees top Twins September 20, 2017 Giancarlo Stanton hits 56th homer, Marlins beat Mets for sweep September 20, 2017 Get used to it: With record number of homers, MLB is in midst of a fundamental shift Milwaukee was in position to win it in the bottom of the ninth, loading the bases with one out. But Wade Davis (4-1) struck out Domingo Santana and then, after falling behind 3-1 in the count to Orlando Arcia, came back to retire him on an easy comebacker on a full-count pitch. The Cubs trailed 3-2 when Ian Happ led off the ninth by hitting a grounder that first baseman Neil Walker fielded wide of the bag. Reliever Jeremy Jeffress covered first and Happ was called safe in a close play, a ruling upheld on replay. Happ moved to second on a one-out grounder and scored when Baez, down to his last strike, singled up the middle. Bryant hit his 28th homer, connecting off Oliver Drake (3-5). [...]
1
Like
Save
Rockies shut out again as the crumble continues, this time in San Diego at the hands of a rookie
SAN DIEGO — Cheerfully blind to the one-sided pressure he parachuted into Thursday, Christian Villanueva, the 26-year-old Padres third baseman from Guadalajara, Mexico, dispensed the Rockies in back-to-back at-bats without a care in the world showing. Villanueva was playing in just his fourth big-league game, counting up, he hopes, to an extended career. The Rockies were counting down. With 10 games remaining in their season and two teams hot on their trail trying to steal away a wild-card spot, Colorado looked like a club running out of gas in a 3-0 loss at Petco Park. The best Rockies team in seven years is crumbling. Colorado lefty Tyler Anderson gave up a 410-foot solo homer to Villanueva in the fifth inning, his second career shot and on consecutive nights to the second deck in left field, and a run-scoring single to Villanueva in the sixth. And San Diego sniped the Rockies for a fourth consecutive loss. “It was an 0-2 changeup that he hit to the moon,” Anderson said. The Rockies are lucky they haven’t been eclipsed. After the Chicago Cubs outlasted the Brewers with Kris Bryant’s two-run homer in the 10th inning, Colorado (82-71) remained one game ahead of Milwaukee for the second and final National League wild-card spot, and 1 1/2 games in front of the Cardinals. But they are sliding into danger. The Rockies’ offense was shut out on a second consecutive night — for the first time since 2015 — by another team that can’t see the playoffs with a telescope. The Giants on Wednesday took down Colorado, 4-0, behind left-hander Matt Moore (6-14, 5.20). On Thursday it was lefty Clayton Richard (8-14, 4.63), another middling veteran, who set them down. “Obviously right now we want to win every one. But big picture, it’s two games,” Anderson said. “We have an unbelievable team. This team is resilient. We can bounce back. Nothing will hold us back.” This six-game road trip down the West Coast, against the worst team in the NL and another only slightly better, was supposed to accelerate Colorado toward the finish. Instead, the Rockies, in the heat of a postseason chase, have not scored in 19 consecutive innings. Nolan Arenado and Mark Reynolds each singled twice, the only Rockies with multiple hits off Richard, who on Wednesday signed a two-year, $6 million extension with San Diego. Neither of them reached second base. Only DJ LeMahieu got past first base, in the first inning, after he singled and Arenado singled behind him. “You have to be relaxed and loose, but yet be focused and intense,” Colorado manager Bud Black said from his dugout before the game. “It’s a skill. And a lot of times, experience helps create that skill.” Boxscore: San Diego 3, Colorado 0 Villanueva, with very little experience, seemed to exhibit very little anxiety. Anderson worked through 5 2/3 innings with just six hits off him. But Villanueva’s homer in the fifth was the first run allowed by Anderson in 14 innings since he returned from knee surgery. Related ArticlesSeptember 21, 2017 Rockies riding the wave of postseason pressure with a “positive vibe,” but plenty of urgency September 20, 2017 Rockies’ Charlie Blackmon not ready to ponder 200-hit milestone or MVP talk September 20, 2017 Rockies’ offense a no-show again in loss to Giants September 20, 2017 Tracking the Colorado Rockies and the race for the National League wild card September 20, 2017 Coors Field will get a massive new video board and a sound system, Rockies announce Anderson (5-6, 5.24) allowed the other run on a sacrifice fly by Hunter Renfroe in the sixth that scored Wil Myers, who had walked. Anderson struck out six in total. But pitching was not the problem. The Rockies hit into three inning-ending double plays, in the first, fourth and seventh. Richard struck out eight and walked just one. “Our offense is potent. There is no doubt in my mind that our offense will show up,” Anderson said. “When you least expect it, they’re going to put up 12 on you. We’re capable of it every day.” Even LeMahieu’s workmanlike 12-pitch at-bat in the eighth, with Pat Valaika on second base and Charlie Blackmon at first, fell short. Reliever Kirby Yates forced LeMahieu to foul off six pitches before striking him out. The game ended in a whimper as Trevor Story, Ian Desmond and Carlos Gonzalez each struck out at the arm of Brad Hand. The Rockies’ magic number — the combination of wins and Brewers losses needed to reach the postseason for the first time since 2009 — fell to nine. But there is nothing especially magical about an 0-for-3 start to this late-season road trip. “We haven’t been getting the big hit,” Story said. “These games are im [...]
