It genuinely is hard to picture how the 2023-24 NFL season could have gotten off to a worse start for Sean Payton and the Denver Broncos. Not only 0-3, they are coming off one of the most embarrassing losses in league history after a 70-20 beatdown at the hands of the Miami Dolphins in Week 3.
To make matters worse, former Broncos wide receiver Brandon Stokley ripped into the new head coach after he was feisty with the local media after yet another loss on Sunday.
“Honestly here, and I'm a Sean Payton fan here. He has treated the local media differently. Right? You don’t get passes when you come in and you try to change everything and you treat the local media one way but the national media another way,” Stokley said on Monday, according to Awful Announcing.
“You're their best friend. They can have full access and whatever they want, whatever they need, they've got. Local media? We've been relegated. All of a sudden, everything looks different than in the past and the performance was awful.”
The comment was made on a radio show that Stokley hosts alongside Josh Dover on 104.3 The Fan in Denver, in response to Payton's curt response to a question from a member of the local media after Sunday's brutal defeat.
Brandon Stokley played 15 seasons in the NFL, three of them with the Broncos between 2007-09.
“You've just got to get up there and take it like a big boy,” the former receiver continued. “You do not need to fire back at a reporter like that. It's uncalled for, it's unnecessary. I can promise you this, promise you! If that was a national reporter, if that was Seth Wickersham or Jarrett Bell, he wouldn’t have answered it like that I can promise you that. And that's what pisses me off.”
There were high expectations for the Broncos after trading for Russell Wilson and bringing in the former New Orleans Saints coach, but things have clearly gone off the rails early.
In what is already looking like a lost season for Sean Payton's team, the next few weeks will be crucial if this team hopes to stay afloat in the AFC West.