Broncos sign Porter, who was Manning’s SB 44 nemesis

Tracy Porter's biggest NFL moment came at the expense of Peyton Manning on the biggest stage in American sports. Now, the two will be wearing orange together.

Porter (5-11, 186), whose interception of Manning and subsequent touchdown in SB 44 finished off the Colts' bid for a second championship in four seasons, agreed to join the Broncos on a one-year deal, it was reported.

The 2008 second-rounder (40th overall, Indiana) started 39 of the 43 games he played in during four seasons with the Saints, compiling 194 tackles, one sack, 32 passes defensed, seven interceptions, and four forced fumbles along the way.

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Larsen joins Fells, McDaniels in New England

Patriots agree to terms with Spencer Larsen, one of the most Patriots-type players ever
www.bostonherald.com

If there is one thing the Patriots love, it’s versatility. Coach Bill Belichick is fond of players who play two positions, and that came up over and over and over in 2011.

The Patriots reached a two-year agreement today with the former Broncos jack-of-all-trades, a source confirmed. That gives Belichick another one of his type of guys.

Three years ago the Broncos became Patriots West; is the reverse now happening?

Tebow/Elway engaged in he said/he said over trade choice/non-choice

Elway said Broncos gave Tebow a choice
blogs.denverpost.com

Elway, in an interview Thurdsay on 102.3 ESPN radio in Denver, said Jacksonville’s offer was actually worth slightly more than the offer from the Jets. Jacksonville’s draft slot is 10 places higher than the Jets in each round.

“There was more from Jacksonville, but I think that we looked at it and it was close enough, and we were in contact with Tim throughout the day, and talked to him,” Elway said. “He knew what was going on the whole time. The reports that he was not involved are not accurate.”

Tebow, in a conference call with New York reporters late Wednesday night, said the Broncos held “all the power.”

Clearly, Tim doesn't want any of his fellow Floridians thinking he chose the bright lights of New York over a chance to head home, right?

Scouting the Draft: Centers

I’ve fielded this question several times now, so let’s get straight into it - there’s probably not a lot of chance that Denver will take a center this year in the draft. I hope I’m wrong, but the facts are that John Fox really likes J.D. Walton’s blue collar attitude and work ethic. He’s dubbed J.D. ‘Trash Can’ as a result. The OL is the second-youngest in the NFL, and adding a rookie center would only exacerbate that unless that player is a major upgrade over Trashy.  Denver looks, right now, as if they may try to keep the line together and let them mature as a group. Whatever my own feelings on that, it currently is how things stand. Jeff Saturday is still a possibility, and is scheduled to visit, but that’s about it as far as I’ve seen.

Even so, there’s really nothing like a good old position battle, and the centers from this year’s Combine are having a beauty over who is the best center in the draft. The question will be answered not by which goes first, but which plays best, but right how they’re jockeying for position with the fans, and it’s fun to watch. 

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Free agents weren’t the only ones who couldn’t wait on Peyton Manning

Obituary For Dead Broncos Fan Says He Hated Peyton Manning And "Wanted Out Before A Deal Was Done"
deadspin.com

He sounds like a decent guy, and a big-time Broncos fan. But he was more the Tebow sort, according to the opening paragraph of his obituary in the Columbia Tribune:

James H. “Jim” Driver, 78, of Eagle, Colo., formerly of Columbia, passed away Monday, March 19, 2012, at South Hampton Place in Columbia after a brief illness. An avid Broncos fan, he abhorred Manning and evidently wanted out before a deal was done.

One assumes Jim's family and friends have a good sense of humor. 

Kiss those Mike Wallace dreams goodbye

The 49ers inquired about Mike Wallace but ...
blogs.sacbee.com

How much? A league source said that Wallace, 25, wants a contract that surpasses the eight-year, $120 million deal that Larry Fitzgerald signed last year with the Cardinals. Combine that with the first-round pick any team that signs Wallace to an offer sheet would lose if the Steelers didn’t match the offer, and you start to understand why we’ve heard so little about Wallace in the last week and a half.

