Reid Fischer's World of Rants

Looking at the sports world through orange colored glasses

Worst. Loss. Ever.

Posted by mizzou1028 on October 24, 2010


Photo by Jack Dempsey, Associated Press


Broncos fans deserve better than this.  The headline is not an exaggeration.  This has to rank as the worst loss the Denver Broncos have ever had.  59-14?  At home?  Against your division rival?  Against a team that came in 2-4?  A team that scored nine measly points last week against the previously winless 49ers?  Sure, the  Broncos have had some doozies over the years (the playoff losses to the Colts and the disastrous Super Bowls of the 80s come to mind), every team has, but this was catastrophic.  The Broncos gave up 59 points THROUGH THREE QUARTERS.  They were down 38-0 with 7:58 remaining in the FIRST HALF.  Some other numbers that tell the story:

– The 59 points represent both the most points scored in Raiders history and the most points allowed in Broncos history.

– The Broncos allowed a staggering 508 yards of total offense, including 328 on the ground.

– Darren McFadden rushed for 165 yards and three touchdowns, which is bad enough.  He averaged 10.3 yards a carry.  Think about that.  That means he was on average getting a first down every time he touched the ball.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg.  This thing was an avalanche coming down the mountain from the word go.  A 43 yard touchdown pass to Zach Miller.  A 30 yard interception return by Chris Johnson on Denver’s first play from scrimmage.  A fumble by Demariyus Thomas on Denver’s second play from scrimmage.  One thing led to another before anyone could blink the game was over before it began.  Watching this game, it was easy to Denver’s confidence deflate.  There was no emotion on the sideline from anyone, coach or player.   What we ended up with was a rivalry game where one team didn’t hold up their end of the bargain.

My biggest question is how does something like this even happen?  NFL defenses don’t give up 59 points in three quarters of play, they just don’t.  If this were a high school game a running clock would have been instituted.  The Raiders pulled their starters after three quarters, otherwise I’m pretty sure they could have taken a good stab at the NFL record of 73 points (Chicago Bears – 1940 NFL Championship).  This brings up a side question: WHY did the Broncos leave their starters in the entire game?  This made zero sense considering risk of injury in a meaningless situation by the fourth quarter.  Despite leaving starters in, the Broncos gave up an embarrassing amount of points to a team that’s not even good.  The Raiders are under .500.  They are not considered to be a contender in any way.  This a game where if the Broncos had given the same effort they did last week against the Jets, they would have won, perhaps handily.

This game reflects a big problem for the Denver Broncos.  Since starting 6-0 last year, the Broncos are a pathetic 4-13.  What we saw today was a lack of preparation, lack of intensity, lack of attention to detail, and pretty much a lack of anything.  For the Broncos to come out at home against a division rival, in a game they had to have, and give that kind of embarrassing performance, it has to speak to larger problem at hand.  I have been a defender of Josh McDaniels (one of the few), but even I can’t find any way to justify this.  I’m not sure if the large problem at hand is a personnel issue, play calling issue, weekly preparation issue or something else.  All I know is Broncos fans expect and deserve better than this.

This performance was so bad that I would have shut the game off in the second quarter if I wasn’t getting paid to watch it.  It would have marked the first time in my life I would have turned the Broncos off by choice.  I have sat through blowouts and bad losses, some of them in person, and have never left the stadium early or shut off the television, no matter how bad it got.  I remember sitting in the south stands at old Mile High Stadium with my dad in 1994, watching a similar contest that the Broncos lost to the Raiders 48-16.  In that game the Broncos wore throwback uniforms from the mid-60s and played at a level matching the 60s Broncos.  Today the Broncos managed the same feat without the 60s attire.  Wade Phillips was the head coach that day in 1994.  The fans threw things at him as he left the field after the game.  He was fired at the end of the season, having lasted just two years.  To my knowledge no one threw anything at Josh McDaniels today, but with the Broncos at 2-5, we might see another Broncos coach canned after two seasons if this doesn’t turn around.  I’ve been behind him since he’s been here, but this is unacceptable.  The honeymoon period is officially over Josh.  You need to fix this.  Now.  I don’t care how, just fix it.  Broncos fans deserve better than this.


2 Responses to “Worst. Loss. Ever.”

  1. Doug Baker said

    Wow, that was brutal. And get this — I had Darren McFadden on my bench in my fantasy league because even though I knew he’d play, I figured he’d split carries with Bush and/or not be 100% effective coming off the hamstring injury. And I might end up losing this week as a result. Oh well, at least it wasn’t a dumb decision, I don’t think. Who would have thought this would happen!

    I wish I could get paid to watch games! 🙂

    Nice post.

  2. mizzou1028 said

    Doug, it’s obviously easy to debate fantasy decisions in hindsight. What cost me my matchup was starting the Ravens’ defense, but how could I have anticipated them giving up 34 points to Buffalo? You’re not the only I know of who benched McFadden but of course that’s frustrating!

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