ENGLEWOOD, Colo. --Nothing has gone according to plan for the New York Giants in their 0-5 start. From Odell Beckham Jr.'s first injury in a preseason game against the Cleveland Browns to his second, season-ending fractured ankle last week against the Los Angeles Chargers, the Giants have seen a season that began with hopes that they could build off last year's 11-5 finish spiral out of control.
Beckham's injuries were damaging enough, but they were only the beginning of the Giants' woes. Fellow receivers Brandon Marshall and Dwayne Harris are also on injured reserve, and Sterling Shepard will miss Sunday's game with an ankle injury. Running back Paul Perkins, offensive lineman Weston Richburg and defensive end Olivier Vernon also will not play.
But the Broncos know they can't look past the Giants.
"If you don't show up in this business every week, you're going to get your butt kicked," running back C.J. Anderson said. "One thing holds true: we know the Giants are 0-5. But, we also know they have Pro Bowl players.
"It doesn't matter what the record is and what they do. Their goal is to come in here and get a 'W.' Our goal is also to win. Both teams have one thing in common."
Only one can get what it wants Sunday night. What are the keys to the Broncos being victorious?
1. Continue stopping the run first
The Giants struggled to run the football in their first four games, but against the Chargers last week, they found a groove, racking up 152 yards on the ground -- 93 more than their average in Weeks 1-4. But the Broncos come into Week 6 as the league's leaders in run defense on both a per-game and a per-carry basis.
"They're going to try to establish a run because they have to run the ball," said inside linebacker Brandon Marshall. "We just have to be on our game."
- Limit mistakes**
It's always important to avoid turnovers, but in a matchup like Sunday's, giveaways and self-inflicted mistakes represent the Giants' clearest path to an upset. The Broncos avoided turnovers two weeks ago against the Raiders, but struggled with miscues in the red zone, allowing the game to remain competitive until the final moments.
Those red-zone issues rankled the Broncos, even 10 days after the game.
"We don't accept in victory what we wouldn't accept in defeat, and we mean that," Anderson said Wednesday. "So if we're 5-of-5 in the red zone against Dallas, and we won, that felt good. We won the game against Oakland, but we're 0-for-4 in the red zone. We definitely don't accept that. So that's the standard that we uphold here."
Speaking of standards ...
- Play your game; don't worry about the Giants**
This week, President of Football Operations/General Manager John Elway and Head Coach Vance Joseph referred to the concept of meeting the team's own standards.
"It hasn't been a problem as far as getting our guys up to play. Again, it's really about our standards," Joseph said. "Each week you want to work to the point where you can play your best game each week. It doesn't matter who you're playing. That hasn't changed for us. Our goal Sunday is to play our best game of the year thus far."
That has filtered to the locker room.
"You don't look at the record or who's been injured," defensive end Derek Wolfe said. "We live up to our standards. We're going to play our football. It's about us, not about them."