Long time lurker, new poster. Apologies if I ramble...
Some thoughts on a how we'll play Denver from a psych perspective:
The media has spent a week inventing narratives about this game b/c a) Denver is pretty boring aside from the "Manning Legacy" trope (which Peyton shot down immediately) and b) Hawks have been consistently on message/vanilla to a man.
Unfortunately, this new narrative has centered on calling out the Beast for his typical beastly antics with the media...which cannot be making him happy. I think this team rallies around their heart and soul, a dude whose response isn't cerebral and calculated like #25, but rather a singular primal focus on the Action which amplifies the existing game plan of physical and mental domination of Denver...and it won't be fun for the donkeys.
Clearly this team could care less about their national perception, "class", and what the media thinks (especially now)…history has shown we could give a rip about winning Miss Congeniality. What better way to show the world the boulder on your shoulder than bashing your opponent in the face with it?
We may be playing it straight and nice now, but fully intend to impose their will on Manning and co. from the first whistle. Think The U getting off the plane at the '86 Fiesta Bowl in camo, we are the biggest bad asses in the league and will make you know it.
As discussed in some of exceptional content on FG, Kam and the LBs will (cleanly) make Welker and Julius regret each cross and pick route they run. The LOB will press and contest every route. The DL will get their licks in on Moreno and Manning. The OL and Beast will hammer their front seven (even for minimal gains). Heck, I wouldn't be surprised if Ricardo Lockette nearly takes a man's head off again. I fully expect Peyton to move the ball and get his points, and I'm sure we'll get some flags. But over the course of the game (especially the 2nd half), I believe we will make every effort to physically and psychologically break Denver.
By the 4th quarter, I believe our raw physical talent and mental conditioning implemented by Carroll kick in. After being beaten and bullied the whole game, do they even for a second reconsider making the tackle or catching that pass? If the answer is yes, it could be the difference in the game given our talent on both sides of the ball. And I believe we've seen all season we are prepared, we should even thank our division foes (thank guys!) for preparing us for all-out war. I think in a lot of ways this is Pete’s opus, he's got these guys ready to compete and execute, and he has never had a problem completely and utterly destroying his opposition when given a chance. Even if the scoreboard doesn't necessarily reflect it, the game could be won early on if/when we Bust the Broncos.
And it will be glorious.