Chiefs 7, Broncos 3: By the Numbers

Willis McGahee

McGAHEE: ... his best day since Week 9 at Oakland wasn't enough.

DENVER – Notable numbers and notes in the wake of the Broncos’ 7-3 defeat to the Kansas City Chiefs at Sports Authority Field at Mile High here on New Year’s Day:

6: Number of teams that entered the playoffs prior to this season with active losing streaks of three or more games since the NFL expanded the schedule to 16 games in 1978. The Broncos and Texans joined that group Sunday afternoon, increasing its size by 33.3 percent.

4-2: Record of those teams in their playoff openers following the losing streak.

4-0: Playoff-opening record of the teams with losing streaks of three or more games when they played their first postseason game at home.

1-6: Denver’s all-time record in wild-card games. Only one of them has been decided by fewer than 18 points (the Broncos’ first wild-card game, a 13-7 road loss to the Houston Oilers on Dec. 23, 1979). The last three defeats — all on the road — have been lost by an average score of 37-12. The Broncos’ lone wild-card win came on Dec. 27, 1997 — a 42-17 romp over the Jacksonville Jaguars that kick-started their run to their first world championship.

2-0: John Fox’s record as a head coach in wild-card games.  Fox has a 5-3 career playoff record; he has as many postseason wins in his 10-season career as the Broncos have overall playoff games played since the 1999 season.

7: Total number of 100-yard games for running back Willis McGahee, which ties Houston’s Arian Foster for the league lead this season. McGahee’s total is tied for fifth-best in team history, matching Otis Armstrong (1974) and Terrell Davis (1996) and trailing Davis (1997, 1998) and Clinton Portis (2002, 2003).

145: McGahee’s rushing yardage total Sunday, his second-highest of the season. Prior to Sunday, the Broncos had won eight of their last nine games when a running back gained more than 140 yards.

2,632: Denver’s rushing yardage total for 2011, the best in franchise annals. The Broncos’ tally beat out their previous record in 2003 by three yards.

Denver became just the 10th team in the last 20 years to rush for more than 2,600 yards, a tally that was much more routine in the 1980′s, when 15 teams hit that figure.

47.4 and 40.2: Punter Britton Colquitt’s gross and net punting averages in 2011. Both were the best in Broncos history.

50: Denver’s passing-yardage total Sunday, its lowest for a single game since Sept. 20, 1992, when the team mustered just 30 passing yards in a 30-0 defeat at Philadelphia.

27.3: Tim Tebow’s completion percentage Sunday, the lowest for any quarterback with at least 20 attempts in a game (per since Carolina’s Jake Delhomme completed only seven of 27 passes for a touchdown and four interceptions at Oakland on Nov. 9, 2008.

Tebow became the first Broncos quarterback with this dubious distinction since Steve Tensi on Oct. 1, 1967 at Houston (per

3-5: Denver’s home record this season, which matches their mark from 2010. These two seasons are the Broncos’ first back-to-back losing seasons at home since 1971-72, when they went 2-4-1 and 3-4 at Mile High Stadium.

5: Years without a winning season, the longest such streak for the Broncos since 1960-72, when they didn’t break .500 once. From 1973-2006, the club’s longest span without a winning season was two years (1994-95).

Tags: , , ,

About Andrew Mason

Andrew Mason has covered the NFL since 1999, when he worked as an editor on when the site was managed by He worked six seasons (2002-07) covering the Broncos on their official website and two (2008-09) on the Panthers' site. He began in 2010 and now contributes to, The Sporting News and The New York Times.
Subscribe to Comments RSS Feed in this post

3 Responses

  1. Kudos for the AFC West title. Congrats to Bronco MVP Willis McGahee, what a FA find. Many positives this year on the defense. Love Colquitt and Prater.
    Question: What happened to Von Miller?


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *