Bill Williamson’s Summer Jam 2012

AFC West: 2012 backup quarterback
espn.go.com

Assessing the Broncos’ backup QB situation if Peyton Manning is injured and misses time.

Caleb Hanie was a bust in Chicago, but the Broncos believe he fits their system and he can be a solid backup to Manning this year. He is big and strong and has some skill. Yet, he was a disaster last season in Chicago when Jay Cutler went down. Hanie was 0-4 as a starter. He is in an interesting position because Manning has to prove he is healed from a neck injury that cost him the entire 2011 season. If Manning can’t come back, the Broncos will be banking on Hanie early. It’s a major risk. The Broncos drafted long-term prospect Brock Osweiler, but the team doesn’t plan on him being a No. 2 this early in his career.

Confidence rating (out of 100) if Manning goes out for an extended period: 30.

What does Bill Williamson do when pressed for content during the slow summer months?  He creates a confidence index for Caleb Hanie and Brock Osweiler.

I'm 30% confident you'll find this episode of Sports Science, in which some guy takes a record-setting kick to the testicles, more exciting.

Apparently, Williamson hasn't figured out that when there isn't much Broncos news, you should just give the people what they want: Tim Tebow bath salts.

Ty Warren accepts pay cut from Broncos

Ty Warren has ended his unofficial holdout and joined the team for today's OTAs. Denver had sought to cut the veteran defensive tackle's salary from a contracted $4M down to $1M-1.5M according to earlier reports.

The former Texas A&M Aggie and first-round pick of the Patriots spent eight seasons with New England before signing a two-year, $8M free-agent deal with the Broncos last August. But a torn triceps muscle suffered during training camp caused him to miss the season; a hip injury had cost Warren his 2010 season.

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What Ray Bradbury can teach you

As you've probably heard by now, the great science fiction writer Ray Bradbury passed away today at the age of 91.  Since I (mostly) stay on topics that have some relation to football or a football-related event, I won't rehash the greatness of Bradbury here.  What I will do, however, is pass along a quote from Bradbury that you'll find useful in your own life:

The Muse must have shape. You will write a thousand words a day for ten to twenty years in order to try to give it shape, to learn enough about grammar and story construction so that these become part of the Subconscious, without restraining or distorting the Muse.

This quote comes from the book Zen and The Art of Writing.

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Day 1 in David Tyree’s American Apocalypse

Wade Davis talks for the first time about being gay in the NFL, working with LGBTQ youth
outsports.com

“You just want to be one of the guys, and you don’t want to lose that sense of family,” Davis says. “Your biggest fear is that you’ll lose that camaraderie and family. I think about how close I was with Jevon and Samari. It’s not like they’d like me less, it’s that they have to protect their own brand.”

When I caught up with Kearse at the NFLPA’s Rookie Premiere event in May, he still remembered Davis fondly a decade later. “That’s my dog,” Kearse said. He had no idea that Davis was gay until that event last month. “I know there have been a lot more than just Wade,” Kearse said upon learning of Davis’ sexual orientation. “It’s just becoming more acceptable, which is a good thing so they can come out and not feel secluded.”

Eddie George was on the other side of the ball with the Titans while Davis was there. The former Heisman Trophy winner didn’t know Davis was gay at the time, but he feels a gay athlete on that Titans team would have been accepted. “I don’t see it as a problem,” George said. “I don’t think it would have been a problem at all.”

Watch out, David Tyree.  It appears as if your version of American Anarchy is indeed coming true (or should we say, out?).

Like Tyree, I'm so concerned about the slippery slope that is gay rights, and by default, my hometown being renamed Sodom or Gomorrah, I'm proposing we create individual showers and bathrooms for each and every NFL player--you know, just in case those secretly-gay players get any secretly-gay ideas. Stock each bathroom with a copy of The King James (or Through My Eyes), and we'll stave them off.

David Tyree, I'm scared, too. We let the gays come out now, and what's next? Other players start catching "gayness" like the flu, and soon, sooner than you and your children--wrapped in innocence and preocuppied with Call of Duty: Modern Warfare--can lock the doors to your home and bomb shelter, Roger Goodell (that sissy) wears a rainbow pin.

Tim on Tebowing & Googling

Tim Tebow: I’m Too Busy to Google Myself
mashable.com

“Let’s be honest, I’m not the first athlete to get on a knee and pray,” Tebow told Shira Lazar. “For some reason, it just caught on this year.”

Lazar asked Tebow if he’s conscious of what the Internet says about him.

“I’m too busy to Google myself,” he replied with a smile.

Google yourself? How bourgeois.

As the head of nerdery around here, I give you Mashable's lighthearted interview with Tim Tebow, in which he's asked about the Tebowing meme and how closely he may follow himself online.

