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Who has the edge? – The Denver Post

Three things to watch …

Who is fresh? With only four days in between games, the Thursday night matchup often comes down to which team recovers quicker from their three-hour battle the previous Sunday. Denver had a relatively quick and clean game in their 23-0 victory over the Jets. The Colts, meanwhile, played into overtime in a driving snowstorm in their 13-7 loss at Buffalo. Indianapolis coach Chuck Pagano, a Boulder native, said navigating through 6 inches of powdery snow was akin to playing in “quicksand.”

Can Denver snap its road skid? It has been more than a calendar year since the Broncos won a road game (Dec. 4, 2016, at Jacksonville). They’ve lost eight consecutive games in that span. To avoid becoming the franchise’s first team since 1964 to lose every road game, the Broncos must beat the Colts on Thursday or the Redskins on Dec. 24. Denver has not won in Indianapolis since 2003. The Colts are 2-4 at home this season with their victories coming against the Browns and the 49ers.

Pressuring Brissett. Jacoby Brissett, the Colts’ first-year starter at quarterback, has been sacked a league-high 48 times. The pressure has led to 12 turnovers (seven interceptions, five fumbles lost). The Broncos gathered early momentum against the Jets with linebacker Brandon Marshall’s strip sack of QB Josh McCown. Denver scored on the ensuing possession to take a 10-0 lead and the defense dominated from there. Can the Broncos replicate the formula?

Game Plan

When the Broncos run. Denver wasn’t overly efficient with its ground attack Sunday (84 yards on 35 carries). But by staying true to the run, the Broncos were able to produce the same arithmetic that has existed in all four of their wins: rushing more times than they pass. Still, the Broncos have certainly missed right guard Ron Leary, who was placed on injured reserve Tuesday. The Colts rank 23rd against the run. Edge: Colts.

When the Broncos pass. When creating a game plan for the Broncos, Pagano said keeping Demaryius Thomas “from wrecking the game,” is the top priority. Thomas has four touchdown catches in his last six games and needs 229 receiving yards in the final three games for his sixth consecutive 1,000-yard season. The Colts are giving up 257.8 passing yards per game, the third-highest mark in the NFL. Edge: Broncos.

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