Broncos suckage less humiliating than predicted

Earlier this month, the Denver Post's Dan Haley and I made our bets about the Broncos' season record -- and I was one game more pessimistic than he was, predicting they'd end the season at four wins, twelve losses in an inglorious return to the days of Steve Tensi. Three weeks in, it's clear I was wrong -- although not because the Broncos have proven anything definitive by besting one opponent through the beneficence of Jesus Christ and thumping two teams so clueless it's a miracle they didn't get lost going from the locker room to the field. Based on yesterday, the Oakland Raiders, and especially their astonishingly inaccurate QB, JaMarcus Russell, are worse than even the most devoted Al Davis haters believed; the Broncos will have to try mighty hard not to beat them again at home later in the season. Moreover, the Kansas City Chiefs, who were in their game against the Eagles yesterday for less than a nanosecond, may be even worse, giving the Broncos two more likely Ws.

Still, get excited about overachievement at your peril. The Broncos play their first actually tough competitor next week, when they meet the Cowboys. If the defense gets shredded, six wins may be the best they can do without more divine intervention. But if they hang tough, even if they lose, there's reason to believe this year won't be as agonizing as either Haley or I foretold. That's one bet I'd love to lose.

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