The Daily Lard 6-6-12

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Linebackers Joe Mays and Wesley Woodyard (videos) spoke after practice yesterday.

Mays expects the outside presence of Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil to force opposing offenses to run and throw at him instead, and he thinks Von will be even better in 2012 than he was last year.

Mays and Woodyard are both excited to see larger bodies at defensive tackle this year and expect this development to leave the two of them free to make more plays. Wesley appreciates that DC Jack Del Rio was himself an NFL linebacker, and he's been showing fellow Kentucky alum Danny Trevathan the ropes.

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Cosell: You’re all wrong about Jay Cutler

Cosell Talks: The Perception and Reality of Jay Cutler
nflfilms.nfl.com

When you watch as much tape as I do, only the most singular plays from years past remain embedded in memory. Yet, there’s one from Cutler’s third NFL start with the Denver Broncos — against the Arizona Cardinals — that still stands out in my mind. Cutler, off play action, rolled by design to his left. He turned his front shoulder, balanced his feet with his back foot planted, and then, in the face of pressure, threw it 65 yards in the air. It dropped accurately and easily into the hands of Javon Walker, as if Cutler had handed it to him. It was one of the best throws I had ever seen, one very few NFL quarterbacks would have even attempted, never mind completed.

I always believed the pairing of Cutler and Mike Shanahan in Denver would have yielded positive results over time. Unfortunately, circumstances prevented that from happening.

"Unfortunately, circumstances prevented that from happening..."

Around these parts, those circumstances go by the name of Josh McDaniels.

I'm not 100% certain, but I believe the records will also show that around 1994, Guns N' Roses hired McDaniels as their new manager.

So, Peyton…what are your tastes in Halloween candy?

A First For Peyton Manning
www.850koa.com

Even after 13 years in the NFL, Manning said Denver reporters asked him a question after Monday’s workout he had never gotten before.

“People are passionate about their football,” he said. “I’m not going to lie, I had an all-time first today. I was being asked about some incompletions that we threw in practice. That’s just never happened to me before. That’s kind of like asking Todd why he didn’t hit more home runs in batting practice.”

Manning also tells Dave Krieger he's enjoying being reunited with ex-Volunteers teammate Todd Helton, that he and Demaryius Thomas kept working after practice yesterday, and that he's of course unhappy with the more stringent practice rules that accompanied the latest CBA.

BTW, Peyton - go with Reese's peanut butter cups. They worked out fine 29 years ago, and their greatness endures.

Sirius XM NFL Radio and its associated scams

As the kind of person who constantly experiences mental stimulus in day-to-day life, I often get interested in something based on that stimulus and seek out information on it.  I'd bet I use the Wikipedia app on my iPhone 10 times a day when some random thing gets mentioned, and I want to know more about it.  I’m an intellectually curious person, and the downside of that is that it’s sometimes easy to get distracted by stuff, and pulled strongly in a strange direction, if only temporarily.

I don’t say this to sneer at those who are less intellectually curious than I am, but rather to help you understand where I’m coming from.  A longtime reader claimed last week that all I like to do is talk about which stupid people annoy me on a given day, and I suppose I can see where that comes from.  I think it’s an overly simplistic take, and there’s always a larger point to what I am writing about than simply to criticize somebody, but I sometimes do write more candidly and less collegially than is the norm.

This part of the offseason is kind of a tough time, because nothing very interesting is going on.  I get my information from my eyes, and my eyes can’t see anything right now, you know?  For that reason, I get a bit distracted by other shiny things going on, and rather than write vacuous tripe about nothing going on, like a newspaper columnist has to, I often feel like writing about other stuff.

The way I see it, I’ve got an audience, and I want to benefit and serve that audience the best way I can every time I write - even if they don’t necessarily know what the topic will be on a given day.  Plus, it’s fun to piss off the ninnies and the trolls who flame us via email.  Then, we say, oh yeah, that guy’s an idiot, and we all have a big group laugh at his expense.  (That was my obligatory idiot-calling of the column.)

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Stokley and Manning: Bromance, rekindled

Brandon Stokley on Reuniting with Peyton Manning: “It doesn’t take us long to get back on the same page. It’s been a blast from the past.”
sportsradiointerviews.com

Well we have been doing it a lot longer than other guys. It doesn’t take us long to get back on the same page. I know what he likes. I know what he wants. For me it’s been a blast from the past. I am having fun and like you said in those two plays it was kind of like six years ago. It’s definitely helped that I’ve had a relationship with him in Indy for four years and I practiced with him a lot. I am trying to continue to build off that.

Wow, this makes the J-Cutty/BMarsh love affair sound more like a pen pal relationship.

Seriously though, the Slot Machine's role in bringing Peyton to Denver cannot be overemphasized, and it's hard to say if PMFM would be a Bronco were it not for Stokley. But, he is.

Thank You, Stokes.

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