The League

Zach Leibowitz
Sideline Reporter

Zach Leibowitz

A former sideline reporter for ESPN

A Mile High at 3-0


Norv Turner better put an extra bolt into his San Diego Chargers tonight. Because if they fall three games behind undefeated and front running Denver, they'll need to look a mile high to see what's above them in the standings.

The Denver Broncos have re-emerged as an AFC title contender already. First, they have an absolute stud at QB in Jay Cutler. Second, they have an absolute stud at WR in Brandon Marshall. And the rest of the Broncos stable isn't bad either.

Two-time Super Bowl head coach Mike Shanahan is a proven winner, like him or not. Shanahan has had only two losing seasons in now his 14th year in Denver. The 6-10 campaign in 1999 came with young Brian Griese in his first starting job. Denver finished 11-5 the following season. The other sub .500 season came last year at 7-9, also under a young QB named Cutler. See how the sophomore surge is going?

Defensively, Denver is a bit of a question mark. They've given up an AFC high 84 points. That will need to improve. But as long as they're also leading the NFL in points scored, the defensive struggles will be a little easier to accept.

There's no denying an official's call in Week 2 and a not-so-clutch Martin Gramatica missed FG Sunday are the difference between 3-0 and 1-2 in the AFC West standings.

But you need luck along the way to reach January and beyond.

At a mile high and 3-0, the Broncos are already ahead in the race to the finish line.

By Zach Leibowitz  |  September 22, 2008; 6:30 AM ET Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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