Denver D: Key Rushing Statistics 2nd: Rush Yards Per Game 32nd: Rush Attempts against 15th: Rush Yards Per Carry Comment: Solid Run D but not as good as 2nd in the league stats appear. Yards Per Carry indicates average performance against the run, when you can run against the Broncos all game. Denver had a lead or was tied at halftime in 15 of the 16 games, they had a lead at the half in 11 of the 16 games, and a lead at the start of the 4th qr 14 times out of 16 games. Teams gave up the run as Denver was ahead in most games and Denver had the least amount of rushing attempts against them in the entire NFL. Lots of credit for Denver's rush Defense, goes to the Denver Offense for getting out to quick leads in the vast majority of their games, thus limiting the number of rushing attempts against the Defense. Of the 4 other Defenses in the NFL that are in the top 5 in Rushing Yards Per Game, all 4 are also in the top 5 in Yards Per Carry. Denver is 15th in yards per carry. Denver is the statistical exception here, so I think my theory that "Denver's offense is their best run defense" holds true to an extent. This is certainly not a weakness for the Broncos, it just not the strength that it's made out to be. In the 3 games that Denver lost, they gave up 151, 97, and 168 yards rushing. They can be run on if the score and flow of the game allows for it. Denver D: Key Passing Statistics 29th: Pass Yards Per Game 1st: Passes Attempted Against 3rd: Pass Completion % 4th: Pass Yards per attempt 4th: Opposing QB Rating 17th: Passing TD's allowed 28th: Sacks 6th: INT Comment: In general, the pass defense is better than indicated by stats. Broncos had the most passes attempted against them in the league so that explains the horrible 29th: Pass Yards Per Game ranking. Also, low Pass Completion % indicates quality coverage, although they were likely in a lot of prevent pass coverages, probably lowering this ranking in reality when Denver is in base pass or run coverage. INT ranking is also inflated because they had the most pass attempts against them and therefore the most opportunity for INT's. The Glaring statistic here is that Denver is 28th in the league in sacks. Considering they had the most passes attempted against them in the league, they had the most opportunities for sacks. Also with their 3rd place ranking in Pass Completion %, possibly indicating good coverage, you would figure that their would have been the opportunity for some coverage sacks. This makes them probably the worst team in the league at putting pressure on the QB. This is likely the biggest weakness on the entire team and should be exploited, especially by Tom Brady who when given time can be deadly. I am also theorizing that Denvers high rankings in Opposing QB ranking and Completion percentage, were do to low percentage attempts as the other teams were pressing to try to keep up their scoring with the Broncos. Denver D: Key Overall Statistic 3rd: Points Against Conclusion: Overall the most important statistic of all is Denvers D is 3rd in Points Allowed. Denver has an excellent defense that can play with anybody. I found it very interesting that Denver's D had the most passes attempted against it, but had the least amount of rush attempts against it. This imbalance in attempts against, skews the overall efficiency of the Broncos D. The key here is not to let the Broncos get out to an early lead, where the run has to be abandoned. There lack of sacks indicates inadequate pass rush, which should give the Patriots time to attempt some deep passes to loosen up Denver's run Defense.