CENTENNIAL, Colo. (CBS4) - The Broncos defense has tallied some impressive stats in their first two games of the season. They are second in the NFL in yards allowed per game (243.5) and in the top 10 in points allowed per game (18.5). They are also first in pass yards allowed (only 135!), and they have caused seven turnovers.
It's safe to say the defense has been the spark that has spurred the team to a 2-0 record.
"Definitely," said linebacker Brandon Marshall on Xfinity Monday Live. "As a defensive player that's how you want it. You want to win games for the whole team. ... We want to be No. 1 in everything."
Marshall played a key role in the last-minute go-ahead score that won the game for the Broncos against the Chiefs last Thursday. His forced fumble against running back Jamaal Charles led to a recovery return for a defensive score by teammate Bradley Roby.
"I was thinking they might pass the ball and try to play for a field goal or something like that, but ... I saw them running the ball," he said. "As (Charles) was going down I was able to swoop in and stick my finger in there. And I actually dislocated my finger on that play. But it was well worth it."
Marshall said practicing trying to knock the ball out often pays off during games, but "at that time, I was really just trying to make a tackle; I guess my hand was just in the perfect position."
Marshall said the play was probably his proudest moment in his pro career so far. He was presented with the game ball in the locker room. And regarding that finger injury, he says he'll be fine.
One of the strengths the Broncos defense has demonstrated so far is getting hits on the quarterback.
"We have a lot of great talent in the defense. A lot of great rushers, a lot of great speed, and that allows us to get to the quarterback," Marshall said.
Marshall credits that to defensive coordinator Wade Phillips' scheme.
"He wants us to play loose, he wants us to play fast, and that's what we're doing," Marshall said.
Marshall said he and his defensive teammates are filled with confidence right now.
"I think everybody's just hungry. We want to be great. We want to be the best defense in the NFL," he said.
In order for that to happen, Marshall says they will need to focus on "more turnovers, more ball hawking, less points" and place a stronger emphasis on limiting opponents' rushers.
The Broncos next opponent is the Lions, and Marshall says when they face them Sunday night in Detroit they know they'll be up against an 0-2 team that is desperate for a win.
"We can't take them lightly. Just because they're 0-2 means nothing. Absolutely nothing. We're going into their house, a hostile environment. So we've got to just be ready to play."
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