Peyton Manning often had two tight ends in his Colts offenses, utilizing Dallas Clark, Marcus Pollard, Ben Utecht and Jacob Tamme, among others in his passing game. So when Manning came to Denver, the Broncos added a pair of tight ends, and it has provided another dynamic for opponents to stop.
Tamme and Joel Dreessen combined for 93 catches for 911 yards and seven touchdowns this season. Dreessen, who had experience playing in a two-TE system from his time in Houston, excelled in the red zone (four touchdown catches) and played a majority of snaps as a blocker as well.
“It gives us a lot of flexibility. If we want to be physical and run the ball, we can use two tight ends that way,” Dreessen told PFW. “If we want to create mismatches, we can certainly do that. Jacob is very talented as a route runner and receiver, and they have to find someone to cover him.”
Dreessen has been a key in the short-to-intermediate passing game — his 8.7-yards-per-catch average is his lowest since 2008 — but Dreessen caught 70.7 percent of the passes thrown his way, helped by his Pro Bowl quarterback.
“(Manning) is remarkably talented with his arm. He makes us better as a receiver because if you’re open, he throws it perfectly to the spot,” Dreessen said.
Denver enters the playoffs as the AFC’s top team, thanks to an 11-game win streak to end the season. As Manning and his pass catchers have become more comfortable, the Broncos have been nearly impossible to stop, and Dreessen explained how the team’s arsenal on offense keeps defenses from slowing them down.
“We have a lot of things that we can check to. How (the defense) lines up, we can certainly check to something that gives us an advantage,” he said. “We have a lot of stuff in our back pocket.”