1
Like
Save
With a two-headed monster in the circle, Brighton softball’s barreling toward its first state title
Second-year Brighton softball coach Marty Stricklett gathered his players at practice a few weeks ago to dish up some motivation that left him on the receiving end of a few quizzical looks. “I told them, the biggest number you have to remember is 10-2,” Stricklett said. “None of them knew what I was talking about.” Stricklett’s “10-2” mantra is derived from the score of the Bulldogs’ final game last season, a decisive loss in the first round of the Class 5A state tournament to this fall’s top-ranked team, Eaglecrest. “I want them to remember the feeling of 10-2 and what that felt like to get eliminated from the state playoffs early,” Stricklett explained. “And that we have to compete day-in and day-out at practice so that doesn’t happen again.” Brighton’s lone loss this year, a narrow 5-3 setback to Eaglecrest on Aug. 24, proves the No. 3 Bulldogs (12-1) have busted into the top tier of 5A programs as they continue climbing a learning curve toward the program’s first state title. If Brighton can hang with a championship favorite like the Raptors during the first week of the season — and if the team can post victories over quality opponents as it did against No. 10 Columbine in the championship game of the Dave Sanders Tournament two weeks ago — then all indications point to the Bulldogs making noise at the end of October. Catalyzing Brighton’s success is the one-two pitching combination of junior Halie Litwin and sophomore Tori Haug, arms that Stricklett switches back-and-forth between, depending on matchup. “Against Columbine, I pitched Halie for the first four innings, Tori for the fifth, Halie for the sixth and Tori for the seventh,” Stricklett said. “It’s a true two-headed monster out there, so if I can see that they’re timing up certain girls, I’ll switch them in and out. They’re two totally different pitchers — Tori is a dropball, riseball girl, where Halie is more of a screwball, curveball girl. One’s up-and-down, one’s in-and-out.” And though the Bulldogs are still relatively young with five juniors, three sophomores and just one senior in the starting lineup, Stricklett believes his program is capable of establishing itself as a powerhouse, just as his teams did in his eight years at Wheat Ridge, where he coached the Farmers to four 4A state titles. “We have a very young group of athletes, and they’re starting to work hard and buy into the system,” Stricklett said. “And we have our goals set for this year — they’re the same set of goals I had at Wheat Ridge.” [...]
