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Royce Freeman (28) of the Denver Broncos celebrates scoring a touchdown with Phillip Lindsay (30) during the third quarter against the Oakland Raiders. The Denver Broncos hosted the Oakland Raiders at Broncos Stadium at Mile High in Denver, Colorado on Sunday, September 16, 2018. (Photo by Joe Amon/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
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Schlereth: Denver Broncos need to adhere to top-ranked running game

Royce Freeman (28) of the Denver Broncos celebrates scoring a touchdown with Phillip Lindsay (30) during the third quarter against the Oakland Raiders. The Denver Broncos hosted the Oakland Raiders at Broncos Stadium at Mile High in Denver, Colorado on Sunday, September 16, 2018. (Photo by Joe Amon/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

Denver Broncos head coach Vance Joseph said this week that after a three-game skid there would be changes made with the team.

Among those changes, “Schlereth and Evans” co-host Mark Schlereth said on Thursday, should be sticking with the run game more.

“You’re one of the best running teams in football. You’d better adhere to it,” Schlereth said.

The Broncos lead the NFL in yards per attempt (5.6), rank second in total yards (685), and are fourth in rushing touchdowns (6). However, Denver ranks 17th in terms of rushing attempts (123).

But when asked Monday why the team went away from the run in the second half of Sunday’s 34-16 loss against the New York Jets, Broncos head coach Vance Joseph said they don’t “go into the game counting runs.”

“We actually take what they give us,” Joseph said. “If they’re playing single-high defense versus our receivers, that’s the time to throw the football. We can’t run the ball into a loaded box all game, especially when you’re down by that many points. That dictates kind of how the play calls are handled.”

Schlereth, however, questioned why not continue to run the ball if its effective no matter the defensive schemes opponents show.

“Why is it OK to throw four straight incompletions and keep throwing incompletions? Why is that OK but it’s not OK to run the ball two straight times? I don’t understand that,” Schlereth said. “Why can’t you run in a loaded box? Why? I understand that the numbers aren’t always perfect, but, to me, it has value.”

According to Schlereth, the Broncos need to find a way to flip the ratio of runs to passes, run the ball effectively and with frequency, and avoid a shootout with the high-powered Los Angeles Rams on Sunday.

“If you get into a shootout with the Rams, you will lose by 21. I promise you that,” Schlereth said. “Go ahead and throw it 50 times. You’ll lose by 20-plus points against this football team.”

Follow digital content producer Johnny Hart on Twitter: @JohnnyHart7.