Has Coach Vance Joseph, in back to back wins dispelled calls for his firing? There’s certainly something different about the Broncos since their bye week and with wins over two of the league’s top teams, talks about a post season push have put Vance Joseph’s firing conversations on the back burner.
This week the Denver Broncos hosted the Pittsburgh Steelers who were trying to add to a six-game winning streak. In the last six games, the Steelers have beaten their opponents 197 to 109, averaging 32 points a game (over six games) with the defense allowing an average of only 18 points per game.
Sunday afternoon Pittsburgh’s averages took a hit at Broncos Stadium at Mile High. The Denver Broncos held the Steelers high-powered offense to zero after the first quarter. Pittsburgh’s offense however is far too talented to keep from scoring. With 6:29 left to play in the half, Steelers Kicker Chris Boswell added Pittsburgh’s first points of the game.
Both Denver and Pittsburgh added touchdowns (TD) before the half tying the game. Denver’s TD came on a 10-yard pass from Case Keenum to tight end (TE) Matt LaCrosse, while the Steelers reached into their bag of tricks with a 2-yard TD pass from Kicker Boswell to Left Tackle (Eligable Recevier) Alejandro Villanueva after setting up for field goal with 3 seconds to go before the half.
While Pittsburgh’s offense came out in the second half stalling on their first possession, they managed to take the lead on a single play from their own 3-yard line when Ben Roethlisberger connected with JuJu Smith-Schuster on a 97-yard touchdown pass. The Broncos failed to move the ball on the ensuing drive placing a tremendous amount of pressure on the defense, which they willingly accepted just before a Chris Harris Jr. interception.
The Denver Broncos played great football on all sides of the ball, which is a clear indication that this post bye Broncos team is one not to be taken lightly.
Significant notes from the game: Running back Phillip Lindsey had one rushing TD with 14 carries on 110 yards; linebacker Justin Simmons had 6 tackles and a blocked field goal; Broncos safety Will Parks, knocked the ball out of tight end Xavier Grimble’s hands at the goal-line causing a turnover with the touchback; Denver cornerback Bradley Roby forced fumble on running back James Conner, recovered by Darian Stewart; Denver nose tackle Shelby Harris (game winning) interception of Ben Roethlisberger in the end zone with 1:07 left to play.
Next week the Denver Broncos travel to Cincinnati to face the Bengals, a team who started out much like Denver winning four of their first five games of the season, but have lost five of their last six. The Broncos are looking hungry even after Thanksgiving.