Broncos at Patriots Open Thread/Live Blog | Week 6
The time has finally come. After a 17-day wait between games, the Denver Broncos will take the field on Sunday to battle the New England Patriots.
The Broncos sit at 1-3 and despite their -9 spread according to SportsBetting.com, the Patriots only sit at 2-2. However, the big reason for New England's perceived juggernaut status as the home team is the storied track record of head coach Bill Belichick.
The Broncos hope to become one of only six teams ever to beat a Belichick-led Patriots team coming off a bye. Belichick is 15-5 in games coming off a bye.
If the Broncos are going to pull it off, it'll require the shutting down of New England's top-ranked rushing attack, led by Cam Newton, as well as an error-free game replete with some big plays from Drew Lock, who makes his return to the starting lineup on Sunday.
Join us as we live-blog and discuss DENvsNE here in our weekly Open Thread. Dive into the conversation — it's easy — by simply going to the top of the site and in the bottom right-hand corner of the Mile High Huddle logo, click the follow button.
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What to Watch For
• S Kareem Jackson needs one pass defensed to become the 13th player (9th active) since he entered the league in 2010 to record 100 passes defensed.
• WR Jerry Jeudy needs 50 yards to become the fourth player (T. Glenn, N.E. - 1996; T. McLaurin, Was. - 2019; C. Lamb- Dal. -2020) since 1970 to record at least 50 yards in each of his first five games to start a career and needs 66 yards to become the second Broncos rookie WR to reach 300 receiving yards by his fifth game (Eddie Royal - 2008, 321 yds.).
• K Brandon McManus needs four field goals to tie Jim Turner (1971-79) for the second-most made field goals in team history, one field goal from 50-plus yards to tie Matt Prater (2007-13) for the second-most made in team history, one field goal from 50-plus yards to pass Prater (2007-13) for the second-most made 50-plus-yard field goals in team history (reg. + post.), and 11 points to tie Rich Karlis (1982-88) for the fourth-most points (655) in franchise history. McManus will play his 100th career game on Sunday.
Broncos lose toss. Patriots defer. Lock and the offense will open the game.
Phillip Lindsay breaks the ice with a four-yard gain.
Lock hits Tim Patrick for 41-yard gain on second down.
Lock targets rookie tight end Albert Okwuegbunam down the left sideline, going for the end zone. It was a great throw. Refs initially throw flag for defensive pass interference but pick it up. Incomplete.
Lock throws deep to Jerry Jeudy on 3rd-&-7, yet another great pass but it goes right through the receiver's hands.
McManus enters and drills the 45-yard field goal.
Broncos 3, Patriots 0
Patriots get some traction on the ground but on 3rd-&-2, Shelby Harris tips Newton's pass and DeShawn Williams makes the diving interception.
Broncos in business at the Patriots' 33-yard line.
Two Lindsay runs bring up 3rd-&-2 and Lock goes for the jugular, once again target Okwuegbunam in the end zone, only this time, it wasn't a great throw. Incomplete.
McManus' 44-yard field goal is good.
Broncos 6, Patriots 0
Anthony Chickillo with a massive sack on Newton.
Patriots fail to move the chains on third-and-long. Punt.
Lock starts on his own 9-yard line.
Lindsay starting to heat up a little.
Lock working the middle of the field with the tight ends.
End of quarter
Broncos 6, Patriots 9
Lock connects with Okwuegbunam for an 18-yard gain and three plays later for 11 yards.
Broncos in business after Lock hits Okwuegbunam for a 27-yard pickup, giving Broncos 1st-&-10 from the Patriots' 11-yard line.
Broncos struggle in the red zone, fail to punch it in after an impressive 13-play, 83-yard drive. They have to settle for a field goal after Lock sails it high to Jeudy in the back of the end zone on third down.
McManus is good.
Broncos 9, Patriots 0
Patriots moving the ball. But on a 1st-&-10 from the Broncos' 19-yard line, the snap flies over Newton's head. 15-yard loss. Derrek Tuszka falls on Newton.
On 3rd-&-13, the Broncos pressure Newton, who fires incomplete.
