ENGLEWOOD — After Sunday’s 35-33 loss to the Washington Commanders, the Denver Broncos were back at practice on Wednesday as they gear up for their first road game of the season against the Miami Dolphins.

Denver Broncos gearing up for tough matchup against Miami Dolphins

Heading into Sunday’s matchup, the Denver Broncos defense will have their hands full as they prepare to take on one of the NFL’s most explosive offenses this season.

The Miami Dolphins offense ranks first in the NFL in net yards per game (462.5), yards per play (7.3), and third in scoring (30.0 ppg.), which begs the question: how will Denver look to slow down Tua Tagovailoa and company?

After two weeks of play, the Broncos defense is allowing 324.5 yards per game (16th) and 26 points per game, which ranks 23rd. Defensively, Denver has only forced one total takeaway this season and has four sacks.

When opposing offenses are getting into the red zone, Denver’s defense has allowed them to score on 71.4% of their attempts, which knocks their defensive ranking to 24th in the league. While the numbers don’t look great after two weeks, it’s early in the season, and the sample size is smaller.

Where Denver improves or regresses in these categories over the next five to six weeks will be more telling.

Denver’s biggest task on Sunday involves figuring out a way to fluster Tagovailoa. He has consistently gotten the football out of his hands quickly through two weeks, only being sacked once this season.

According to NFL Next Gen Stats, Tagovailoa averaged the 4th quickest time to throw (2.08 seconds) of any QB in a game since 2020. He’s also the only QB with a time to throw under 2.20 seconds to average over 8.0 air yards per attempt in a game over that span.

He’s finding success in the quick passing game, connecting with players like Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle on quick outs, hitches and then taking shots downfield.

Overall, Miami’s offensive operation is efficient, quick, and surgical. Broncos defensive coordinator Vance Joseph will have to devise a game plan that puts players in a position to rebound after a rough showing in Week 2.

Broncos injury report from Wednesday

After Sunday’s loss to the Commanders, Denver’s overall outlook on the injury report is in a strong place heading into Week 3.

During the media viewing portion of practice on Wednesday, the following players were spotted on the side field.

  • Safety Justin Simmons
  • Outside linebacker Frank Clark
  • Outside linebacker Baron Browning
  • Cornerback K’Waun Williams
  • Safety P.J. Locke
  • Offensive tackle Alex Palczewski
  • Tight end Greg Dulcich
  • Defensive lineman Mike Purcell

After practice concluded, Denver announced their official injury report/practice participation report.

Did Not Participate:

Safety Justin Simmons (hip) did not participate during Wednesday’s practice as he and others listed worked on the side field.

Defensive lineman Mike Purcell (ankle) and outside linebacker Frank Clark (hip) were the other two DNPs listed on the official injury report.


Offensive tackle Garett Bolles (ankle) popped up as a limited participant for Wednesday’s practice.

Broncos eager to learn from Week 2 film

Despite an 0-2 start, watching the game tape is a valuable teacher, and players inside Denver’s locker room aren’t panicking.

Broncos inside linebacker Josey Jewell was asked on Wednesday following practice what the defense needs to do to fix some of the issues that have impacted them the first two weeks of the season. Through two games, the Broncos defense has been penalized 12 times and part of that factored into the Commanders 32-9 run on Sunday.

“We need to slow down on the penalties,” Jewell said. “That’s definitely a huge thing — that’s number one for us. We need to create turnovers. We had at least two chances on those picks, so we need to be able to reel those in next time. Then just being able to play fundamental football, stay where you’re supposed to be, don’t try do too much. Everybody do their job and just settle down, and if we do our own jobs, we can beat people, we’re good enough on defense. We just need to be able to settle down and do that every single play.”

After a hot start gave the Broncos offense a 21-3 lead, miscues and momentum set the unit backward in the second half. Broncos offensive tackle Mike McGlinchey highlighted that the film showed a lot of good but that they can’t stall after making the progress they have.

“I think there was a lot of good,” McGlinchey said. “Obviously the first three drives were what they were: scoring touchdown, touchdown, touchdown. We just can’t have that lull that we did in the middle of the game there. Those four or five drives that really stalled us that we weren’t able to produce any points or any first downs to keep our defense off the field. Then we came back a little bit in the fourth quarter and showed a lot of fight to execute long drives and be able to get some points and keep it close with a miracle shot to almost tie the game. There’s a lot of positive to take from it, but the biggest thing is that we have to stop hurting ourselves first, and then we can worry about taking control and winning games.”

Players know how big this week’s matchup against the Dolphins is and are phasing out the outside noise.

The Denver Broncos will be back on the practice field on Thursday as they continue to prepare for their first road test of the season.