by Dave Ryan
Edged by his opponent on the scoreboard for the second straight week, Denver Broncos cornerback Champ Bailey knows full well that his defense desperately needs to tighten things up going forward in order to win games. The 11-time Pro Bowler made it quite clear to DenverBroncos.com that big plays in the passing game continue to serve as the team's Achilles' heel at the moment.
"We’ve got to start faster," Bailey said. "I felt like the first five minutes, we were good. Then all of a sudden, they throw two balls over our head. We can’t live with that."
Although Bailey and company were able to limit Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson to just two receptions on the afternoon, a key catch by the superstar wideout over the outstretched hand of Bailey ultimately allowed the Texans to kill much of the clock late in the fourth.
"I was right there," Bailey said. "It’s just two good players making plays. Once I started following [Johnson] around, he didn’t have a catch in crunch time. He made it happen. I’ve got to give him a lot of credit for that."
While it's hard to believe that leaders like Bailey and quarterback Peyton Manning won't find a way to turn their respective units around in the coming weeks, Bailey is spot-on in his assessment of how debilitating Denver's slow starts have been this year. Eager to claw their way back to .500 with a win, the Broncos should have an opportunity to turn things around in Week 4 against an Oakland Raiders team still trying to find its identity despite a last-second win over the Steelers on Sunday.