Defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio's troops bounced back emphatically in Sunday's 45-21 victory over the Redskins, hitting Robert Griffin III more than 15 times and ultimately knocking him out of the game in the fourth quarter.
After an underwhelming season debut in Week 7, All-Pro pass rusher Von Miller was a difference-maker while spying Griffin for most of the afternoon. Miller turned in a strip-sack and another tackle for loss while the Broncos held RGIII to the lowest passer rating and yards per attempt figures of his career.
Now that Miller is channeling his 2012 form, Denver is once again taking on the look of the AFC's superpower.
1. Peyton Manning hasn't been clicking on all cylinders the past two weeks like he was early in the season, but his offense still has more points through eight games than any team in NFL history after closing out Sunday's game on a 38-0 run.
2. Broncos tight end Julius Thomas was forced from the game with an ankle injury. Presumably because he was battling a toe injury of his own, Eric Decker lost snaps to Andre Caldwell. Aside from the injuries, Broncos receivers struggled with physical press-man coverage for the second consecutive week. They finally succeeded through a series of picks and screens in the second half.
3. Denver has been the most effective screen-pass team in the league, highlighting the importance of Manning's acumen in checking to the play at the line of scrimmage. The Broncos blew the game wide open behind twin 35-yard screen touchdowns to Knowshon Moreno and Demaryius Thomas in the fourth quarter.
4. Wes Welker already has tied his single-season career high with nine touchdowns. The receiver leads the NFL in touchdown receptions through eight weeks.
5. Griffin told Fox Sports' Pam Oliver before the game that he's faster than ever as a runner. If that's true, it's not showing up on game film. RGIII will eventually return to 2012 form, but he wasn't there last week and won't be there next week. He sailed too many passes, held the ball too long and failed to recognize open receivers Sunday. Dr. James Andrews told NFL Media's Omar Ruiz after the game that Griffin's left knee is "OK." The quarterback was held out of the final two drives only because the game was out of reach.
6. The Redskins jumped out to a 21-7 lead early in the third quarter with little contribution from Griffin and the offense. They scored three touchdowns over a five-minute stretch, via a key Broncos penalty, a Manning fumble and a Manning pick-six. The offense didn't reach 200 yards until deep in the fourth quarter.