DENVER -- When teams play at home, they expect to be able to use that crowd as a competitive advantage.
A loud crowd makes things difficult for offenses that rely on a lot of pre-snap communication. That’s why it’s common to see defensive players gesturing to the fans to make noise.
But you’ll never see an offensive player doing that at home as life is a lot easier for the quarterback and his receivers to communicate if they can hear each other before the snap.
During Saturday’s preseason win vs. St. Louis, the crowd got excited when it was apparent that Manning and the offense would go for it on fourth-and-1 from the St. Louis 6-yard line in the first quarter.
Manning quickly tried to quiet the crowd down so he and the offense could get on the same page for the important snap. It worked, as he and
Talking with Broncos play-by-play broadcaster Dave Logan on AM 850 KOA Tuesday afternoon, Manning reached out to Broncos fans for their assistance.
“When we’re on the field on offense – I love our fans’ excitement – but if we can just find that controlled noise level,” he said with a laugh on the show. “I believe we are going to go for it on some fourth downs this year and maybe not cheering when we’re going for it on fourth down – wait and see and if we get it, cheer then. To me, it’s a hard thing. These fans have so much enthusiasm, but for a receivers' standpoint, you’d love to have that homefield advantage where you wouldn’t have to signal at home.”
The quarterback even offered a suggestion on how to solve the issue on gamedays.
“I don’t know, maybe there’s a leader in each section in the stands, we’ll take some voting polls, have a campaign,” Manning said. “But that’s what you want, a guy to say, fourth-and-1, they’re going for it – I don’t know if that’s possible, I don’t know how to get that message relayed, but any help we can get out there from Broncos fans, we’ll take.”