Broncos-Patriots news and notes

Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson

Postgame news and notes:

  • If the Broncos have to play without Champ Bailey for a long period of the time, this defense is going to be in trouble. Dre' Bly has been exploited often since coming to Denver. He'd probably be joined by rookie Jack Williams in the starting lineup if Bailey has to miss an extended period of time with the groin injury he suffered against the Patriots. I don't know how Denver would survive that loss.

  • Calvin Lowry, picked up on waivers in early September, replaced Marlon McCree in the starting lineup because of McCree's play in the run defense. The run defense didn't improve with Lowry as the Patriots crushed the Broncos on the ground.

  • In his postgame press conference, Denver coach Mike Shanahan said quarterback Jay Cutler does not have a broken finger. Cutler injured the finger on the first play of the game. Cutler finished the game and will likely be fine when Denver comes out of its bye week on Nov. 2 against Miami.

  • Denver had one bright spot on a miserable night: It had a season-high six sacks.

  • I wonder if New England will re-sign safety John Lynch if Rodney Harrison is out for an extended period of time. New England cut Lynch in September. Lynch, 37, has said often he wants to play again. Lynch, who asked for his release from Denver in July, is similar to Harrison on and off the field and he could fill a void both on the field in the locker room in New England.