But will it be bad enough for Josh McDaniels to sit Kyle Orton and hand the pigskin to Tim Tebow? One progonosticator says yes -- and lays out an elaborate scenario to explain how it will happen.
The theory comes courtesy of Bleacher Report's Lester Crafton, who sees nearly a mirror opposite of the Broncos' 6-0 start last season. Thanks to a brutal schedule, Crafton predicts just one win (against Seattle in week two) and five losses (versus Jacksonville, Indianapolis, Tennessee, Baltimore and the New York Jets) in the initial half-dozen contests.
From there, Crafton anticipates more Denver misery -- a loss to the Raiders at home, then another to the 49ers in a nationally televised game from London. The result of this slide, he portends, would be tremendous pressure on McDaniels to do something not to lose all fan support. And Tebow would certainly qualify as "something."
At this point, Crafton's piece mutates from grim and dour to sunshiny and upbeat. Thanks to Tebow at the helm, he thinks the Broncos will reel off victory after victory, with only a slip-up to the Houston Texans standing between the squad and a potential wild-card berth. And while the 8-8 finish duplicates the 2009 results, the momentum would be moving in a positive direction.
"It could happen," Crafton writes, and plenty of observers would agree -- with the first part of his prognostication, that is. As for the miraculous, Tebow-led finish, well, that takes a lot more faith.