DEN-CHI Grades: Osweiler gets it done for Broncos
Here are the top takeaways and highest-graded players from the Broncos’ 17-15 win versus the Bears.
– We got our first long look at what life could be like without Peyton Manning in Denver, with QB Brock Osweiler (-0.5) making his first career start. It wasn’t a stellar performance, but Osweiler played well enough to lead the Broncos to the win, and he should be able to keep Denver in the playoff race. The most notable aspect of his play was the difference in his performance when kept clean compared to when he was pressured. Without pressure, Osweiler completed 18-of-20 pass attempts for 225 yards and two touchdowns for a +1.2 pass grade. But when pressured, he completed just two passes on 13 dropbacks for 25 yards and a -1.7 pass grade, and was sacked five times.
– Evan Mathis (+3.8) had a slow start to the year, but he has come on strong down the middle-stretch of the season, and yesterday was a continuation of that. He allowed two total pressures (-1.1 pass blocking), one of which was a really bad-looking sack, as NT Bruce Gaston (-1.2) bull-rushed right through him to the quarterback. However, he once again excelled as a run blocker (+4.7 run blocking). He still has a below average pass block grade on the season, but he has the highest run blocking grade of any guard in the league—and it’s not particularly close.
– It was an interesting display of coverage for Denver, that was somewhat boom-or-bust. Four players combined for six pass defenses, yet those same four players also allowed five completions of 20+ yards. LB Danny Trevathan (+3.8) led the team with a +2.1 coverage grade, including his interception off a Jay Cutler pass, and CB Bradley Roby (+1.5) was not far off, with two pass defenses and one reception allowed for 2 yards.
ILB Danny Trevathan (+3.8)
LG Evan Mathis (+3.8)
OLB Von Miller (+3.7)
TE Vernon Davis (+2.8)
SS T.J. Ward (+2.3)
– It was a mediocre game from QB Jay Cutler (+0.2), as he threw one bad interception and forced several passes into tight coverage. However, he wasn’t given much help up front, as he was pressured on nearly half of his dropbacks (18-of-37). He was only sacked twice, but the offensive line allowed a combined 14 hurries, seven of which were allowed by RT Kyle Long (-3.9), as he struggled to pick up OLB Von Miller’s (+3.7) spin move on multiple occasions.
– The Bears’ running game did little to help the passing game, as rookie HB Jeremy Langford (-2.1) had just 25 yards on 13 carries. Ka’Deem Carey (-0.8) did not fare much better, with 32 yards on nine runs. On their combined 22 rushes, the duo failed to force a single missed tackle.
– Veteran CB Tracy Porter (+2.8) currently has a nice little stretch of play. On Sunday, he did not allow a catch on three targets and 33 snaps in coverage, for a +2.5 coverage grade. Over the last three weeks, he has been in coverage 123 times. He has allowed a total of four catches for 39 yards and three pass defenses on 10 targets. His +7.7 coverage grade in that time span is the highest in the league among cornerbacks. Will we continue to see more of this as the season progresses?
LT Charles Leno Jr. (+2.9)
OLB Pernell McPhee (+2.8)
CB Tracy Porter (+2.8)
RG Patrick Omameh (+2.4)
OLB Lamarr Houston (+1.1)