If the Denver Broncos made one thing clear on the way to becoming Super Bowl 50 Champions, it was that they fed off of being the underdog.

It doesn’t seem like much has changed early on in 2016.

The Broncos opened the season as three point underdogs to the Carolina Panthers. While the first half looked like the oddsmakers may be correct, the Broncos defense buckled down and Denver wound up winning 21-20 on a Graham Gano missed field goal.

Back in February, the Carolina Panthers were 3.5 point favorites heading into Super Bowl 50. We all know how that one ended.

The Broncos have beaten the big, bad Panthers twice in just as many tries. It seems only fitting that the defending Super Bowl champions enter the season atop the power rankings, a spot that should remain theirs until they lose, right?

Wrong. Across the league, the media, the Broncos continue to receive a lack of respect, despite doing nothing but win big games in big moments.

ESPN even has the Broncos ranked eighth in their weekly power rankings, two spots behind — yep, you guessed it — the Carolina Panthers.

What makes the ranking even frustrating is that the Broncos didn’t move up or down in the rankings. ESPN had the Broncos ranked eighth heading into the season opener, but the fifth ranked Panthers only dropped one spot following their loss to the Broncos.

What else do the Broncos have to do to earn a little respect? They beat the 15-1 Panthers in the Super Bowl, then turned around and did it again to open the season. They have done just about everything right up to this point.

The Broncos are six-point favorites over the visiting Indianapolis Colts heading into Week 2. They have managed to rid the doubt that follows them even if only for a week.

It almost feels wrong to see someone predicting the Broncos to win. It seems like no matter what they do, they can’t seem to lose the underdog stigma that’s followed them around the last calendar year.

Keep it that way.

The Broncos have fully embraced the role of the underdog. They feed off of the idea that no one outside of Denver believes in them.

The Broncos have had trouble with Andrew Luck and the Colts in recent years. While the oddsmakers are on their side this week, there will be plenty of other people that won’t be.

At this point, the Broncos don’t want any respect. This scrappy band of underdogs would rather prove everyone wrong.