Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning.
Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning. (Steve Nehf, The Denver Post)

After the Broncos' video department has completed its work of packaging snippets of Kansas City game tape, specific for each Denver position coach, some time likely will be spent on gathering pertinent plays and formations of teams the Broncos could face in the playoffs.

Just don't expect Broncos coach John Fox to take a peek.

"Nope, because then I wouldn't be keeping my focus," Fox said Monday.

On Sunday against the Chiefs, Fox will be going after his 100th NFL victory. He did not get this far by getting ahead of himself and overlooking the task at hand.

In professional football, the long term takes care of itself if the short term is attended to, Fox says. His coaching style is more micro than macro. The calendar affixed to his office wall need only show a week at a time.

"This is a 'What have you done for me lately?' league," Fox said.

Somebody strutting along with their head in the clouds can get tripped up by something as small as a crack in the sidewalk. Fox doesn't want his players gloating over the Broncos' 12-3 record or even thinking about playoff scenarios. They had better be focused on the Chiefs.

And never mind that the Chiefs have won just twice all season.

"We don't look at records; we look at (game) tape," Fox explained when asked Monday about his coaching philosophy. "I know it's a cliche, but on any given Sunday (any NFL team can beat you), and there's evidence of it every week.

"Every one of these games takes on its own personality as far as matchups, weaknesses, all those things."

It's easy, Fox said, to convince players to focus only on the present while they're dissecting game tape of the upcoming opponent. The Broncos' current 10-game winning streak was built seven days at a time.

"What we have stressed all year is to just improve every week," Fox said. "Our guys understand there is great parity in our league. Everybody's got players. They all practice and get paid (as professionals). I think that's just the mantra we've used — it's the next game, trying to improve. That's not going to change."

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Fox said this team has responded remarkably well to his tunnel-vision philosophy. But anybody who shows the least inclination to daydream may also have to answer to quarterback Peyton Manning, who became a team leader the moment he signed a free-agent contract with the Broncos.

Manning gets so locked in on his daily duties, one could joke that he probably has no clue about who Denver will face the week after. Manning practices like he plays — each repetition could be the one that leads to victory, even if the game still is days away.

"We talk about that a lot, not coasting, pedal downhill," Fox said. "I appreciate Peyton. I think that's a big reason why he's accomplished what he's accomplished, whether it's here or in Indianapolis. He's a tremendous competitor who doesn't let up. I think that's how you need to be to be successful."

Manning also has a motto.

"It's always been: 'Prepare hard. Practice hard. Work hard. And play hard,' " he said. "So that's what I try to do."

The entire team appears to have bought in. Regardless of the level of the opposition, the Broncos have been amazingly consistent during the winning streak. Each of the 10 victories in a row has been by at least a touchdown.

"It's is not about any other team that we're facing," linebacker Wesley Woodyard said. "It is about us. That's the mentality. Ten games in a row — we just have to keep going and take it one week at a time. Our goal is to be the last team standing."

Tom Kensler: 303-954-1280, tkensler@denverpost.com or twitter.com/tomkensler


The beat goes on

The Broncos have been consistent throughout a 10-game winning streak:

Date Opponent Score Margin of victory
Oct. 15 at San Diego 35-24 11 points
Oct. 28 New Orleans 34-14 20 points
Nov. 4 at Cincinnati 31-23 8 points
Nov. 11 at Carolina 36-14 22 points
Nov. 18 San Diego 30-23 7 points
Nov. 25 at Kansas City 17-9 8 points
Dec. 2 Tampa Bay 31-23 8 points
Dec. 6 at Oakland 26-13 13 points
Dec. 16 at Baltimore 34-17 17 points
Dec. 23 Cleveland 34-12 22 points