Broncos Live Report: Titans at Broncos

Published: December 8, 2013, 12:28 pm, by Paul Klee

FINAL: Broncos 51, Titans 28.

—Heading to the press conference, where Peyton Manning surely will remark about playing in the cold weather. He had 397 passing yards and four touchdowns. Some passes wobbled.

—The Broncos finished the game on a 41-7 run. George Karl would dig it.

—Knowshon Moreno with the shoe-lace catch might have been the catch of the day.

—Montee Ball scored on the next play. Productive 1-2 backfield, just what Broncos were hoping for.

—Injuries to Orlando Franklin (he returned), Julius Thomas (didn’t see much of him in the second half), Wes Welker (looked like a concussion) and Wesley Woodyard (lingering effects from the Dallas injury) make this a less-than-perfect day for the Broncos. 

—From the record book: Broncos became the fifth team in NFL history with five games of at least 50 points.

—From the record book: Manning set a franchise record for single-game completions. In the cold, or otherwise.

—From the record book: the Broncos set a new single-season scoring record…. with three games left.

—From the record book: The Gazette sets a franchise record for photos in a live blog. 

—Can this banged-up Broncos defense be trusted in the playoffs?

—Will it matter if No. 18 continues being No. 18?

—Shout-out to the 70,000-plus who witnessed the Arctic Bowl in person.

We’ll be back here with a Live Report on Thursday night.

Klee

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Broncos 44, Titans 28 — 9:12 left in fourth quarter

—Big game from Von Miller today. Minus the roughing-the-passer penalty, which figures to result in a well-earned fine from the NFL, he’s been disruptive.

—Miller forced that fumble by Chris Johnson.

—The Titans are imploding.

—The fans that are still here… aren’t going anywhere.

—Montee Ball is averaging 5.2 yards per carry. Solid day from him, aside from that drop.

—The Broncos just broke the franchise record for points in a season. They have 508. The old record was 501. Thought that might happen this season.

—Time to work on a column. 

Back in a few.

Klee

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Broncos 34, Titans 28 — End of third quarter

—Tickets that went unused today: 5,691.

—With a defensive secondary that has Omar Bolden, Kayvon Webster and Quentin Jammer playing meaningful snaps in the second half, the Broncos aren’t winning a Super Bowl. Better get  healthy over the next month.

—The Broncos are what we thought they were: Going as far as Peyton Manning can take them.

—There are more and more empty seats as the game moves forward. The fans that stuck around, however, are making quite a ruckus.

—The official prediction was: Broncos 34, Titans 30. We missed it by a quarter (and two points).

Back in a few.

Klee

BRONCOS TITANS

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Broncos 34, Titans 21 — 7:34 left in third quarter

—It’s almost as if Peyton Manning got fed up with the cold-weather talk and wanted to disprove it.

—He’s 29-for-45 (45!) with three touchdowns and a QB rating of 104.4.

—Terrance Knighton’s interception was the first by a Broncos defensive tackle since…. Kevin Vickerson in 2010.

—Mile High is roughly 80-percent full at this point. Most of the empties are in club level.

—Here’s a hunch Peyton Manning is only playing the first half — if anything — when the Broncos travel to Oakland in the regular-season finale.

Back in a few.

Klee

Ten.Prater

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Titans 21, Broncos 20 — Halftime

—Great view of goalpost from where Ramsey and Klee are sitting. Matt Prater (above, courtesy expert photographer Christian Murdock) cleared the crossbar by… maybe four feet? Good from 64 yards, a new NFL record.

—Peyton Manning is putting on a show. Can we put to rest the cold-weather theory?

—Don’t believe he’s missed a pass today. Demaryius Thomas and Julius Thomas both dropped touchdown passes. Montee Ball dropped a first-down pass. Wes Welker dropped a (tough) first-down pass. And Manning is still 24-for-38 with two touchdowns and 96.3 rating.

—The concession lines are about to be packed. Better choice when it’s 20 degrees: beer or hot cocoa?

—Giddy, festive crowd today, in spite of the Arctic air. But there’s a girlfriend in Section 315 who is ready to go home.

—OK, so that’s the good part. Here’s the bad part for the Broncos: the Titans are writing the blueprint for how to upset the Broncos in a playoff game at home. Get a special-teams touchdown. Complete a couple long passes. Test the shaky Broncos’ secondary. Let Peyton do his thing… and beat the rest of the team.

—The Broncos defense currently is without Bailey, Woodyard, Moore and Vickerson. Those are four big pieces.

—Wes Welker was woozy. We’ve probably seen the last of him today. 

—There seem to be a lot of pigeons on the field today. Fearless pigeons.

Back in a few.

Klee

Ten.Cold

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Titans 14, Broncos 10 — End of first quarter

—Keep your cold-weather stats and damning records. It’s hard to believe anyone can watch Peyton in this first quarter and say he stinks in the cold. 

—In high-pressure games? OK, that’s fair, given the playoff record. But cold weather? Nah.

—Don’t know the guy pictured above. But he speaks for the other 70,000 in attendance today.

—Thought that should’ve been a TD for Eric Decker.

—Boy, the rest of the AFC is quite mediocre. 

—Peyton Manning’s ankle looks OK.

—That’s two TD receptions for Wes Welker — if it stands. He has 11 this season, a career-high.

—It didn’t stand. The officials overturned another call against the Broncos. The officials hate the Broncos!

—Actually, it was a good call. Welker’s catch tickled the turf.

Back in a few.

