The Broncos won the season opener for the first time in three years. Now they are on to Jacksonville to play the winless Jaguars. There are some key factors to consider in this game for the Broncos to pull off another win.
An important component in this game is going to be injuries for the Broncos. Wide receiver Jerry Jeudy and cornerback Ronald Darby will be out multiple weeks with their respective injuries, so the depth of this Broncos roster will immediately be tested. Luckily, Denver can turn to their first-round pick from 2021 in Pat Surtain II to fill Draby’s starting spot. At wide receiver, the Broncos have plenty of depth from Tim Patrick to KJ Hamler to help fill the void left by Jeudy’s injury.
The other players that may possibly miss Sunday’s contest are Graham Glassgow (heart) and Bradley Chubb (ankle). Glassgow is still undergoing testing for his irregular heartbeat. If he is unable to play then Netane Muti will take his place at right guard. Bradley Chubb is still recovering from his offseason ankle surgery and the coaches are optimistic he plays against the Jaguars.
One last injury to keep an eye on is Shelby Harris (wrist) who has been limited in practice this week but should play this week.
The Jaguars are coming off a disappointing season opener against the Texans, losing 37-21. The Texans are seen as having one of the worst rosters in the NFL, which makes the loss that much worse. Trevor Lawrence, the Jaguars’ star rookie quarterback, was less than stellar. He was ranked the 29th quarterback by Pro Football Focus in week one and the matchup this week against a defensive coach like Vic Fangio does not bode well for the young QB.
The Jaguars defense also struggled in week one, giving up 160 rush yards. The Broncos should be able to take advantage of the poor run defense with a combination of Melvin Gordon and Javonte Williams. The Broncos averaged 5.9 yards per rush in week one against the Giants.
One of the only bright spots for the Jaguars in week one was their wide receiving core. Marvin Jones, DJ Chark, and Laviska Shenault Jr. combined for 15 receptions and 213 yards against the Texans. The Broncos secondary will certainly have their hands full covering the Jaguars’ talented receivers.
It is still unknown how the Jaguars’ inexperienced coaching staff and young personnel will bounce back in week two, but Denver looked solid on both offense and defense last week. With a strong Broncos defensive performance predicted and a solid outing from the running backs, the Broncos could win this game by double digits.
Prediction: 24 – 13 Broncos