Yeah, never mind.

Another wild day for Broncos, NFL Lard 3-22-12

Good Morning, Broncos fans! What a day for the Broncos and the NFL, and where to start? Suppose we should go in chronological order, because my head is still spinning.

Roger Goodell lowered the boom on the Saints, whose SB 44 win will be forever tarnished by their bounty scandal: the Commish fined the team and took away two second-rounders, suspended Mickey Loomis (eight games), Sean Payton (the entire 2012 season), Gregg Williams (indefinitely), and Joe Vitt (six games); more to come once the league finishes investigating individual players.

Williams issued another apology; Drew Brees is stunned by the developments, but he now has a truckload of leverage in his contract negotiations with the team. NFLN's Warren Sapp unleashed his big, fat mouth fingers on Twitter, accusing Jeremy Shockey of being the "snitch" who blew the whistle on the institutionalized head hunting. Of course, we're still talking about something that's likely always been a part of the league's culture. But this heavy punishment was not just about injuring players - it was Goodell reminding everyone who's boss - and the Saints will be feeling the pain all year long.

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Gut Reaction: End of the Tebow era

In his press conference tonight with the New York media, Tim Tebow once again took the road less traveled.

That's because no one takes the high road any longer.  

He thanked his fans in Denver, spoke highly of his new coaches and teammates, and reaffirmed his commitment to being a team player--even if it meant sitting behind Mark Sanchez and playing in wildcat packages. He also reaffirmed his commitment to working hard and improving as a quarterback. Simply put, he was typically Tim Tebow.

As I listened to Tebow, I couldn't help but remember another former Broncos quarterback that left Denver after only a few seasons: Jay Cutler. Although blessed with twice the talent, Cutler was half the man on his way out of town. Pouting was his brush; sulking his paint; melancholy his work of art. Tebow would have none of this silliness. It's beneath him. He wouldn't waste his energy on such trivial things.

There's another key difference between Cutler and Tebow, and it's this: Tebow will forever be etched in Broncos lore. No matter what happens during his time in the league, he joins a list that we all hold dear.  This list includes Craig Morton, John Elway, Brian Griese, and Jake Plummer. What do they have in common? All of them have taken the Denver Broncos to the playoffs. 

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Woody Paige taking Tebow trade better than expected

Woody Paige: Tim Tebow run out of Denver, but Broncos will never see another like him
www.denverpost.com

Why are the Broncos getting rid of Tebow? Because they signed Peyton Manning, and he’s the only (available) quarterback that could have displaced Tebow, and Elway et al. feel they can win the Super Bowl soon with Manning, probably not with Tebow.

Why did they not keep Tebow as the backup now and the starter in the future? Because it wouldn’t have worked. Tebow wouldn’t get the necessary work in practices or games to help his development as a passer.

Why didn’t the Broncos move him to another position or use him as a Wildcat? Because Tebow has been told his whole life he couldn’t be a quarterback, and he is determined to be a long-term starting quarterback in pro football. He wouldn’t move.

Why did John Elway say Tebow would be the starter in training camp if he didn’t mean it? Because Elway didn’t realize then there would be a chance at Manning. The sincere intention by the Broncos was to play Tebow next season.

Why did the Broncos think Tebow couldn’t become a great passer? Because of his flawed throwing mechanics and footwork.

Got to hand it to Woody. He's taking the trade with a measured sense of perspective.

Broncos took best deal; Tebow had no input; Jets declare Sanchez starter

Contrary to previous reports, the Broncos did what was in their self interest as an organization.

Vic Lombardi reports:

NEWS: I can confirm the Jets offered the better draft picks. The Jags package was less attractive. The Broncos chose the Jets.

Mike Klis confirmed this:

Jags offered same $2.53 million rebate as Jets. No more. Difference was Jets gave 6th to Broncos in return for 7th. A 40-plus move up.

Lombardi also confirmed that neither Tebow nor his brother Robby had any input into the trade.

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