KUSA - When Peyton Manning is on the field all he's thinking about is the next play. When he happens to be to be on the sidelines his mind shifts, only slightly, to the next series.
So when he came out of the game last Thursday night after their first drive, not a productive one at that, he didn't want to wait more than a week until the next drive. He appealed to John Fox for the opportunity for another fresh set of downs, although the game plan was only to play a single series against San Francisco, but his bid to return didn't convince the head coach to let that happen.
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"I usually watch the tape and see who was in the right, and who was in the wrong there. But it's very typical, especially this late in camp," Fox said of their plea to return to the game for another series against the 49ers. "It's not a problem."
Manning and the offense was out of sorts, not atypical going against a new defense for the first time. They wanted another chance, more to get in sync with each other than to win the exhibition game. They'll finally get that opportunity, the one they begged for more than a week ago, with the No. 1 offense playing closer to a half in Seattle.
These much needed snaps together, as a unit in game mode, are why these games aren't worthless. They matter if they get something out of them.
"That's what's nice about the preseason-you have four games and this week I'm sure we'll really get to have that rapport with the whole offense and just like I said, get into a rhythm and work out the bumps," wide receiver Eric Decker said.
It's not just for the offense either. While the defensive starters face one of the best offenses led by one of the best quarterbacks in the game, it's nice to see someone different. (Someone not quite as good.)
Although it will be a gradual progression, the coaches have a set idea of how long the starters will play in each game leading up to the Baltimore game on opening night. The starters will get more of a feel of what they're going to see in that Week 1 match-up in just a few weeks.
"You're going to play more snaps and it's more of a test, and just you want to get your legs under you as a defense and get out there. It's not necessarily a situation where you are preparing and game planning so there's not that aspect," said linebacker Shawn Bradley. "It's good to get out there and hit and make calls and deal with noise and play someone that's not in a Broncos jersey."
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