3
Like
Save
Denver South grinds out Week 4 win over Heritage for coach Ryan Marini’s first career victory
New Denver South football coach Ryan Marini earned his first career win on Thursday night, beating his alma mater Heritage 35-20 in a non-conference, Class 4A affair at Littleton Public Schools Stadium. “It’s cool to be on my old field, but more than about me, I’m just happy for our kids,” Marini said. “They’ve been working so hard, and we’ve lost two games in the last minute where we’ve had the lead. But we hadn’t really earned it yet. Tonight, I felt like we earned it.” Denver South struck first after taking advantage of an interception deep inside the Eagles territory, as senior running back Brandon Martin’s 4-yard touchdown run gave the Rebels an early 7-0 advantage. Heritage, playing without the services of injured senior running back Josh Martin, responded with its other dynamic backfield weapon in senior Tyler Zoesch, whose 14-yard touchdown run tied the game 7-7 with 6:29 to play in the first. The Rebels weren’t done scoring in the opening quarter, however, as Brandon Martin busted a 57-yard scoring scamper with less than four minutes to play in the frame to give Denver South a 14-7 advantage. “He’s a complete X-factor,” Marini said of Martin. “He’s also probably the smartest football player I’ve ever coached. He brings that athleticism, and he’s a double X-factor because he’s like a coach on the field.” The Eagles came right back early in the second quarter, with Zoesch finding the endzone by ground again, this time from 64 yards out in what is the longest offensive play for Heritage this season. The extra point was no good, making it a 14-13 score in favor of Denver South. But it was the Rebels who — in a seesaw battle between two winless teams hungry for their first victory — had the decisive momentum-shifting play. It came with 5:58 to play in the second quarter as Rebels senior quarterback Kwesi Singleton scrambled and found senior wideout Hassan El-Amin for a 64-yard touchdown strike to give Denver South a 21-13 advantage and a tangible swagger heading into halftime. After a scoreless third, Denver South added another score early in the fourth quarter to go up 28-13 but the Eagles came back with a third Zoesch touchdown run, this time from 3 yards out, to make it a 28-20, one possession game with 4:55 to play. Defensively, Heritage senior linebacker Matthew Brouillette was all over the field to limit the Rebels’ offensive playmakers. Meanwhile, junior tackle Nejon McCray stood out for Denver South with his backfield disruption, as did sophomore linebacker Nate Flannery, whose 38-yard scoop-and-score sealed the win for the Rebels with 3:27 to go in the fourth. Denver South (1-3) hosts Palmer next Friday at All-City Stadium, while Heritage (0-4) plays on the road at Mesa Ridge that same night. “I told the kids that now that the monkey of (that first win) is off our back a little bit, we can be more confident,” Marini said. “And like we did tonight, we can play with the lead with a little bit more assurance instead of always being worried about losing. We’re going into league here in a couple weeks, so hopefully we can use this momentum to move ahead.” Listen to the archived broadcast of the game: [...]
4
Like
Save
Next one? Basketball phenom Emoni Bates at 13 has college offer, NBA height.
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Emoni Bates walks out a front door of Clague Middle School with just inches to spare. A wide smile tops his 6-foot-7, extra-lean frame. He’s holding a seventh-grade honor society certificate in his right hand. His braces gleam in the afternoon sun. Meet the best 13-year-old basketball player in America, according to some recruiting services. One of his highlight reels on YouTube has been viewed about 1 million times. “I don’t really pay attention to it,” Emoni insists in a voice just louder than a whisper, “because if I pay attention to it, it’s just going to get to my head. “And I don’t want it to get to my head. I just want to play basketball.” He’s got the pedigree. Emoni’s father, E.J. Bates, has been around the game most of his life. He picked greens and baled hay as a kid in nearby Milan, Michigan, then developed into a smooth-shooting guard. But he didn’t take school seriously until it was too late. Instead of playing for a basketball power like Kansas and maybe even in the NBA, E.J. wound up going to Kentucky Wesleyan and settling for pro hoops in Switzerland. E.J. is determined to make sure his son doesn’t make the same mistake. The academics are a sign of that. House rules bar Emoni from picking up a basketball until his homework is done. Yet E.J. knows when kids are this good this early, distractions roll in like waves. Already, it seems, lots of people want a piece of Emoni. Prep, private and public high school coaches are lining up. Colleges have him on their radar. DePaul took it a step further, offering Emoni a scholarship in late August. Two other much-touted players in the Class of 2022 — Amari Bailey of Illinois and Skyy Clark of California — also have offers from DePaul. E.J. knows the shoe company bird dogs and other hustlers looking to buy favors are lurking, too. So he and wife Edith, who works for the Red Cross, keep their inner circle very tight. “I’m his coach to keep the snakes away,” Bates says, sitting on one of Clague’s concrete benches. “We’re not for sale.” The Bates family has agreed to provide The Associated Press with a rare, behind-the-scenes look at the life of one of the most coveted basketball prospects in the country for at least the next five years. The periodic series will include video, photos, audio and text updates to