Broncos DL Derek Wolfe: 'Getting Embarrassed Like That Breaks Your Heart'
For some of the defensive holdovers in the Denver Broncos locker room, the last two and a half years have been brutal. These are players who've been to the top of the mountain, holdovers from Super Bowl 50.
They've had to carry the Broncos through multiple years of offensive ineptitude and a quarterback musical chairs. Across the board, these players on both sides of the ball put in the work, invest the time and when it doesn't translate to wins, it's tough.
It's even more sobering for guys like Derek Wolfe when he and his team get shellacked at home by the Division-rival Kansas City Chiefs to the tune of 30-6.
"Our days are long, our practices are long, we put in so much work and to go out there and get embarrassed like that. Man, it breaks your heart," Wolfe said Monday via Denver7's Troy Renck.
Undoubtedly. The players are at a loss for words. In the wake of the depredations of the last couple of years, what more can be said?
Usually, when a team reaches this point, there's nothing left to do but fire everyone and start over. But with the unique ownership situation the Broncos are in, that's unlikely to happen. All fans, and players seemingly, can do is bear down and expect more of the same.
After all, the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. As the quarterback goes, so goes the team. Joe Flacco, in his current state, is a 2-5 starting quarterback. So long as he remains the starter, the Broncos can expect more of the same.
Derek Wolfe was a part of four AFC West Champion teams and contributed to one World Championship. He's had a good run since arriving as a Broncos second-round draft pick back in 2012, despite the recent past.
Wolfe has had to come to terms with seeing brothers in arms get old and retire, get injured and in some cases, get shipped off to other teams. With the October 29 trade deadline rapidly approaching, rumors have been swirling around the Broncos and speculation has run rampant. Wolfe couldn't care less.
"That's the thing, I try not to get too caught up on the stuff going on upstairs and whatever is going on in the locker room, I try not to get too caught up in that either. I just try to do my job every day," Wolfe said via Renck.
As someone who's covered this team for as long as Wolfe has been a Bronco, my heart goes out to him. Wolfe works his tail off and sets the tone for his teammates.
I also feel for Broncos Country. I wish I could tell you things were looking up. But it'll have to get worse before it gets better.
The best hope this team has is for Drew Lock to be named the starter coming out of their Week 10 bye. Lock is unlikely to alter the ultimate destiny of this team's 2019 season, beginning his career as a starter in Week 11 but getting him live-bullet experience and allowing him to develop on the field of play, with OC Rich Scangarello, is the best hope for this team to experience a turnaround next year.
What does that mean for vets like Derek Wolfe, who's in a contract year? Needless to say, the implications are grim.