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The Difference Between Denver Broncos 2012 and 2013– Exactly Why Manning Differs from Tebow

November 11th, 2012, it occurred to me.
The difference in between Peyton Manning and Tim Tebow’s years as starting quarterback for the Denver Broncos.
I was all over the Tebow-train—save the haters—but who wasn’t?

However, last year was a fairy tale. The chances of it happening again are virtually impossible. How the Broncos came back every week in miraculous fashion to win… it isn’t sustainable. It couldn’t happen again.

I wasn’t suggesting it would happen again. I was saying was that his win/loss total probably granted another year of being the starter; and if bringing in Peyton Manning was going to happen, it definitely called for Tebow being the backup so he could learn under the tutelage of Manning, one of the best ever. He clearly had things to learn, and clearly, second-on-the-depth-chart at quarterback wasn’t a spot in dire need for the Broncos to have to fill away from Tebow (apologies to Brock Osweiler, but your job shouldn’t be yours. Especially as Tebow is used on only an average of three plays a game with the Jets behind starter Mark Sanchez, under Rex Ryan. I’m not saying he would play more behind Manning, because he wouldn’t, but it clearly wasn’t worth the move to New York from Denver, all for three plays a game, when he could be learning correctly).

Now that I’ve laid some foundation and cleared that up (if anyone was doubting my thought process), I’ll get to why they’re different. On November 11th, on a four-game win-streak, the Broncos were playing Carolina, a sub-.500 team (meaning they lose more than they win), and they won by a margin greater than the total Carolina scored (36-14).
Last year, I look at Tim Tebow’s run, and I look at the opponents they beat in the regular season—Miami, Oakland, Kansas City, San Diego, New York Jets, Minnesota, and Chicago—and think, whoa, that was garbage (all below .500 teams).

So finally getting to my point, Carolina is a team like these. Denver defeated these aforementioned seven teams by a combined 37 points (without the Oakland game, only 23 points. That’s an average of 3.9 points a victory—and two of these wins came in overtime). How much did this year’s team, led by Manning, win this last game at Carolina by? 22 points. Twenty-two.

So, what am I saying? The games that Denver would miraculously come back to win last year, they have a new approach. This year they win this type of game by 22 points.

And there it is… the difference. Last year (with Tebow) we would squeak out wins against about bad teams…. and this year (with Manning), we bury them.

So I showed a picture with aspirations of the Super Bowl, and I used a comparison of bad teams! (Not Denver, but against bad teams.) If you think that’s a faux pas to an otherwise pleasantly argued article, I have more for ya:

This also has better consequences against actual good teams. Last year, Denver played against four playoff teams, and lost three of those games, by a combined 98 points. Ninety-eight! 131-33 (45-10, 41-13, 45-10). This year, we’ve lost three games against playoff teams, and lost by a combined 22 points.

That’s just one possession on average. That means Denver is close enough to win. And those three losses came in the first five weeks of the season, Manning’s first five games in a Broncos uniform. So, they should get a bit of a grace period regardless. And still, thus far, Denver and Manning have beaten two playoff teams.

Last year, Tebow and the Broncos only beat one. They’ve had more opportunities this year, yes, but also we have a legit chance to win every game, yes. I can’t find anyone who thinks we’re going to lose by 35 points in one game this year (35 points was the deficit suffered by Tebow and Denver in one game last year). Looking at the schedule, it looks more likely that the future games that we lose, may be less than 35.

Wrap your head around that. The deficit in losses by Manning’s 2012-2013 Broncos in their final ten games or so, may be less then the deficit suffered in one game by Tebow’s 2011-2012 Broncos.

That’s pretty crazy.


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