In their 20-13 Week 11 win over the Miami Dolphins, the Denver Broncos finally managed to get their offense going, which helped out the defense. It was easily the Broncos' best performance of the season as a complete team, but they still had some issues.
Hopefully, Denver can still figure out how to minimize those issues and keep chugging along for the rest of the season as it did in this game.
On an individual level, almost everyone played at a good level, which led to a couple of firsts for these grades, but more on that later. Let us get into the grades, but remember to check the video above for the MVP and highest-graded Bronco from Week 11.
Justin Simmons | S: 89.8
The game-sealing interception was just a fantastic play by Simmons. He started off the season rough but has since bounced back and in a big way. While after the first four games he made it seem like last year was a fluke, Simmons is telegraphing to the front office that he deserves to get a competitive multi-year extension, but also showcasing that his role in the defense really matters.
Bradley Chubb | OLB: 88.7
Up until this game, Chubb had been a major disappointment with a third of his season's pressures coming against the New York Jets in Week 4. He looked stale as a run blocker over the preceding few weeks and only amassed eight QB pressures in the last three games. However, Chubb was back in good form again, notching 11 pressures and being a force against the run.
Nick Vannett | TE: 84.5
The Broncos had high hopes for Vannett when they brought him in to be their blocking tight end. Up until now, he has been nothing short of a disappointment. However, Vannett finally showed why he was so valued as a blocker and also just what he can offer up as a receiver.
Phillip Lindsay | RB: 84.3
It was good to see Lindsay finally look fully healthy again after just not looking like the same player the previous couple of weeks, though the O-line did him no favors over that span. In Week 11, his burst seemed to be back at 100% and he was hard to slow down for the Dolphins' defense.
A.J. Bouye | CB: 42.2
This was Bouye's fifth game of the season and he struggled, especially early on. He only allowed three catches on five targets, but one went for a touchdown. There were other times his coverage was loose but was missed by the Dolphin's quarterback.
Melvin Gordon | RB: 54.6
For the first time ever, the negatives on offense still finished with a positive impact on the game but just happened to be the lowest-graded players on that side of the ball. Gordon's his late fumble really dropped his grade. He ran hard in this game and picked up good yards, but it all comes back to that potentially game-changing fumble in the fouth quarter.
Bryce Callahan | CB: 57.9
This was one of the worst games from Callahan this season, and it has quite a bit to do with his run defense. His size issues showed up there, which isn't a surprise at all. In coverage, he allowed only three catches on eight targets which continues his trend of excellent play in coverage.
Drew Lock | QB: 70.4
Examine the grade before hating on Lock. The QB played a solid game and just barely ended up with the second-worst grade on offense for players who played qualifying snaps. It wasn't a perfect performance by any means, with an interception, some sloppy footwork, and panic in the pocket at times when no pressure was there.
However, it was a game that you can hang your hat on with his performance and one that can help the Broncos win games if Lock can do it consistently. Lock has not shown consistency but it is much-needed going forward.
Others Noteworthy Grades
For the first time ever, the 'other' category contains only players who performed among the Positive. Below are the two players on offense and on defense who were the next highest-graded players outside of the positive grades and MVP.
DeShawn Williams | NT: 84.9
The big boy has earned himself a role on the defensive line going forward. He still has issues with consistency to keep him from being a starter, when everyone is healthy, but he has shown to be valuable depth and continues to get better each week.
Garett Bolles | LT: 83.8
Bolles has been the MVP of the offense this season and it isn't really close. The player that we saw flashes of during his first three seasons is finally showing the needed consistency to stay as the left tackle. Denver would be making a mistake if i doesn't keep Bolles in town.
Malik Reed | OLB: 82.4
This was Reed’s best and most complete game. It was the best he's looked as a run defender and not just by avoiding blocks to make a play. He also got his season-high six pressures, 1.5 of which were sacks, and they all were pretty high quality.
Reed's previous four sacks were not the best quality as he either went unblocked or was considered a coverage sack, but that wasn't the case in this game.
Tim Patrick | WR: 81.7
If looking at just what he did as a receiver, Patrick would've been the MVP for this game. However, all aspects are factored in and Patrick as a run blocker was not so good. He was not up to his standard outside which did hurt some outside runs.