CLEVELAND** – Quarterback Peyton Manning isn't one to sugarcoat anything, but a win is a win.
The offense may not exactly be putting up the kind of production he would have hoped, but with the 26-23 overtime win over the Browns, Denver remains unbeaten heading into its bye week.
"Well, I mean we're certainly not playing as well as we would like," Manning said. "But we're playing well enough to win. We're doing some things right, at critical times when we have to, whether it's the last drive of the game, or in overtime and we're going to continue to work and try to improve on the red zone and third down."
Last week against the Raiders, the offense was unable to find the end zone one any of its three red-zone chances, relying solely on kicker Brandon McManus and the defense to put points on the scoreboard.
Against the Browns, the Broncos were able to score via a 75-yard touchdown reception by Emmanuel Sanders 7:07 into the fourth quarter, but again, the offense stalled inside the Cleveland 20 on all three opportunities.
"Obviously we are still going through a transition," Manning said. "We are trying to get on the same page and get comfortable and the injures have not helped that transition …. It is by no means been easy but coach Kubiak and I continue to talk. We are committed to trying to get on the same page and get to where he and I get a good feel for each other and we're both committed to the cause."
While there may have been some critical miscues made by Manning and the offense, there were also some flashes of cohesion, especially in the final drive in overtime when they were able to piece together a series and get close enough for McManus to secure the win.
"I thought execution was really good," Manning said of the final series. "I thought they have a good defense, but I thought we did a good job kind of staying in phase, staying out of the third-and-long [situations]. [There were] some positive runs and then, like I said, we were able to get them in a third and one situation there at the end and get into field goal range. I can't speak for them, but I know our execution was better on that last drive."
Denver will now get a chance to regroup and heal in its Week 7 bye, which couldn't come at a better time. The Broncos' Week 8 home game will be against the Green Bay Packers, who have also remained undefeated through the first five weeks and look to seal No. 6 Sunday against the Chargers.
"I think this bye week comes at a good time where we can study some things we've done in the first six weeks and see what has worked and maybe what's not working as well," Manning said. "I think as much as you use it for rest you use it to kind of … do a little self-[scouting] and see what things are working for us and what things we can build on and that's what we'll do during this time I think."