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Broncos may stop deferring when winning the toss

SAN DIEGO, CA - OCTOBER 13:  Hunter Henry #86 of the San Diego Chargers makes a catch for a touchdown in front of  Chris Harris #25 of the Denver Broncos to take a 7-0 lead during the first quarter at Qualcomm Stadium on October 13, 2016 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) Getty Images

Teams with great defenses prefer to start the game on defense, with the goal of: (1) engineering a three-and-out; (2) finagling a short field; and (3) getting on the scoreboard; and (4) repeat, repeat, repeat.

The Broncos have a great defense, which has caused them to defer possession until the second half when winning the toss. Last night, the Broncos won the toss, deferred, kicked off, and then watched the Chargers drive the ball 75 yards in 12 plays, culminating in a touchdown pass from Philip Rivers to Hunter Henry.

The same thing happened five days ago, when the Broncos won the toss, deferred, kicked off, and then watched the Falcons drive 75 yards in nine plays for a touchdown.

The Broncos lost both games, and they now may lose the defer-when-winning-the-toss approach.

“That came up, but part of that is you want to control it in the second half,” interim coach Joe DeCamillis told reporters on Friday, a day after the 21-13 loss to the Chargers. “[That is] part of the reason you defer in my opinion. That’s been discussed and [coach Gary Kubiak] is an offensive guy and that was his decision. That was something that we’ve talked about quite a bit, but we’ll talk about it this week as we always do, as far as some of the game management things go. I still think with our defense, I’m going to put my money on them stopping them every time to be honest with you.”

The Broncos won the toss and deferred in one other game this year: Week Four at Tampa. The Denver defense intercepted quarterback Jameis Winston, and the Denver offense scored a touchdown on the next play.

In the three other games played this year — all Denver wins — the Broncos lost the toss, the opponent deferred, the Broncos received the opening kickoff, and the Broncos won each game.

To summarize, the Broncos are 3-0 when the receive the opening kickoff, 1-2 when they kick. Both losses came from the Broncos giving up a first-drive touchdown after kickoff off.

So maybe the Broncos should be doing more than talking about changing their approach to winning the opening toss.

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9 Responses to “Broncos may stop deferring when winning the toss”
  1. td30 says: Oct 14, 2016 4:18 PM

    You missed the point of deferring completely. They do it so they can try and score before the half, and then get the ball in the second half and score again to swing the game

    They arent losing because of the decision to defer. Theyre losing because the defense isnt playing legendary to make up for the terrible running game and modest passing game.

    It honestly seems like the defense has taken their foot off the gas after wrecking Cam in week 1 and getting all the butt hurt complainers being incessant

  2. elyasm says: Oct 14, 2016 4:30 PM

    Theyre losing because the defense isnt playing legendary to make up for the terrible running game and modest passing game.
    ————————————————————
    It’s very hard for a defense to play at a legendary level when the offense can’t consistently put together drives to keep the defense off the field.

  3. athwartships says: Oct 14, 2016 4:31 PM

    I am pretty sure this is not why the are losing games and if they think that, then are missing the point of deferring.

    Uh, we are losing…we better…hmmm…receive when win the coin toss…yea.

    How very special teams thinking of them (oh wait)

  4. Getoffmylawn! says: Oct 14, 2016 4:42 PM

    The greatest defense in history and they can’t stop the run. Looks like both Super Bowl teams from last year will be watching the playoffs from home this season.

  5. osiris33 (bandwagon since 1976) says: Oct 14, 2016 7:52 PM

    They HAD a great defense last year. This year they can’t stop anybody

  6. ikeclanton says: Oct 14, 2016 8:47 PM

    The Patriots initiated the the now popular choice to defer when winning the coin toss about 8-10 years ago, when just about no one did it.

    They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but as many people point out on PFT, the Patriots “system” is magic–it clearly doesn’t work for everybody.

  7. yourunclerico says: Oct 15, 2016 9:14 AM

    ?? the donkeys have a great defense?
    sue didnt look like it on Thursday when the Chargers, sorry. the 1-4 Chargers shoved that “great defense” back for multiple 10 min drives!

  8. yourunclerico says: Oct 15, 2016 9:16 AM

    td30 says:
    Oct 14, 2016 4:18 PM

    It honestly seems like the defense has taken their foot off the gas after wrecking Cam in week 1 and getting all the butt hurt complainers being incessant
    ============
    No, they are still playing as dirty as they always do. they are just getting called on it more often.

  9. yourunclerico says: Oct 15, 2016 9:18 AM

    Getoffmylawn! says:
    Oct 14, 2016 4:42 PM
    The greatest defense in history and they can’t stop the run. Looks like both Super Bowl teams from last year will be watching the playoffs from home this season.
    ================
    ??? the Bears and Seahawks are not mentioned in this story. you surely arent referring to the DONKEYS as having the greatest defense in history, right? or are you really that delusional?

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