It was a poor performance from the Denver Broncos offensive line. The unit struggled against the Jacksonville Jaguars, a team without the most robust defensive line.
After the Broncos O-line's rough start in Week 1, it was thought the talent on the New York Giants defensive line was the reason, but it goes deeper than that. The Broncos are failing to execute their matchups, which is a shame because the play designs and blocking concepts have been great.
Eventually, it reaches a point where the player has to win one-on-one, and that isn't happening with any consistency for Denver. The Broncos' trenchmen have to step up their game as a gauntlet of tough defensive lines is just around the corner.
Play 1: Third Quarter | 1:12
LG Dalton Risner and C Lloyd Cushenberry are working a double team, keeping the defender from getting to the quarterback. Fortunately, that ended up being enough on this play as Teddy Bridgewater got rid of the ball rather quickly. However, it still caused Bridgewater to be quicker with his decision, which ended up seeing the pass be a little too high and falling incomplete.
When working a double team, you can't let the defender drive the gap between the two blockers. An effective double team should be able to hold its own and not get pushed back as Risner and Cushenberry do here. Another problem with this was RG Netane Muti being late to pick up the stunting defensive lineman.
With Muti being late, Cushenberry had to split his rep, blocking two defenders. It was good of Muti to wait with a defender on the line, but even after it became apparent that the defender wasn't rushing, the guard still stayed before crashing on the stunt. Again, this is a lack of experience and awareness showing up.
Both LT Garett Bolles and RT Bobby Massie do a good job with their blocks. Bolles did get caught with the spin move, but he kept himself in a decent position not to give up a sack if Bridgewater held onto the ball. Massie received a sound chip from RB Javonte Williams to help him stay in position with his block.
Play 2: Fourth Quarter | 10:31
Massie is climbing to the second level, and it looks like he misses the defender that ends up making the tackle. However, that defender wasn't his responsibility, and Massie did his job. He gives some help to the tight end and then gets to the outside defender on the second level.
Muti and Cushenberry are working a double team on the left 4i-technique, and eventually, Muti is supposed to pass off the defender and make a second-level block. However, there's an issue with Muti staying inline blocking because the length from the defender pushes Muti off his spot. That keeps Muti from getting to the second level and leaving the lane open for the linebacker crashing downhill.
RB Melvin Gordon makes an excellent cut to get to the left and pick up positive yardage instead of getting blown up for a loss. The backside blocking from Bolles, Risner, and TE Noah Fant left a hole for Gordon to pick something up. After Gordon's cut, you want the backside defender to make the tackle and not someone else, which is what happens.
Play 3: Fourth Quarter | 9:01
The lack of awareness on this play from Risner is baffling. As he is coming up behind Massie, who is getting blown up, Risner has to adjust his path to not get tripped up. He then singles out the outside defender, whom the running back should be picking up.
With the running back and Risner taking the outside defender, a rusher can come unblocked, forcing Bridgewater to adjust and get rid of the ball. Massie also was unable to recover, and his defender could have put pressure on Bridgewater as well if he hadn't tripped. This was a great play by Bridgewater to make small, elusive movements in the pocket before firing the ball downfield, which ended up drawing a pass-interference penalty against the Jaguars.
Play 4: Fourth Quarter | 8:17
Have to give major credit to Williams for getting something positive out of this play. Both Cushenberry and Risner are beaten off the snap and get turned around before Williams even has the ball. Williams can make a defender miss, and with solid blocking from Muti, Massie, Bolles, and TE Albert Okwuegbunam, the rookie is able to gain positive yards.
There is a good recovery from Risner after getting beaten so badly at the start. He re-engages the defender and keeps him from cutting back to make a play on Williams. This was a bad play, nonetheless, and Denver has to get better from Risner and Cushenberry.
Play 5: Fourth Quarter | 6:40
Risner had multiple issues when pulling this game, which he usually does pretty well with. However, in this play, the problem isn't his fault, but rather, it's Fant's fault. Fant is a split-second late firing off the snap and can't generate any push on the defender, leaving him right in Risner's pulling path, so they get slightly tangled up.
As a result, Risner is a split second late to get the pull block or even be in the proper position for it. It made life easy for the defender to use the momentum of the engagement to shed the block and be part of the tackle on the running back. While it was a bad look for Risner, especially with throwing his hands up after, the fault here is on Fant.
It also is worth noting that Tim Patrick had his block shed at such a bad time. He is one of the better blocking wide receivers on the team, but he has to sustain that block a little longer. With the defensive back shedding Patrick's block, it prevented Williams from bouncing it outside.
Follow Erick on Twitter @ErickTrickel.
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