It wasn’t pretty, and it wasn’t nearly enough, but the Denver Broncos’ offense made an appearance in a 29-19 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday night.

When the Broncos found success, it came in the form of the running game that helped them rack up their first three wins of the season.

Aside from an early Jamaal Charles fumble that was returned for the game’s first touchdown on Monday, the running game – along with the defense –  was what kept the Broncos in the ballgame.

Reliability is exactly what the Broncos need, and aside from the costly early fumble, the Broncos found some reliability in their run game, specifically in the form of C.J. Anderson and Devontae Booker.

Anderson finished the game with 78 yards on 15 carries (5.2 yards per attempt) while Booker totaled 40 yards on six carries (6.7 YPA) in addition to scoring the Broncos’ first touchdown since the fourth quarter of their Week 6 loss to the New York Giants.

Charles, despite his early fumble, finished the game with 39 yards on eight carries (4.9 YPA).

In the midst of a poor offensive performance for the third-straight game, the success in the running game is an encouraging sight. Their 177 rushing yards (including 20 from quarterback Trevor Siemian) on Monday was just one yard shy of their highest single-game total of the season.

Denver out-gained Kansas City 177 to 79 on the night. The NFL’s No. 1 rusher, Kareem Hunt, had just 46 rush yards in the game.

Had they been able to take care of the football, the numbers were certainly in their favor to walk out of Kansas City with a big divisional win.

In the three games that the Broncos have won this season, they’ve totaled 178, 143 and 140 yards on the ground.

If the beginning of the season was any indication as to what the identity of the Broncos’ offense was going to be, the run game was going to be the Broncos’ bread and butter. The offense has been in bad shape of late, but the success they found in the run game on Monday night should serve as a glimmer of hope for an offense looking to turn things around in a hurry.

There’s plenty of work to be done in correcting the offensive woes, but for now, the ground game is the Broncos’ best friend.