The Denver Broncos (6-6) head to the West Coast looking to extend their three-game winning streak against the San Francisco 49ers (2-10) on Sunday.
In order to come away with that victory, “Schlereth and Evans” co-host Mark Schlereth laid out his keys to a Broncos win Friday morning:
Shut down 49ers TE George Kittle
Among the Broncos weaknesses on the defensive side of the football the past few years, Schlereth said, is covering the tight end.
On Sunday, Denver will need to step up its game in order to stop 49ers tight end George Kittle, whom Schlereth said is the “key to their offense.”
“They will run the ball, they will have their attempts, but you’ve got to be able to cover No. 85, the tight end, George Kittle,” Schlereth said. “If you don’t do that, you’re going to be in trouble because he is the most dynamic offensive player they have.”
Through 12 games this season, Kittle has 62 receptions on 93 targets for three touchdowns and 893 yards (14.4 yards per reception).
Involve Phillip Lindsay more in the Broncos offense
Undoubtedly, Phillip Lindsay has been one of the top performers for the Broncos in 2018, if not the top performer, earning AFC Offensive Player of the Week honors for his 157-yard, two-touchdown effort against the Cincinnati Bengals last Sunday.
But earlier this week, “Schlereth and Evans” co-host Mike Evans called on Denver to utilize Lindsay even more.
And on Friday, Schlereth said, with Emmanuel Sanders out for the year, he agrees.
“They have got to get him involved not only in the running game, because he has just been absolutely fabulous. Over seven yards per carry in his last three games. Not only that, eight yards per carry in the last game, getting 157 yards. But they have got to get him the ball out of the backfield,” Schlereth said.
So far, through 12 games, Lindsay has 179 touches, with the majority coming as rushes and only 25 through the air.
“I think the deal right now is getting him more involved, getting him more touches, especially in the passing game because he’s that dynamic,” Schlereth said.
Schlereth said that, ideally, he’d like to see the Broncos get Lindsay “at least five or six catch this game” and possibly a touchdown through the air.
Follow digital content producer Johnny Hart on Twitter: @JohnnyHart7.