One of the most hyped games of this NFL season, thanks to a certain Mr. Tebow, will take place Saturday night in Foxboro. The Broncos, who are coming off a thrilling win over the Steelers, will take on the top seeded Patriots.
The Pats’ already beat the Broncos this year 41-23, which came in Denver in Week 15. That ended the Broncos’ six game losing streak, but did not keep them out of the playoffs.
This time the game means much more, as it is for a berth in the AFC Championship game.
New England Patriots
The Patriots come into this game as the #1 seed in the AFC, and winners of their last eight games. They are favorites in this game, and for good reason. The only problem I see with New England was their schedule. During their eight game winning streak to end the season, they only played one playoff team, which was Denver.
Earlier in the season the Pats lost their other two games against playoff teams, the Steelers and the Giants. These games were close, but the Steelers know that close in the playoffs is not good enough.
In the first meeting between the teams, the Patriots’ offense torched Denver’s defense. Specifically, Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski were the ones who dominated. They combined for 13 receptions for 182 yards and a touchdown. Finding a way to shut down this tight end tandem should be a major focus for Denver heading into the game. To go along with the passing game, the Patriots combined for 141 rushing yards.
The Patriots have everything going for them in this game: they are the top seed in the AFC, they have home field advantage, and they have already beaten the Broncos once this year. That should make them the favorites, but the Steelers were favorites last week and we all saw how that went.
Tim Tebow. That right there could sum up the hype around this game, and it is warranted. Tebow threw the now infamous touchdown pass to Demaryius Thomas in overtime that sent the Steelers home.
Based on the last time these two teams played, it should be clear that the Patriots are favorites, but that is being reconsidered after Denver’s performance last week. The offense looked dead in the last three games of the regular season, but came to life last week against Pittsburgh.
The defense was also struggling, especially in the Patriots game. The Pats’ racked up 41 points, but Denver did lose three fumbles. Those turnovers turned out to be a major difference in the game, and they certainly did not help the defense’s chances of stopping Tom Brady.
Tim Tebow will need to build off of his passing game from last week. He threw for 316 yards against a top-ten passing defense, and now he goes up against the Patriots’ 31st ranked pass defense. Even though the Evil Emperor Bill Belicheck hired former Broncos coach Josh McDaniels to be an offensive assistant/spy, the Broncos should be able to rack up a significant amount of yards through the air.
If the Broncos can take care of the ball and not turn it over, there is no reason why they could not win this game. The Patriots defense has not been good all year, and this will show in the game. The Pats’ have lost in the first round in the past two seasons, and I think it will be three. Why not?
Denver 27 | Patriots 24
Denver Broncos at New England Patriots Game Info
- Broncos-Patriots Date, Time, and TV: Saturday, January 14th at 8:00 ET on CBS
- Broncos-Patriots Announcers: Jim Nantz and Phil Simms
- Broncos-Patriots Point Spread: Patriots -13.5
- Broncos-Patriots Over-Under: 51