Nick Folk is good from 41 yards out. Patriots get on the board.
Broncos 9, Patriots 3
Lindsay picks up 20 yards on first down.
Broncos cross into Patriots' territory
On 2nd-&-10 from the New England 21-yard line, Lock is sacked for 13-yard loss. Ball is now on the 34-yard line on third down.
Broncos give up, hand-off to Royce Freeman for no gain.
McManus is good from 52 yards.
Broncos 12, Patriots 3
Bradley Chubb strip-sacks Newton, but Patriots recover. 9-yard loss.
Lock hits Jeudy for 16-yard gain.
Lock sacked on 2nd-&-9 for a 12-yard loss. Brings up third-and-long.
On 3rd-&-21, Lock hits Patrick for a 35-yard gain down the right sideline. Huge play!
On 2nd-&-6 from the Patriots' 8-yard line, Lock throws a perfect dime to Okwuegbunam but he can't hold on. Great play by the DB to knock the ball out.
On third down, Lock fires incomplete but Stephon Gilmore flagged for holding. New set of downs from the 3-yard line.
Broncos still can't punch it in. Lock scrambles for the pylon on third down but tackled short out of bounds.
McManus knocks through the chip-shot field goal.
Broncos 15, Patriots 3
Chubb gets another hit on Newton. He's heating up.
Harris gets another tipped pass on second down.
On 3rd-&-3, Newton connects with Ryan Izzo, whose possession of the ball is promptly interrupted by Michael Ojemudia, forcing the fumble. Justin Simmons scoops it up and returns it to the Patriots' 42-yard line.
Fumble is under review by rule. Stands as called. Broncos' ball.
Dalton Risner and Diontae Spencer are both questionable to return with a shoulder injury.
Broncos go three-and-out but McManus saves the day yet again with a 54-yard field goal. He's 6-for-6 on field-goal attempts and 2-for-2 from 50-plus yards out as he moves up the Broncos' record books.
Broncos 18, Patriots 3
On 1st-&-10, Bryce Callahan picks off Newton, giving the Broncos the Patriots' 6-yard line. It's Callahan's first interception as a Bronco.
The review sustains the pick but eliminates the return as Callahan was touched while diving for the interception. Broncos will start on New England's 39-yard line.
On first down, Lindsay rushes for a 30-yard gain, giving him 81 yards on 18 carries as the third quarter comes to a close.
On 3rd-&-10, Lock throws a perfect pass to DaeSean Hamilton, which he drops. Lock fearlessly targeted Gilmore but his receiver let him down.
The Broncos will punt for the first time. Sam Martin rolls in and punts it 31 yards, pinning Patriots on their own 8-yard line.
On 3rd-&-3, the Patriots toss it to James White, who's tackled short by Josey Jewell. Refs give Denver a favorable spot. Punt.
Broncos can't get anything going. Punt.
Newton scrambles, picking up 38 yards, giving Patriots 1st-&-Goal.
Newton sneaks it in on 3rd-&-Goal. Two-Point attempt is no good.
Broncos 18, Patriots 9
After a couple of big-time Lindsay runs, Lock is picked off on 3rd-&-10. Patriots return it to the Broncos' 39-yard line.
That the opening the Broncos could not afford to give New England.
On 1st-&-10, Malik Reed sacks Newton, pushing Patriots back to the 30-yard line.
Brings up 2nd-&-15. Newton throws the screen to Julian Edelman, losing two more yards.
On 3rd-&-15, Newton scrambles and picks up 12 yards, giving Patriots a closer field-goal shot.
Folk connects from 38 yards. It's now a one-score game. Can Vic Fangio forestall a complete fourth-quarter collapse?
On first down, Lock throws deep to Patrick and Jonathan Jones makes a great interception. Lock picked off on back-to-back throws.
Broncos 18, Patriots 12
3:14 to go.
Patriots cross the 50-yard line.
On 4th-&-10 from the Broncos' 30-yard line, the game will be decided. Broncos call time out.
Fangio brings the full zero blitz and it's thrown incomplete!
Broncos' ball with under 60 seconds.
Broncos kneel it and emerge with the win.
Broncos 18, Patriots 12