track his progress. Will Emoni stay near his current home to attend a public high school? Or will he take his next step at a private school like Detroit Country Day, like Michigan native Chris Webber? Will he follow the footsteps of Marvin Bagley III and other five-star prospects, reclassifying to finish high school in three years? Bagley did to play college ball at Duke this coming season — and potentially to get a jump on a pro future. Will E.J. and Emoni emulate the father-son team of LaVar and Lonzo Ball, grabbing headlines while hawking their own brand at every turn? No one knows. E.J. says all options are on the table. But he won’t be loud, unlike LaVar Ball in the lead-up to his son Lonzo being drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers. “I don’t have to brag about what we’re doing,” E.J. says. “I let other people do all the talking about how good Emoni is because word of mouth is the best advertising there is.” A POTENTIAL STAR IS BORN Emoni James-Wayne Bates was born Jan. 28, 2004, at the University of Michigan hospital. He was on the light side — 6 pounds, 7 ounces — and a little long at 21 inches. Just over a year later, Emoni slept with his head cradled in his left arm and his right wrapped around a black and red basketball. A cherished photo was made. “He would always sleep with the ball,” his father recalls, holding a framed picture in his Ypsilanti, Michigan, home. “If the ball wasn’t around, he would cry about the ball. Even to this day, he has a mini-ball he keeps with him, which is crazy to me.” There were more hints. During a second visit to the doctor, E.J., who is 6-foot-4, and Edith, 5-9, asked how tall their son might grow. “He was off the charts,” E.J. laughs, “so they couldn’t tell us.” Emoni has shot up 7 inches in the last two years. He’s tall enough right now to play shooting guard at any level. He handles the ball like a point guard and launches 3-pointers like a savvy veteran. He can create his own shot like a wing or drive the lane and dish off to a teammate like another rail-thin former prodigy, Golden State Warriors star Kevin Durant. But adding weight and muscle is an ongoing challenge. He weighs just 155 pounds — not heavy or strong enough to play a dominating inside game that would complement his fluid perimeter skills. “We try to stuff him full of food at night and hope it sticks,” E.J. sighs. TEEN CELEBRITY The Adidas Invitat [...]
1
Like
Save
Menelik Watson: Player spotlight, Numbers to know for Broncos at Bills
Menelik Watson, Broncos OT The skinny: Menelik Watson has started and played every offensive snap at tackle so far this season. But he’s also yielded five-and-a-half of the Broncos’ six sacks of quarterback Trevor Siemian. After facing Chargers Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram in Week 1, and Dallas’ DeMarcus Lawrence in Week 2, Watson now prepares to go up against a Bills’ pass rush that sacked Carolina quarterback Cam Newton six times last weekend. The background: The Manchester, England, native is relatively new to American football. He played college basketball at Marist College from 2009-10, then transferred to Saddleback (Calif.) Junior College, where he played football for the first time and lined up at tackle opposite of Kyle Long. Watson played one season at Florida State before the Raiders selected him in the second round of 2013 draft. The Broncos signed Watson as a free agent in March after he had spent four injury-riddled seasons in Oakland. Denver believed he had the potential, toughness and certainly the size (6-foot-5, 315 pounds) to start on the edge of their remade offensive line. His take: “We’re not here to be bottom of the barrel,” Watson said of the O-line. “We’re trying to be the best line in the league, period. If there’s a line out there that’s not trying to do the same thing, they shouldn’t be playing football. We’re just trying to bring that nastiness and trying to just do our part to make sure this team is winning football games.” Their take: “We want to be smart bullies,” head coach Vance Joseph said. “We don’t want to be idiots. We don’t want to get penalties that cost us big plays in the game. (Watson is) an emotional guy, but he’s also a tone setter.” Numbers to Know 16-19-1: The Broncos’ all-time record against the Bills, including an 11-12 record on the road. 6: Touchdown passes by Trevor Siemian, tied for the NFL lead so far this season. His 24 TD passes in his first 16 starts rank third among Broncos quarterbacks all-time, behind Peyton Manning (37 in 2012) and Frank Tripucka (27 from 1960-61). 159.0: Average rushing yards by the Broncos, the most in the league entering Week 3. 3.5: Sacks needed by Von Miller (75.5) to tie Karl Mecklenburg (79) for second place on the Broncos’ all-time list. 14: Victories in the Broncos’ last 17 games during the NFL’s early kickoff window (11 a.m. MT). All 17 games have been on the road. 11: Defensive touchdowns (eight interceptions returned for TDs, three fumbles returned for TDs) by the Broncos since 2015, tied with Kansas City for the most in the league in that time. The Broncos are 10-0 when scoring a defensive touchdown since ’15. Related ArticlesSeptember 21, 2017 Kiszla: There’s old friend of the Broncos lurking in Buffalo, itching to ruin Denver’s 2-0 start September 21, 2017 C.J. Anderson changed it up this offseason. Now he says he’s back to “playing undrafted.” September 21, 2017 Broncos LB Von Miller calls low hit by Cowboys tight end “just baffling” September 21, 2017 Garett Bolles returns to Broncos practice after suffering lower-leg bruise September 20, 2017 Kiszla: His Broncos teammates have a man crush on quarterback Trevor Siemian. Here’s why. [...]
