Denver is facing its first bit of adversity in 2016 after pulling out a win over Indianapolis last week. Linebacker DeMarcus Ware is out, big free-agent acquisition Donald Stephenson left his right tackle post early against the Colts and the team may be down to just one tight end this Saturday. Not exactly the news head coach Gary Kubiak wants to hear as quarterback Trevor Siemian makes his first start without the benefit of a home crowd.
However the Bengals are also dealing with their own issues in getting off to a relatively slow start through two weeks. Quarterback Andy Dalton has put up some impressive stats, especially when finding his favorite target A.J. Green down the field, but the offense isn’t quite hitting on all cylinders given its struggles in the red zone and in the run game. The defense still has a wealth of talent and will be counted on to come up big in this AFC clash between potential playoff teams. So far the only question about the Bengals defense hinges around LB Rey Maualuga who has underperformed big time.
So far Von Miller has looked like he’s worth every penny of that mega contract he received this offseason. He’s been terrorizing opposing offenses on just about every snap and made life miserable for two of the league’s best quarterbacks in Cam Newton and Andrew Luck. Seeing how Cincinnati tries to block him on obvious passing downs is worth monitoring because it seems highly doubtful that the Bengals will prefer to have Miller matched up one-on-one with the team’s offensive tackles. Week one against a excellent Jets defensive line the Bengals went to their screen game, and basically won the game that way. I look for the Bengals to try that game plan in this game also.
In the end the biggest question to me is, can the Broncos with Siemen at the helm and on the road for the first time as the starter, generate enough offense? I think the Bengals even against a great Broncos defense will put up more points than the Broncos can. Dalton I believe will play very well and in the end the Bengals squeak out a close win. Bengals 24 Broncos 20.