Michael Phelps won his 22nd gold medal last night, but Broncos fans couldn’t look away from their team to watch. Typically, NFL preseason is somewhat of a joke, but Denver’s football team did not come out like it was the first game of the preseason.

All 11 players on the field at any given moment played with a competitiveness usually reserved for the regular season. Of course, a majority of those guys are fighting for a roster spot and it showed in Denver’s 22-0 domination of the Chicago Bears.

Those 22 points were split between offense, defense and special teams. Scoring in all three phases of the game in their first showing of the season bodes well for what is to come this fall.

“Nice thing is if you score in three phases of football, that’s a good thing,” Kubiak said. “Always preaching being able to win three ways as a team and build a score three ways as a team is very impressive.”

The Broncos defense racked up seven sacks — neither Von Miller nor DeMarcus Ware even suited up for the game — and only two starters from last season had sacks: Derek Wolfe split a sack with Shane Ray in Chicago’s first possession, and TJ Ward had a monster hit on Jay Cutler later in the first quarter.

The other six sacks were split between first-year Broncos Jared Crick and Dekoda Watson and rookies Will Parks and Vontarrius Dora (2).

Despite the absence of Miller, Ware, Aqib Talib and Chris Harris, the Orange Crush defense was clearly in fine form. There are plenty of doubters who believe Denver’s defense is incapable of having as dominant of a season as they saw last year, especially with Malik Jackson gone to Florida and tackling-machine Danny Trevathan playing in Chicago.

As a unit, the defense just uses that as motivation.

“We wanted to come in and show ourselves that we haven’t lost a beat. We’re the same team from last year,” Ward said. “It’s definitely the same attitude. It may be a little bit better as far as wanting to dominate the opponent. We’re clicking. It felt good to get that win today.”

Special teams coach Joe DeCamillis has plenty to be proud of, as well. Bennie Fowler blocked a punt late in the second quarter and the ball was recovered for a touchdown by Zaire Anderson.

Blocking a punt or a field goal means that player is putting in extra, and when your team is already up 13-nil in a preseason game, well, Fowler made a very good impression.

“You know what is interesting? Guys that are having good camps come out and play good in preseason. Cody has had a great camp, Bennie has had a great camp,” Kubiak said. “Those things tend to carry over. Our receiver competition is very strong, and we need to continue to look at those young guys. I just see carry over is all I see.”

Denver takes on San Francisco next Sunday in their second preseason showing. Look for those new guys and rookies to continue making a case for themselves. Denver’s depth is enviable, and that means every player will be pushed at their position for the starting role. Competition breeds success and the Broncos showed their competitiveness isn’t going anywhere.