Klee

Ten.Camera

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Titans 14, Broncos 7 — 4:31 left in first quarter

—When it’s this frigid, I gotta wonder. When Peyton is going through his pre-snap song-and-dance routine, are any of his linemen thinking, “Just snap the damn ball!”

—Also, Peyton might throw for 400 yards today. The Titans’ early lead is giving the Broncos a reason to throw, for one.

—Peyton Manning wanted to go for it on 4th-and-1 on the 45. John Fox said no.

—Too bad Trindon Holliday is inactive today. Otherwise, this could really get real.

—Can the Broncos defense stop anybody? It’s December, and there’s a good chance the defense isn’t getting healthier.

Back in a few.

Klee

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Titans 14, Broncos 7 — 7:02 left in first quarter

—Titans fullback Quinn Johnson “shhhsssss” the crowd after Tennessee scores. The crowd didn’t like it.

—John Fox goes it for it on fourth down — twice! — and the Broncos score. The crowd did like it.

—The Broncos set better picks than the Nuggets, even.

—The Titans answer with a 90-plus yard return. David Ramsey could’ve run through that hole.

—Feeling oh-so-good about that prediction. 

Back in a few.

Klee

Ten.Para

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Tennessee Titans (5-7) at Denver Broncos (10-2) — Sports Authority Field at Mile High — Kickoff (2:05 p.m.) 

—New rule: Only the guys that jumped out of a plane (above) can complain about the temperature.

—The Broncos defense is being introduced.

—I remember a Broncos game, at old Mile High, where a snowball fight broke out. Everybody won. Except the Raiders.

—The stadium is only about 40-percent full right now.

—Go Browns. Even sportswriters prefer home games in the playoffs.

—The Titans/Oilers have owned this series. The all-time series record: Titans/Oilers 21 wins. Broncos 14 wins. One tie.

—Official prediction: Broncos 34, Titans 30.

—Thermoses are not allowed in Mile High. But there’s a guy in Section 316 with a flask. Drink up, friend.

Back in a few. Klee

Ten.Tarp

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Tennessee Titans (5-7) at Denver Broncos (10-2) — Sports Authority Field at Mile High — One hour until kickoff (2:05 p.m.)

—The tarp was on the field (above) to protect against the snow earlier this week. It snowed again this morning, but only for a minute. Tarp’s gone now.

—Posed this question in today’s column: Wouldn’t it be handy to find a spot for Gary Kubiak in the Broncos’ front office? The Texans stink because of their quarterback play. But Kubiak helped build a playoff-caliber roster. Given the Broncos’ recent (shaky) drafts, his eye for talent would seem to be an asset at Dove Valley.

—Not to be outdone by Rob Bironas, Matt Prater is booting 54-yard field goals.

—Notables on the Broncos’ inactives list: Champ Bailey, Derek Wolfe, Trindon Holliday and Ronnie Hillman.

—The snow scene in Philadelphia is truly something to behold.

—The Patriots are in the third quarter at Cleveland. The Patriots haven’t scored in Cleveland. The logical conclusion: Tom Brady stinks in cold weather.

Back in a few.

Klee 

Ten.Dogs

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Tennessee Titans (5-7) at Denver Broncos (10-2) — Sports Authority Field at Mile High — 90 minutes until kickoff (2:05 p.m.)

—Jim Nantz and Phil Simms, who are on the call for CBS today, are in the warmth of the media hospitality room, watching the Blizzard Bowl in Philadelphia.

Kansas City is up big on the Redskins. Cue the Chiefs overhype.

—Titans kicker Rob Bironas is booting 54-yard field goals down on the field.

—Broncos defensive tackle Mitch Unrein is stretching in the endzone. He’s sleeveless. That’s how they roll in Eaton. 

Mike Klis of the Denver Post says Champ Bailey and Trindon Holliday won’t play today.

—The press box at Mile High is quieter than usual. Some of the regulars are covering other games (San Francisco, etc.).

—Tell you who loves this weather. These guys (above) love this weather. Pictured from right to left, Moses (who is on house arrest after digging through the trash), the Maya (who thinks we should be fishing) and Deeto (who doesn’t know where he is). This weather is for the dogs, and they are cool with that.

Back in a few.

Klee

Ten.Field

Broncos Gameday Live Report — Tennessee Titans (5-7) at Denver Broncos (10-2) — Sports Authority Field at Mile High — 2 hours until kickoff (2:05 p.m.)

 Afternoon, everyone. Paul Klee joining you for another Live Report. Let’s set the scene…

—Rule No. 1 of today’s Live Report: This is the only time we’ll write the word “cold.” We will, however, use words like frigid and numb and frostbitten and frozen.  According to my favorite security guard, it’s 10 degrees on the field.

—But the sun is out, so it feels like 12.

—I think this is a scary game for the Broncos. The Titans share some of the same characteristics as the teams that have beaten the Broncos, namely a positive turnover ratio (plus-2). 

—The grounds crew is practicing with the American flag on the field (above).

—The tailgate lots were still mostly empty when I arrived at 11 a.m.

—There’s only one player on the field: Julius Thomas. I think that’s Julius Thomas. He’s bundled up.

—John Fox is back on the sideline today. Here’s today’s column on why Fox is more important to the Broncos’ Super Bowl hopes than he’s given credit for.  

—The Gazette will have a full staff at Mile High this afternoon: Three photographers, fellow columnist David Ramsey and Klee.

—This is the second-to-last home game for the Broncos. This season is soaring by.

Feel free to send emails with any questions/observations/threats (paul.klee@gazette.com). I’ll get ‘em posted on here. Back in a few.

Twitter: @Klee_Gazette