Not quite yet. Although the game was an incredible feat and the Denver Broncos got a little revenge on the Super Bowl champions, there were a lot of “rookie” mistakes that still need to be resolved before the Broncos can be considered a Super Bowl caliber team.
One that obviously comes to mind is Danny Trevanthan prematurely dropping the ball before entering the endzone. He got what looked like an intense talking to by defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio after that play, which was warranted.
They also need to have a stronger running game in order to be that champion team. 2.8 yards per rush is not going to give Peyton Manning the holes that he needs and passing all game will make the offense very predictable. It was good to see rookie Montee Ball getting a few successful plays and hopefully his skills will continue to increase as he gains experience.
Aside from those mistakes, Manning still tied an NFL record with seven touchdown passes in a single game, which is unheard of in this era of football. The last time this happened was in 1969.
The Broncos still don’t have their full starting defensive roster with Champ Bailey’s injury and Von Miller being suspended. However, the Broncos were still able to get two interceptions off the Ravens and linebacker Shaun Phillips had 2.5 sacks. Duke Ihenacho was the leading tackler with 12. The Broncos have players that step up when they are needed and fill in for the regulars quite admirably.
Wes Welker and Julius Thomas scoring two touchdowns each proved how invaluable they are to the team. They are a combination that Manning didn’t have last season (being that they are using the third-year J. Thomas in another way).
With what was accomplished Thursday, aside from a few mistakes, it is hard to deny that the Denver Broncos have a realistic shot at winning the Super Bowl this year.