0
Like
Save
C.J. Anderson changed it up this offseason. Now he says he’s back to “playing undrafted.”
It’s a Wednesday afternoon and C.J. Anderson is still donning his cutoff workout hoodie and grass-stained training pants, pulled up to expose his bright pink feet. He went with Powerpuff Girls (Buttercup is his favorite) this day, so he wore his “Girls Rock” socks under his No. 22 sandals. Last Sunday, after tearing up the Cowboys’ defense, Anderson walked around Sports Authority Field at Mile High with his Sonic The Hedgehog backpack, an appropriate accessory with his sparkling blue Christian Louboutin sneakers valued at $3,000. Every practice includes a different pair of cartoon socks, and game days typically include a bit of color and a bit of bling. Because Anderson likes to keep it fresh and interesting and, if you haven’t noticed, he’s changed up quite a few things this season, on the field and off. “Everything I know now is week to week, day to day,” he said. “I got to take care of Monday before I can take care of Tuesday. That’s how I look at it now.” Related ArticlesSeptember 21, 2017 Kiszla: There’s old friend of the Broncos lurking in Buffalo, itching to ruin Denver’s 2-0 start September 21, 2017 Menelik Watson: Player spotlight, Numbers to know for Broncos at Bills September 21, 2017 Broncos LB Von Miller calls low hit by Cowboys tight end “just baffling” September 21, 2017 Garett Bolles returns to Broncos practice after suffering lower-leg bruise September 20, 2017 Kiszla: His Broncos teammates have a man crush on quarterback Trevor Siemian. Here’s why. Last weekend against the Cowboys, Anderson rushed for a game-high 118 yards on 25 carries and forced six missed tackles, according to Pro Football Focus. And entering Week 3, he has amassed 199 yards rushing (second-most in the NFL) and is on pace for 1,592 on the season. He’s been a catalyst for the Broncos and a vital piece of their offensive revival. But his journey back from a meniscus injury and his journey ahead as the leader of a deep running back group prompted a new training regimen and, he says, a new outlook. At the recommendation of running backs coach Eric Studesville, Anderson took up cycling, for both recovery and conditioning, to help him stay on the field longer. Some weekends he’d ride up to 72 miles. Others, he’d go for 65. Tuesday, he went for a casual 12. “He was trying to find something that he could do that he felt like was really pushing himself, training-wise,” Studesville said. “As we were talking about it, some of the things he was doing with his knee recovery and everything, the boxing and twisting on it, we weren’t sure that was really good for him. So I threw out to him, ‘Hey, why don’t you try cycling? I don’t know, but try it out because it’s just continuous motion, it’s gotta be good for the knee to be moving, it strengthens your legs, plus you can get a good workout from it. He didn’t quite believe it until we went riding the first time.” The work has paid dividends as Anderson, who says he’s in the best shape of his life, leads all NFL backs with 45 carries through two weeks. At this rate, he will have 360 by season’s end. He’s never logged more than 179 (2014). Anderson is quick to point out that he got off to quick start last year, too, when he logged 40 carries for 166 yards in the first two games. But his played slowed with 164 yards over the next four games and then his season was cut short with the knee injury. “I think his body is different. I certainly think his conditioning is different,” Studesville said. “But I don’t think it’s just the cycling. I think it’s all the things he’s done. He’s a prideful person. He’s put a lot of time and energy into doing things to get ready to perform this season. I think cycling is just one of them, but his training he did in Houston and things he’s done here and the other things he’s done to take care of his body.” The biggest question that followed Anderson then continues to hover over him now, even as his play turns heads: Can he turn in a complete 16-game season? The injury that ended his 2016 season was among many that have stalled Anderson’s seasons over the years, but the latest prompted him to focus more on recovery. “I am doing some things, recovery-wise, to keep my body fresh and to keep my mind fresh. I want to continue to keep doing that,” Anderson said. “I think my teammates are helping me with that too, learning from Demaryius (Thomas), Emmanuel (Sanders), Von (Miller) and (Aqib) Talib, who have been in the league long enough. You start getting around and my life has changed a little bit, financially, so now I can afford some of those oth [...]
