APTOPIX Broncos Raiders Football

Raiders running back Josh Jacobs celebrates his touchdown against the Broncos during an Oct. 2 game in Las Vegas.

Denver Gazette sports editor Paul Klee has three more thoughts on Broncos-Chargers on Sunday:

1. The Broncos should sign Josh Jacobs

If you can’t beat 'em, sign 'em. Raiders star running Josh Jacobs is the NFL’s leading rusher with 1,608 yards. What a beast. But you know what’s even cooler? Jacobs is set to be a free agent after this season — in a loaded class of free-agent running backs that includes the likes of Saquon Barkley (1,312 yards), Miles Sanders (1,236) and Tony Pollard (988). No one’s beaten up the Broncos worse than Jacobs, who is 7-0 vs. the Broncos and averages over 100 yards and a touchdown per matchup. Considering Broncos star Javonte Williams could miss four games on the PUP list as he recovers from knee surgery, according to ace writer George Stoia, the Broncos sure could benefit from a beast in the backfield. And what’s better than gifting Russell Wilson with a dynamite running game while boosting the Raiders’ best player?

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2. NCAA investigation won't impact Jim Harbaugh's candidacy with Broncos

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Will the NCAA investigation into Michigan’s football program impact Jim Harbaugh’s decision to stay or go? Doubt it. The situation reminds a bit of Pete Carroll’s situation at USC before he leaped to the Seahawks. Whether or not you believe him, Carroll has said he would not have left USC if he had known the NCAA was going to drop the hammer on the Trojans. “When I look back now, I would have stayed there to do what we needed to do to resolve the problem,” Carroll said in 2014. Michigan reportedly faces four Level II violations and one Level I violation, the most severe. Harbaugh did little to quiet speculation on his future Thursday: “As I stated in December, while no one knows what the future holds, I expect that I will be enthusiastically coaching Michigan in 2023.” While no one knows what the future holds, I expect Harbaugh is the No. 1 or 1A choice on coaching boards, including the Broncos'.

3. Righting Russ

You know what would be swell to see Sunday? Russell Wilson beginning to rebuild his own confidence. While the $245 million quarterback says his confidence does not waver, a slew of teammates on offense going out of their way to lift him up on social media suggests they saw a man who needed a lift. Hard to believe, but it’s been over three months since Wilson won a game on American turf — Week 3, a win over the San Francisco 49ers that’s also hard to believe. The Broncos show two wins since then — a triumph over the Jags in London and a win over the Cardinals with Brett Rypien at quarterback. Count me in the crowd that believes it would do Wilson and the Broncos a boatload of good to beat the Chargers, who will sit their stars if the game has no impact on their playoff seeding. How does a sad season end on a happy note? Two touchdowns from Russ, smiles and hugs after a 17-16 Broncos win.

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(Contact Gazette sports columnist Paul Klee at paul.klee@gazette.com or on Twitter at @bypaulklee.)

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Game analysis and insights from The Gazette sports staff including columns by Woody Paige and Paul Klee.

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