2018 BRONCOS SEASON PREVIEW & NFL FUTURES LINES
Looking for 2018 Denver Broncos predictions? We’ve got your back. It wasn’t long ago the Denver Broncos were right there with the Patriots in the AFC year in and year out but a quarterback hasn’t stuck since Peyton Manning left two years ago. Case Keenum is supposed to be that guy this year for a team that will put plenty of talent around him.
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2018 Denver Broncos Super Bowl Odds +3200
Broncos 2018 AFC Championship Odds +1300
Broncos 2018 AFC West Odds +525
Broncos Season Win Totals Lines – 7.5 (Over +115 / Under -135)
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2018 Denver Broncos Predictions: Roster Changes
The Broncos were in on Kirk Cousins until the Minnesota Vikings offered him a fully-guaranteed contact. So John Elway made a shrewd move and instead went after a more affordable option who became available only after the Vikings landed Cousins: Case Keenum.
Keenum proved to be a winner last season in Minnesota and comes in more affordable, more mobile and perhaps with a chip on his shoulder after his former team let him walk after taking them to the NFC Championship game.
Denver then signed an offensive tackle to sure up the line that was so terrible last season. Jared Veldheer will pair with Garett Boiles, who was up and down in his rookie season but still has plenty of promise a full year after going in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft.
Denver retained Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas after disappointing season from each in 2017. But Elway also drafted two wide receivers and took running back Royce Freeman out of the University of Oregon in the third round.
2018 Denver Broncos Predictions: Offense
Freeman actually becomes an x-factor right away because the running game has always been vital to Denver’s success and because Case Keenum depends on a strong ground game to keep the defense honest and set up play-action.
Denver let CJ Anderson walk in the offseason and has put a lot of stock in both Freeman and Devontae Booker. Other than those two, the depth chart is thin, though teams have picked up and plugged in running backs out of nowhere in the middle of the year.
The offensive line should be improved but the wide receivers aren’t so surely primed for a bounce-back. Sanders is old and he couldn’t stay healthy last season. Thomas’ production completely dropped off and it wasn’t all because of the quarterback play. He dropped everything thrown his way. Denver is hoping the rookies will come in and light a fire under the incumbents’ asses.
If that happens, Keenum has a receiver corps similar to what he had in Minnesota last season. But if those two struggle again, he won’t be able to rely on the rookies.
2018 Denver Broncos Predictions: Defense
Denver drafted Bradley Chubb after he fell all the way down to the fifth pick to provide another stalwart pass-rusher next to Von Miller, which it has been missing ever since DeMarcus Ware left after the Super Bowl year.
Chubb and Miller should wreak havoc on opposing quarterbacks and make it extremely difficult to get any passing going against Denver with the No Fly Zone intact, even after the front office let Aqib Talib go in a trade with the LA Rams.
The defense is certainly the strength but, like the offense, the running game could be where it struggles. The Broncos’ front line isn’t strong but they should be able to commit more in the form of linebackers to stopping the run if the pass rush and secondary are as good as advertised.
2018 Denver Broncos Handicapping: (Strengths/Weaknesses)
The defense has the be the strength of this team, in addition to an always strong home-field advantage. Case Keenum sures up the quarterback position but it won’t mean much if the line doesn’t improve and the skill positions don’t either emerge or develop.
The running game is the key, to me. But almost equally as important are the receivers Sanders and Thomas. What can we realistically expect from them? It’d be nice if one bounces back but it sure feels like a long shot that they both do.
2018 Denver Broncos Prediction (Final Record): 9-7
It feels like every team in the division could go a game to either side of 8–8. I give the nod to the Broncos because of that defense and what it should be able to do against the other offenses in the division. Keenum doesn’t need a ton but he certainly needs something out of those skill positions.
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