If the Denver Broncos are going to win against the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday in an AFC West Divisional showdown, they’ll have to get right on offense, pressure Derek Carr, and limit explosive plays by the Raiders offense. This is “The Game Plan.”

Denver Broncos must “get right” on offense

The Broncos offense has been a roller coaster of highs and lows through the first three weeks of the NFL regular season.

In Weeks 1 and 2, Denver’s offense had no issue moving the ball against the Seattle Seahawks and Houston Texans. Week 3 against the San Francisco 49ers was a different story.

Granted, the 49ers came into Sunday’s game against the Broncos with the top-ranked defense in the National Football League, but still the efficiency was not there for Denver offensively.

The Broncos first nine drives of the game resulted in three and outs.

Punter Corliss Waitman helped keep the Broncos in the game by pinning the 49ers offense deep into their own field territory, allowing Denver’s defense to thrive.

Against the Raiders, Russell Wilson and the Broncos offense must get right and take advantage of a defense that has allowed multiple big plays this season.

One way Wilson and Co. can soften up the Raiders defense is by establishing a balance with the run game, led by Javonte Williams and Melvin Gordon.

Last week, the 49ers aggressive front contained the edge and stunted aggressively on inside gaps, limiting the run production from both Williams and Gordon.

The Raiders could take a similar approach with players like Maxx Crosby and Chandler Jones, but if the Broncos can generate several chunk runs early on, it will give the rest of the offense the keys to open things up in the passing game with Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy, KJ Hamler, and Albert Okwuegbunam.

Broncos defense must pressure Derek Carr

Derek Carr has been a thorn in the side of the Broncos defense for the last several years, largely attributed to him utilizing a quick passing emphasis to negate the Broncos pass rush.

An argument can be made that former head coach Vic Fangio was fired because he couldn’t beat the Raiders or get pressure on Carr.

In their first matchup last season, Carr went 18-of-27 passing for 347 yards and two touchdowns in the Raiders 34-24 win in Denver.

At home in Las Vegas, Carr and Josh Jacobs converted 6-of-12 on third down to help take down the Broncos 17-13.

Carr has been methodical against Denver throwing both in the short to intermediate games with accuracy and taking a deep shot on occasion.

The addition of Davante Adams alongside Hunter Renfrow, Darren Waller, and the emergence of Mack Hollins provides him with arguably the best set of weapons he’s had in his career at the skill player position. Although, Renfrow is out today.

Randy Gregory and Bradley Chubb will look to take advantage of the Raiders’ offensive line who is dealing with bumps and bruises specifically at offensive tackle with Kolton Miller dealing with an ankle injury.

Chubb has three sacks on the season with Gregory trailing with two.

Through three games, Carr has been sacked a total of eight times and if the Broncos want to limit his opportunities to throw across the middle, they’ll have to get to him early and often.

Can the Broncos limit explosive plays?

After having an impressive 10-catch, 141-yard performance in Week 1, Raiders wide receiver Davante Adams hasn’t had an opportunity for many explosive plays the last two weeks.

Broncos cornerback Patrick Surtain is projected to play a good portion of snaps against Adams on Sunday which is a great option to use when trying to limit one of the NFL’s best receivers.

In Week 3, Surtain was targeted six times in coverage and didn’t allow a single reception in Sunday’s win.

As mentioned earlier, the Denver defense won’t have to key on is agile receiver Hunter Renfrow, who was ruled out by the Raiders on Friday due to a concussion.

How the Broncos cover Adams, Waller, and Hollins will challenge every blade of grass on Sunday, but Denver’s defense has proven early on that they can slow down some of the league’s most explosive players.

Denver (2-1) faces Las Vegas (0-3) with a 2:25 pm MT kickoff.