When the 7-3 Broncos host the 7-3 Chiefs on Sunday night Football, the stakes will be high. The winner will keep pace with (or catch) the 8-2 Raiders, and the loser will have to worry about being leapfrogged by someone like the Dolphins.
Broncos linebacker Von Miller appreciates the significance of the contest.
“This is a rivalry game flexed to Sunday Night Football,” Miller told reporters on Friday. “It’s the biggest game of the year, and I want to go out there and take advantage of it.”
To take advantage of it, Miller knows he needs to find a way to make more game-changing plays. He was asked whether his quest to do that involves more time spent studying film.
“[I]t’s not on film,” Miller said. “When you watch the film, the opportunities that are there, we take advantage of the opportunities. I don’t know what it is. I’ve just got to do it. It’s not on film. I’ve just got to go out there and do it. It’s not something that you can just look at the film and say, ‘On this play I could’ve [done] that.’ You’ve just got to go out there and create it. You’ve just got to go out there and make it happen.”
Assisting his effort is the fact that the defense is as healthy as it’s been all year. Defensive lineman Derek Wolfe is back, as is cornerback Aqib Talib. Which may make it harder for offenses to devote so much effort to stopping the Denver pass rush.
“Teams are just saying these players are not going to hurt us,” Miller said, referring to the team’s edge rushers. “But we’ve got to go out there and make those plays work. Whether it’s a chip or two guys or whatever it may be, we’ve got to go out there and make those plays work. We’ve done it before. I’ve done it before. Whether it’s a chip or not, we’ve just got to go out there and do it.”
Their chance to do it comes at a time when the Broncos have hardly been dominant. An ugly loss at Oakland followed by an unlikely win in New Orleans has plenty of people wondering whether the Broncos are still the team they were a year ago.