After the game, the Around The NFL gang wasn't alone in calling for coach Gary Kubiak to scrap his scheme in favor of Manning's beloved playbook, but Kubiak isn't biting.
"You stay committed to what you believe in," Kubiak said this week, per ESPN.com's Jeff Legwold. "We're going to get where we want to go offensively if we stay committed to something. We believe in what we're doing, been doing it a long time, we just got to get better at how we're doing it. As coaches that always starts with us. You don't run away from something, you keep working at it."
It hasn't worked to date, with Denver ranking 29th against the run and dead last in yards per play, while giving up more sacks than all but three squads league-wide.
Even more concerning, the Broncos have lost their big-play ability, logging just two gains of 20-plus yards -- lowest in the league -- after finishing second in the NFL with 80 such plays a season ago.
"I think there's always going to be an adjustment, every season is going to bring an adjustment," Manning said. "I think no matter what's occurred in the offseason you're going to have new players in new positions and you're always going to be trying new things, it's certainly going to be an adjustment, I think that's fair. ... As long as we continue to work and improve, that's what we said all along, that's what we said we were going to do and that's what we will do."
The next move feels obvious to fans and writers and anyone watching the final portion of Manning's performance against Kansas City. Stop trying to shove a 39-year-old quarterback into an offense that doesn't fit. Set him free. Unleash him back into the comfortable scheme that set records two seasons ago and gives Denver and Peyton the best shot to chase down the Lombardi.
Kubiak's offense is time-tested and effective -- but not right now, not with this team. And not with this quarterback.