Although the blame for the Broncos’ ineligible offense on Sunday could be transferred to all participants, the new line of two fill-in guards allowed a season-high five sacks in Sunday’s 23-7 loss to the Baltimore Ravens.
Right guard Graham Glasgow (knee) was ruled out on Friday and left guard Dalton Risner (ankle) was scratched 90 minutes before kickoff. Neten Muti made his fourth NFL debut in place of Glasgow, and rookie Quinn Meinerz made his first in place of Risner.
The Ravens did a total of six other quarterback knockdowns in addition to the sacks. Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater was ruled out of the game with an injury late in the first half on a hit from outside linebacker Odafe Owe.
The Broncos have allowed 12 sacks in four games.
“There’s a lot of people involved,” said coach Vic Fangio. “Obviously, the O-line, the (running) back, the tight ends when they are asked to pass the protege and the quarterback. It’s a multi-faceted operation and I’m sure we’ve had breakdowns across the board.”
Bridgewater was dismissed in 2.59 and 4.19 seconds.
Meinerz was called for a false start penalty. His first NFL action came against the New York Jets when Reisner was injured and practiced with the first team last Wednesday and Thursday.
Left tackle Garrett Bowles said, “I told him before the game to just be a kid from Whitewater, Wis., and don’t be any different.” “I felt like he didn’t rattle when he got there—he was really cool and collected and he made big time for us.”
Boles, who was called for a holding penalty, blamed himself for the offensive line clashes.
“Really angry with myself,” he said. “I am my own biggest critic and I know that I have to correct my mistakes and get back on my track where I am. I have good days and some days that will be bad and today, I have a face ( figurative) punched, so I need to figure out what happened when I got knocked out and just got up again.”
Injuries happen. In addition to Bridgewater, the Broncos finished the game without returner/receiver Dionte Spencer (chest) and cornerback Pat Suren II (ribs).
Spencer was injured on an incomplete pass when he was hit by Ravens safety Chuck Clark. CBS executives expert Gene Sturtore said on the telecast that Clark should have been punished for unnecessary roughness.
“(The officer) said he thought (Clarke) hit him with his shoulder, not the crown of his helmet,” Fangio said.
Sartain went on the Ravens’ second-to-last drive. Bryce Callahan went outside off the nickel and Nate Hairston became the third corner.
Outside linebacker Von Miller went on briefly in the fourth quarter in what he said was a cramp. He returned to the game.
Foot Note. Outside linebacker Aaron Patrick, inside linebacker Curtis Robinson and receiver David Moore all made Broncos starts. … the rookie inside linebacker Baron Browning (back) was inactive for the first time this year; He was added to the injury report on Friday. … Broncos punter Sam Martin made a career-high 10 tries.