(photo by Gary Green, Orlando Sentinel via the Denver Post)
The Denver Broncos are on some kind of surreal tear through the AFC. To look ahead at Denver's schedule it to become giddy at the opportunities that lie ahead. The Broncos could easily win between six and eight of their next eight games and head into the playoffs with one of the top two seedings.
But things started out slowly.
The Broncos had to go on the road and face stiff competetion early in their season, and, when they sat at 1-2 folks weren't so sure that they were headed anywhere. As recently as st half-time of the Chargers game there were some grave concerns about the Broncos' prospects. Since then, those fears have drifted away. Denver pounded the Chargers in that second half, scoring 35 unanswered points. They followed that win with a dusting of the Saints and then proved their meddle by coming from behind to beat Cincinnati on the road.
It's all good in the hood.
Take notice, Nuggets fans.
The Nugs are 0-3 and a panic, not unlike the one Broncos fans felt a few weeks ago, is casting a blue and yellow shadow across their early season. People are saying the they just aren't good and that it's going to be a really long year. Have the Broncos taught us nothing?
Just as Peyton Manning took some time to "gel" with his new team, Andre Iguodala and Evan Fournier have to determine their roles and adjust to George Karl's schemes. Wilson Chandler is practically new here, too, as little as he has played for the Nuggets. A teams that's made as many moves as the Nuggets have over the past few seasons isn't going to be a complete team this early in the year.
A lot rests on how good JaVale McGee can be. We have no idea. The most expert NBA analysts on the planet can't seem to size him up, so how can we? Also yet to be determined is Ty Lawson's ability to emerge. Lawson's been handed the keys and the new contract. If he rises to the occasion there's no telling how valuable he can be.
In their loss to the Heat on Saturday evening, the Nuggets showed that they were making a great deal of progress. The made mistakes, obviously, but they had a chance to beat the best team in the NBA with a few ticks left on the clock. at the very least, the Nuggets demonstrated that they have the confidence in themselves to face down Goliath.
Being winless after three games is a drag. It was a drag when the Broncos were 1-2. But, if there's one thing our football team has shown us, it is that patience is sometimes rewarded. So keep calm ... and go Nuggets.