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Broncos, Briefly: Friday, Sept. 9, 2016

Broncos defense comes up clutch to earn hard fought victory over Panthers (Cameron Wolfe, Denver Post)
When the bravado wore away, the Broncos' defense was left looking around for answers in an early fight. Just as they did time and time again last season, they punched back and finally delivered the knockout blow.

We already knew about the defense, but Denver's offense wasn't supposed to be this good (Danny Kelly, The Ringer)
If the win over the Panthers is any indication, we'll be seeing some iteration of the '90s Broncos teams Kubiak coordinated — the ones that ran all over the NFL with Terrell Davis at running back and John Elway at quarterback.

Gano misses wide left, Broncos survive Panthers' final flurry: 10 takeaways (Sean Wagner-McGough,*
In the first game of the 2016 NFL season, the defending Super Bowl champion Broncos knocked off the Panthers, 21-20, despite three costly turnovers that nearly sunk them. *

Broncos give Elway reason to smile in opener (Woody Paige, Colorado Springs Gazette)
And moments after the triumphant return to football, the Broncos' master of all he sees, John Elway, emerged from his box and flashed a grin that could light up the night in Denver.

Siemian clutch with 2 TD drives in 4th (Jeff Legwold, ESPN)
But Siemian was composed in big moments, putting together two touchdown drives in the second half as the Broncos became the first Super Bowl winner to trail by at least eight points in the next season's opener before coming back for the win.

Broncos execute masterful TD drive (
The Broncos drive down the field to cut the Panthers' lead to three.

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Kubiak victory speech (*
Head Coach Gary Kubiak addresses the team following the Broncos 21-20 victory over the Panthers, in the regular season opener. *

Highlights: Broncos vs. Panthers (
The best plays of the Broncos' 21-20 win.

Ware shines in return to action (Aric DiLalla)
On Thursday, he got a little closer to that mark. Despite missing all of organized team activities and training camp, Ware reminded the Broncos that he's still got quite a bit left in the tank.

Three Keys Unlocked: Broncos 21, Panthers 20 (Andrew Mason)
What does it say about the Broncos that they can lose the turnover battle, commit costly penalties and still defeat a team that came into Sports Authority Field at Mile High having won 19 of its last 20 regular-season games?

Photos: Broncos triumph over the Panthers (
The best shots of the Broncos' victory.