4
Like
Save
Kiszla: There’s old friend of the Broncos lurking in Buffalo, itching to ruin Denver’s 2-0 start
Fear the Rico. There’s a reason the undefeated Broncos are ripe to get upset in Buffalo. It’s not because this is a trap game wedged between a big victory against Dallas and a showdown against the hated Raiders, a theory that’s amateur psychology nonsense. And the early kickoff shouldn’t be a negative factor for Denver, which has won 14 of the past 17 times it has played at 1 p.m. Eastern time. Unlike pouty Cowboys star Ezekiel Elliot, Bills running back LeSean McCoy won’t quit; but I’m afraid Denver has a bigger issue on its hands. So what’s the problem? His name is Rick Dennison, who now works as an assistant coach in Buffalo. Former Denver coach Gary Kubiak always called him Rico, and loved Dennison like a brother. But as thanks for winning a championship ring against Carolina with the Broncos, Dennison got dumped in January as the team’s offensive coordinator. He has studied all the strengths and weaknesses of quarterback Trevor Siemian, then took the inside information with him to Buffalo. This bittersweet reunion on the field with Denver is the Super Bowl in 2017 for Dennison, unlikely to get a sniff of the playoffs with the Bills. “They know what we do; we know what they do,” Broncos defensive coordinator Joe Woods said Thursday. Well, this much we know is true about Dennison: He’s unafraid to win ugly. As fans in Broncos Country know all too well, Dennison will dial down the pace until an NFL game becomes little more than an excuse for a nap on the sofa. While new Denver offensive coordinator Mike McCoy is more apt to draw up a play in the dirt than to strictly follow a script, Dennison is an engineer that prefers the sweat equity of a one-brick-at-time grind. Yes, Dennison is in charge of the offensive game plan in Buffalo. But maybe where he can be of the greatest assistance to the Bills is to give them a peek inside the head of Siemian and how he likes to play football. So here’s what I expect the Bills to do. They will commit more defenders to the box, because Denver has established its offensive identity as run-first, with C.J. Anderson and Jamaal Charles providing a one-two punch that has allowed the Broncos to lead the NFL with 159 yards rushing yards per game. “Thank God our running game is playing really well,” said receiver Emmanuel Sanders, who recently had a chat with his father about Denver’s new offensive approach. Dad and son agreed: “If we’re able to keep running the football like that and be multidimensional, it’s going to be hard for teams to stop us. You can sit up there and play zone (in the secondary) all you want, but when C.J. is running for 150 yards — C.J. and Jamaal running for 150 yards — at some point you’ve got to load the box.” Unlike the Cowboys, whose defensive backfield was wrecked by injury, Buffalo would be unwise to so easily concede short, pitch-and-catch routes to Demaryius Thomas on the sideline. After piling six sacks on Carolina quarterback Cam Newton in Week 2, expect Jerry Hughes and the Bills’ edge rushers to push Siemian up in the pocket and force him to work the middle of the field, where his eyes tend to get lost in traffic and his throws are more often rushed. Related ArticlesSeptember 20, 2017 Kiszla: His Broncos teammates have a man crush on quarterback Trevor Siemian. Here’s why. September 19, 2017 Jhabvala vs. Kiz: Has Trevor Siemian or C.J. Anderson been sweeter surprise for Broncos? September 17, 2017 Kiszla: With rout of Dallas, the Broncos put NFL on notice: Their big D is back, nastier than ever September 16, 2017 Kiszla: After wrestling Bears, CU football team itching for steel-cage match with Washington September 15, 2017 Lunch Special: Could you see a situation where Joe Sakic gets fired by Avs? Dennison got bad-mouthed in Denver for being painfully conservative. But he also won a championship ring with a broken-down Peyton Manning and kept the Broncos in the playoff hunt with a battered Siemian until the final month of 2016. The league now has tape on the Broncos, averaging an impressive 33 points through two games. Next, the NFL will go about the business of building a template to slow down Denver. How’s this for a plan? Make daylight for Anderson more scarce and force Siemian to throw more than 35 passes, rather than act as a complimentary piece to the team’s offensive playmakers. We know how the mind of Rico works. He finds satisfaction in trying to muck up the game for three quarters and sneaking away with a 17-14 victory in the end. Buffalo might be beautiful this time of year, but as Broncos coach Vance Joseph is fond of saying, it’s a hard league. And the road ain’t pretty. “This is going to be a true test for our football team,” Jo [...]
