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Despite bottom-of-the-league production recently, Vic Fangio is adamant changes to the Broncos' offense aren’t on the way

Zac Stevens Avatar
October 22, 2021

CLEVELAND — The first three weeks of the season, the Denver Broncos’ offense wasn’t just competent, it was pretty damn good.

Averaging over 25 points per game, the Broncos had a borderline top-10 offense in the NFL. Teddy Bridgewater was rolling. Pat Shurmur was praised. The Denver Broncos were undefeated, thanks in large part to their offense.

Oh how the last four games—capped off with an incredibly disappointing Thursday night game against the Cleveland Browns on primetime television—wiped out their hot start.

Since their undefeated 3-0 start, the Broncos have scored 7, 19, 24 and 14 points. Their 16 points per game during their four-game losing streak would be the third-worst in the NFL if they produced that throughout the entire season.

Averaging just over two touchdowns per game only gives them a better offense than the Houston Texans and the New York Jets. Heck, even the winless Detroit Lions, along with the Miami Dolphins and the Chicago Bears, are averaging more points per game throughout the season than the Broncos are in their past four games.

Yet, despite the bottom-of-the-league production, there won’t be any changes to Denver’s play caller on the offensive side of the ball.

“No,” Vic Fangio simply said, when asked if he would consider making any changes to the Broncos’ offensive play caller after Denver 17-14 loss to the Browns on Thursday night.

For now, Shurmur is safe. The veteran coach will remain Denver’s offensive coordinator and play caller.

Against the Browns, the Broncos had their worst offensive game of the season in total yards (223), rushing yards (41) and first down (15). They had their second-worst game of the year in passing yards (182) and total points (14).

At halftime, Denver had 76 total yards, two first downs and zero points.

“In the first half, we just could not get anything going,” Fangio stated. “The quickest way to get out of that in the first half or anytime you are in that is to convert some third downs and give yourself a new set of downs to get a running game going to get a first and second down passing game going. We did neither.”

“We did not find a rhythm in the run game well enough in the first and second down passing game. We did not convert on third down,” the head coach continued, detailing Denver’s offensive struggles. “When you do not do that, you do not get enough plays. We were not getting enough three-and-outs or stopping them quick enough. It is a problem. It is a team-wide problem.”

Fangio is certainly right—the entire Broncos team didn’t play nearly well enough against the beat-up Browns. But there is one position more important than the rest of them.

Battling through two injuries, Teddy Bridgewater was outplayed by former Broncos-starting quarterback Case Keenum in the first half. However, despite a 45 passer rating and his fifth interception in the previous seven quarters, Fangio never considered making a change at quarterback and putting Drew Lock in the game.

Bridgewater came out of halftime and proved his coach right as he led a 13-play, 79-yard touchdown drive to start the second half. Teddy bounced back from his rough first half by going 16-of-23 for 129 yards and 2 touchdowns.

“I thought he played good, especially there in the second half,” Fangio stated. “I don’t think Teddy’s injuries, from my vantage point, effected him that much.”

However, it was too little too late as the scoreless first half was too much to overcome. Despite the Broncos’ fourth-straight loss, Fangio will not be making a change at quarterback.

“I thought [Teddy] was courageous and he’s our quarterback,” the head coach said after the game, putting his faith in Bridgewater moving forward.

Over the past four weeks, the Broncos have had one of the worst offenses in the NFL. Despite that, don’t expect any major changes to the Broncos’ offensive side of the ball.

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