New England Patriots v Denver Broncos Denver lost 26-23 to New England on Sunday Night Football, spoiling its chance to improve on its 7-8 record. The Broncos trailed 23-7 at the half, but Russell Wilson rallied the team with two late touchdowns, including a 2-point conversion pass to wide receiver Brandon Johnson.

The Denver offense had a chance to finish off the comeback when it had the ball at its own 39 late in the fourth quarter, but the offense went three and out, giving New England the ball back with less than a minute remaining in the game.

New England Patriots v Denver Broncos The Patriots drove seven plays and 44 yards to score a 56-yard Chad Ryland career-long field goal with two seconds remaining. The missed PAT left New England with a 9-7 lead.

Zappe fumbled the ball at the 5 and Cody Davis recovered it at the 1-yard line and rolled it in for a 16-7 lead. The defense has been the backbone of Denver’s offense all season, carrying the team from 1-5 to playoff contention.

But Payton’s offense has not been up to the task, and it was never more evident than in the opening sequence. On the game’s first snap, Denver’s defense was stymied by a strip-sack from New England’s D. J. Jones. Courtland Sutton, the team’s leading receiver,

New England Patriots v Denver Broncos went out with a concussion and Denver’s offense was limited to Williams’ 3-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. The offense has now lost five of its last six games, leaving Denver with a slim chance of making the playoffs for the fourth time in six seasons.

New England Patriots v Denver Broncos

(December 24, 2023) – Quarterback Russell Wilson of the Denver Broncos (3) throws a pass during the second quarter of the Denver Broncos vs. the New England Patriots (4) game at Empower Field at Mile High in Denver, CO.

Denver Broncos

Denver Broncos Tight End Lucas Krull (85) runs the ball as New England Patriots Linebacker Ja’Whaun Bentley (8) attempts to tackle him in the second quarter of play at Denver’s Empower Field at Mile High, Denver, CO, on December 24th, 2023.

New England Patriots v Denver Broncos

Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott (15) carries the ball against the New England Patriots during the first quarter of their game at Empower Field at Mile High in Denver, Colorado, on December 24, 2022.

New England Patriots v Denver Broncos

New England Patriots v Denver Broncos

DENVER, CO (December 24, 2023) – New England Patriots running back Kevin Harris (36) carries the ball as Denver Broncos linebacker Alex Singleton (49) tries to tackle him during the first half of play at Empower Field at Mile High.

New England Patriots v Denver Broncos