How Do the Denver Broncos Fit in to the Playoff Picture After Week 12?

Jennifer Eakins@@themondaymommy Contributor INovember 26, 2012

KANSAS CITY, MO - NOVEMBER 25:  Running back Knowshon Moreno #27 of the Denver Broncos is pushed down by cornerback Javier Arenas #21 of the Kansas City Chiefs during the game at Arrowhead Stadium on November 25, 2012 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

It certainly was not a pretty win for Denver on Sunday afternoon in Kansas City, but Broncos fans will gladly take it.

Despite the overall lackluster effort on both sides of the ball, the victory over the Chiefs leaves Denver with an 8-3 record; a comfortable four games ahead of San Diego in the AFC West. With no apparent competition for the division title and five weeks remaining, Denver seems to have a clear path to a playoff berth this season.

Still to be determined for Denver is if they have a shot at one of the coveted bye week spots to start the playoffs. Or, can they procure a home-field advantage through the postseason? The Broncos are currently sitting as the fourth seed in the AFC behind the Texans (10-1), Ravens (9-2) and Patriots (8-3).  

Denver is going to have to play more complete football if it intends to move up out of that fourth spot and have a better advantage in the playoffs. After seeing the product that was put on the field at Arrowhead on Sunday, the Broncos are going to need to up the intensity and not play down to their opponents if they plan on making a serious run deep in to the playoffs.

This is essential for the Broncos moving forward, as they have a relatively winnable schedule down the stretch. If not prepared, Denver can get knocked down by an inferior team, making the season drastically shorter than the team's talent would suggest.

Three out of the five remaining Bronco opponents have a current record below .500 heading into Week 13. Denver needs to fix the sloppy mistakes such as drops and missed tackles if it plans on getting a chance at that Lombardi Trophy.

It is the NFL after all, and as we all know, absolutely anything can happen when two teams take the field. With five games remaining, we can only speculate on how the path to the postseason will eventually look for the Denver Broncos.

Only one thing is for certain, the road down the stretch for this Denver team will be an interesting one, and Broncos fans are ready and fired up to ride it with them.