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NFL Monday Night Football Picks — Broncos-Chargers: Denver needs to solve offensive woes

Monday Night Football

Can the Broncos Solve a Myriad of Issues Against the Chargers on Monday Night Football

By Charles Jay 

NFL Week 6 officially comes to and end with Monday Night Football. The Denver Broncos have been a source of much frustration with the way they’ve conducted their offense. And because he’s one of the highest-paid players in the NFL, a lot of the focus is going to be on quarterback Russell Wilson, for whom the Broncos paid a king’s ransom to acquire in the offseason.

BetAnySports customers might have sat through Denver’s 12-9 boss in their last outing against Indianapolis and wondered whether they were watching high school-level football. Clearly something is wrong, but the question before us is whether they can’t get any of it right in time for their Monday Night Football matchup against the Los Angeles Chargers, which takes place at 8:15 p.m. Eastern time on ESPN.

Denver has been so bad that they’ve had to labor through 22.9 yards for every point they’ve scored, which is easily the worst figure in the NFL. So is their 21.4% touchdown conversion rate in the red zone. Seriously, these were not the kind of things that were expected out of Wilson.

And certainly not out of first-year coach Nathaniel Hackett, inasmuch as our understanding was that he got the job based on being able to present a package that would be more palatable toward Wilson than the one he had to work with in Seattle.

So it’s all kind of strange as we approach this game against the Chargers, who have a quarterback who has been functioning at a high level, despite sore ribs that almost precluded him from playing a couple of weeks ago. Justin Herbert has ten touchdowns and two interceptions and has thrown for almost 300 yards per game.

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Here are the numbers…..

In the Monday Night Football odds that have been posted on this game at BetAnySports, the Chargers are the favorites colon

Los Angeles Chargers -4
Denver Broncos  +4

Over 45.5 Points (-110)
Under 45.5 Points (-110)

And remember that there are plenty of ways to get involved with live betting, as well as tremendous casino action – with eight different outlets – after the final gun goes off.

NFL Monday Night Football Picks — Let’s talk about the Broncos some more

it was a big blow for the team when Javonte Williams was sidelined for the rest of the season. This was a guy who was absolutely notorious for breaking tackles, and now Denver is left with the other half of that combo, Melvin Gordon, whose results have been less than awe-inspiring, as he is gaining just 3.7 yards her attempt. Right now there’s a bit of a crisis in the offensive line, as All-Pro left tackle Garett Bolles is out, requiring Calvin Anderson to fill in for him, and there’s movement at the other positions.

You certainly can’t say that Wilson doesn’t have a talented pair of wide receivers. Courtney Sutton has caught 29 passes for 417 yards, and Jerry Jeudy, the Alabama alumnus, has averaged 8.7 yards after the catch. But this team somehow has not managed to convert on third-and-long situations, which might be more and more required without the presence of Williams in the backfield. They are only 9.8% successful in those situations.

NFL Monday Night Football Picks — Let’s talk some more about the Chargers

This is a team that always seems to have a lot of talent, but they fall short. One of the reasons they have no better than a 3-2 record at the moment is that they are losing the battle at the line of scrimmage. They have been hesitant to run the ball, and when they’ve done so, at least in the first four games, they were unsuccessful. And they have allowed 5.8 yards per carry to the opposition, which is very rarely a formula for victory.

The Chargers reversed that to a considerable degree last week against Cleveland, as Austin Ekeler had 173 yards on the ground. But anyone’s excitement about that has to be tempered by the fact that the Browns are absolutely horrible in containing opposing ground games. Denver is not stellar, but they don’t fit the “horrible” category. And they’ll put pressure on Herbert.

We absolutely can see that Herbert can make things work with whoever he has catching the football, and that includes Mike Williams, who has 392 receiving yards. But Los Angeles will get a lot more dangerous when Keenan Allen is able to return to the lineup. Right now he’s out of action, but he hopes to return after the bye week against Seattle.

NFL Monday Night Football Picks — So what’s the verdict?

Well, we know that Wilson likes to take chances going long, and he’s actually been pretty successful in that regard, logging 21 completions that have gone 20 or more yards beyond the line of scrimmage. But if you follow Charger coach Brandon Staley, you know he’s going to position two safeties deep to recuce that impact.

A couple of years ago, when he was the defensive coordinator for the Rams, Staley faced Wilson three times. And his defenders were able to sack him 16 times, hold him to 55% passing and take those big plays away.

Denver’s inability to get into the red zone have to be considered systemic. Hackett is trying to make some adjustments, including scaling down the playbook, but that’s not what this team acquired Wilson for, is it?

With five offensive touchdowns this season, we can’t rightly expect any kind of explosion on the part of the Broncos, and that, coupled with the fact that they have played 16 of their last 22 games UNDER the total, certainly pushes us in that direction.

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Dirty has been an employee or owner of some of the top online sports gambling forums since 1998. He worked at EOG.com from it's inception until 2008 when he left and opened GamblingIQ and then in 2012 opened Handicappers Hidaway. He has written hundreds af articles over the years and always has his "Dirty Dozen" College Football poll up starting the first week of October.
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