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2021 NFL Power Rankings: Denver Broncos

Throughout the 2021 NFL season, we will compile a consensus NFL Power Rankings that averages the rankings of all 32 NFL teams.

Here is where the Denver Broncos rank in terms of average, best and worst:

Below you will find a Week 13 roundup for the Broncos in our consensus 2021 NFL Power Rankings.

ESPN -- Rank: 15

The Broncos were 3-3 after Week 6, headed for 3-4 in Week 7. They are now 6-5 after winning three of their past four. Whether this team keeps itself in the playoff mix now depends on whether Denver continues to keep the quarterback under center close to half of the time, uses more play-action and commits to the run game. The win Sunday over the Chargers was just another example.

The Broncos are 6-0 when the quarterbacks are under center 50-50 as compared with the shotgun -- as well as averaging just over 30 rushing attempts. They also have all of their pass completions of at least 40 yards on the season in those games. The team is 0-5 when it lines up in the shotgun most of the time and runs the ball an average of 18 times a game. -- Jeff Legwold

NFL.com -- Rank: 19

When the Broncos traded Von Miller to the Rams, it signaled the start of a new era for the defense. The kids were alright in Sunday's 28-13 win over the Chargers. Denver heavily featured four rookies on defense and harassed Justin Herbert into three sacks, 10 QB hits and two interceptions. Both picks came courtesy of first-year corner Pat Surtain II; one snagged in the end zone with the Chargers looking for the tying score, the other a pick-six that effectively put the game on ice. At 6-5, the Broncos have the chance to move into a first-place tie in the AFC West with a win over the division-leading Chiefs on Sunday Night Football. This Broncos relevance snuck up on you, didn't it?

CBS Sports -- Rank: 14

At 6-5, they are in the playoff hunt. The defense was outstanding against Justin Herbert. That unit could carry them to the playoffs, but they face a tough one against the Chiefs this week.

USA Today -- Rank: 17

Only two teams have allowed fewer points, and only four have turned it over fewer times than Denver. Certainly not a sexy formula, but it's a winning one that has this team in the wild-card mix.

The Athletic -- Rank: 16

Problem area: Offensive line health. The Broncos had just one starting offensive lineman (center Lloyd Cushenberry) on the field in the second half of Sunday's win. Guard Graham Glasgow was already out for the season. Then, on Sunday, Denver lost backup tackle Calvin Anderson, who had been filling in for Garett Bolles, who was out with COVID-19. That left Quinn Bailey, who was called up off the practice squad, blocking Joey Bosa. The Broncos seem to have finally found an offensive identity as a power running team, but they'll need to get and then stay healthy up front, especially with a huge AFC West game against the Chiefs this week.

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