It wouldn't be surprising if the Broncos first three opponents also happen to be their last three.
Denver will host Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday Night Football to open the season, then follow with games against Kansas City and at the Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks. Denver cannot afford to not play well to begin the season against these tough opponents.
"We have to start fast. We have three playoff teams the first three weeks with the Colts, Chiefs and the Seahawks. We have to get off to a quick start," Broncos Vice President John Elway said with some urgency.
The Broncos have the second-most difficult schedule in the National Football League – their opponents had a .570 winning percentage last year.
Head coach Fox doesn't necessarily pay attention to the order but he certainly took note when he saw that six of their last nine games would be away from Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The road-heavy end of their season will only heighten their focus early in the season – especially on their Week 1 matchup against the Colts.
"I think that is always exciting to see how you open, where do you open and who you open with. That's what all this offseason stuff is going to be geared toward," Fox asserted.
On five occasions, Denver will play in prime-time including twice in the span of four days. They host the NFC champion runners-up in the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday night and then the division rival San Diego Chargers that Thursday.
Elway asserted that due to the popularity of the Broncos – and thus the format of their schedule – they need to be flexible and also be able to eagerly adapt to different travel accommodations throughout the season.
"It's always going to be a tough schedule with a lot of good football teams on it," the Vice President said. "I think there are a lot of good things about it and we'll do the best we can with it."
They'd much rather beat the Colts, then Chiefs and finally the Seahawks in January and February, but a 3-0 start for the Broncos would suffice for in September.