Sure, the NFL season doesn’t actually start for two months.
The 2014 Denver Broncos will open training camp on Thursday July 24th. They will begin their preseason schedule against the Seattle Seahawks just two weeks later on August 7th.
Yes, those same Seattle Seahawks that crushed the Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII in February and most likely ruined your Super Bowl party.
Finally on the 7th of September, the Indianapolis Colts will come to Denver and the 2014 season will be off and running.
With all of these dates still down the line what is there for us to worry about right now?
There is plenty of time for us to be concerned with injuries, rivalry games, and our revamped defense later.
Yet, this is the scariest time of the year for both NFL fans and team management.
Once the Organized Team Activities (OTA’s) end, until the start of the regular season, it can be a nerve-racking time for all those involved with the team.
Put simply, when NFL players are left to their own devices, they tend toward chaos.
It seems that every year we see NFL arrests go up during these times of inactivity. And the Denver Broncos are no exception.
Think all the way back to July of 2003 when former Bronco tight end Dwayne Carswell was arrested outside of an Atlanta nightclub. He ended up with a one-game suspension, and caught just six passes all season, as the Broncos went 10-6 then lost in the Wild Card round to the Indianapolis Colts.
Current placekicker Matt Prater was accused in August of 2011 after allegedly driving his car under the influence. Prater escaped any league punishment but Denver finished 8-8, and backed into the playoffs, after winning the below average AFC West.
And we all remember the off-the-field issues that linebacker Von Miller faced last summer stemming from traffic charges. Miller would be suspended from the first six games of the 2013 season and never seemed to fully get back on track. He played just nine games, registering only 34 tackles and five sacks, before succumbing to a knee injury in week 15.
You see, the reason that we as fans should be worried today is that what happens during this time can affect the season in very big ways.
I don’t think anyone can honestly say how Von Miller at 100 percent could have changed the outcome of the Super Bowl versus the Seahawks. He may have had a huge impact on that game.
The Broncos will have a tough schedule this year, the AFC West is improved. Denver faces the Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks, the New England Patriots, the St. Louis Rams, and the Cincinnati Bengals all on the road.
They will match up against some of the top quarterbacks in the NFL in Andrew Luck, Tom Brady, and Russell Wilson. This defense should be improved. It will have to be because it will definitely be tested.
The offense is going to have to be much more efficient. Some of the top defenses from a year ago are on this season’s schedule. Peyton Manning and company cannot turn it over 26 times as they did a year ago.
But before they get to any of those regular season hurdles, they must avoid the dangers and temptations that lurk prior to the season.
A misstep now could completely change the outcome of the season.
Until then we will all just have to be a little more on edge.
Like this? Click here to read a tweet explaining why the Broncos control their own destiny.