MNF Review: Finding big receivers
September, 24, 2013
By Steve Muench | ESPN Insider
AP Photo/Joe MahoneyThe Broncos' Eric Decker and Demaryius Thomas use their height to their advantage.As good as the Peyton Manning to Wes Welker connection has been, the Broncos wouldn’t be off to such a hot start if it wasn’t for the contributions of 6-foot-3, 229-pound Demaryius Thomas and 6-foot-3, 215-pound Eric Decker. Manning and offensive coordinator Adam Gase are maximizing the advantages that come with the size of these receivers.
Thomas is so strong after the catch that the Broncos put an emphasis on getting the ball in his hands and letting him make something happen. Manning can supplement the ground game by throwing quick-hitting screens to Thomas when he sees one safety high and eight men in the box.
Monday against the Raiders, the Broncos hit Thomas on a designed screen over the middle against a three-high safety look on a third long. While he didn’t pick up the first down, Thomas had plenty of room to work against this soft coverage. Denver also threw a screen to Welker out of a bunch formation with Thomas and Decker leading the way for him.