4
Like
Save
Rams use big offensive night to beat 49ers 41-39
SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Jared Goff threw for 292 yards and three touchdowns and Todd Gurley ran for two TDs and caught another to help the Los Angeles Rams put up another big offensive performance with a 41-39 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Thursday night. The NFL’s lowest-scoring team last year looks like a completely different outfit this season under first-year coach Sean McVay thanks to vastly improved play by Goff after a rough rookie season as the No. 1 overall pick. The Rams (2-1) have also been helped by the additions of receivers Sammy Watkins and Robert Woods and the play-calling of McVay as they have scored 107 points through three games. That’s the second-most in franchise history, trailing only the 119 by “The Greatest Show on Turf” squad in 2000. This win didn’t come easy as the Rams nearly blew a 15-point lead, giving up two late touchdowns, fumbling a kickoff return and failing to recover an onside kick. But Los Angeles managed to stop a potential game-tying 2-point conversion and then used an offensive pass interference penalty against Trent Taylor and a fourth-down sack by Aaron Donald to stop the Niners after the onside kick. The 49ers (0-3) scored five touchdowns after failing to get any the first two weeks but still came up short in part because a missed extra point by Robbie Gould forced them to try for 2 on their late touchdown. This time it was a tired defense that hurt San Francisco. After facing 79 plays in a 12-9 loss at Seattle on Sunday, the 49ers appeared to run out of gas on the short week as Goff frequently had wide-open receivers, especially on third down. All three of Goff’s touchdown passes came on third down, including a 13-yard pass to Watkins early in the fourth quarter that gave Los Angeles a 41-26 lead. The Rams needed all that offense on a night where Brian Hoyer threw for 332 yards and two touchdowns and ran for another score. QUICK START: The Rams took just 12 seconds to get on the board as Nickell Robey-Coleman intercepted Hoyer on the first play from scrimmage and returned it to the 3-yard line. Gurley ran it in on the next play to give the Rams a 7-0 lead. DROUGHT BUSTER: The 49ers came into the game without a touchdown on the season but broke through in the first quarter with some help from the Rams. After Blake Countess jumped offside on a punt, the Niners took advantage of the second opportunity and drove to score on Hoyer’s 9-yard run 126:43 into the season. That was the longest it took a team to score its first TD since 2006 when both Tampa Bay (143:03) and Oakland (127:10) took more time. FOURTH DOWN CALLS: Both teams drove to the opposing 1 on their opening drives of the second half with help from a Willie Mays-style basket catch by Watkins and a perfect toe drag on the sideline by San Francisco’s Pierre Garcon. But the Rams opted to kick a short field goal, while the 49ers went for it and converted on Carlos Hyde’s 1-yard run that cut Los Angeles’ lead to 27-20. Hyde added a second 1-yard run on fourth down in the fourth quarter. INJURIES: Rams S Lamarcus Joyner left the game in the first half with a hamstring injury. … Los Angeles C John Sullivan injured his groin in the second half and Watkins and Tavon Austin left with concussions. … 49ers S Jaquiski Tartt (concussion), FB Kyle Juszczyk (neck), DL Tank Carradine (ankle) and LB Brock Coyle (concussion) all left with injuries in the second half. UP NEXT: The Rams travel to Dallas on Oct. 1. The 49ers visit Arizona. [...]
0
Like
Save


Broncos | Nuggets | Rockies | Avalanche | Rapids | Outlaws | Mammoth
Mile High | Coors Field | Pepsi Center | DSG Park

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | DMCA Policy