Fat Camp: Thoughts on the no-huddle and balanced offense

A new way of playing offense has come to Denver, one that’s new to us, anyway.  When they went without a huddle Sunday night, the Broncos became unstoppable.

When you combine the brilliance of Peyton Manning with the altitude of Denver, you’re cooking with gas when you can sustain no-huddle drives.  I’m not in complete agreement with Doug’s article from Monday, and I want to give you a slightly different take.  First, I want to clarify the no-huddle, and second, I want to touch on some strategic offensive thinking.

I want everybody to understand the no-huddle better than it’s presented to them by the average talking head on TV.  There’s a significant amount of misunderstanding about the no-huddle, so let’s start with three key points, to level-set the discussion:

1.  The no-huddle offense is not the same thing as the hurry-up offense.  Going without a huddle allows an offense to snap the ball quickly, but it doesn’t require it to do so.  When an offense plays hurry-up, it will usually go without a huddle, but going without a huddle gives the QB wide latitude on when to snap the ball.  Peyton Manning often waits until the play clock runs down, and I’ll explain why shortly.

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Porter named AFC Defensive POW

Broncos corner Tracy Porter was named the AFC's Defensive Player of the Week for his season-opening performance against the Steelers.

The fifth-year player was credited with eight tackles (one for loss), five passes defensed, and his late interception of Ben Roethlisberger and subsequent TD return sealed the 31-19 victory for Denver.

Porter joins teammates Von Miller (2011, Week 11) and Champ Bailey (2009, Week 4) as current Broncos to have won the award for Denver.

Middle school ref to work Denver’s next game Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! DP colleagues Lindsay Jones and Jeff Legwold agree that Denver going no-huddle has to include a dose of runs, but of course, the decision of whether to huddle up has nothing to do with the choice of passing or running.

It's all about substitutions, for both the Denver offense and opposing defense.

There's nothing wrong with Peyton Manning audibling to a run play (or changing the type of run), as he often does at the line of scrimmage. If opponents want to invite Peyton to run the ball, guess what? He's not Dan Marino; he'll run the ball 50 times and throw 20 times, if that's what makes sense.

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The first rule of playing with Peyton Manning is:

Tracy Porter's interception of Ben Roethlisberger in Week 1 reminiscent of his Super Bowl pick
sportsillustrated.cnn.com

In camp, I asked Porter if he’d had a moment yet to talk to Manning about Memory Lane, about that night in South Florida when Manning, on his way to becoming a two-time Super Bowl champ, threw a pass that will live in Colts infamy.

“No,’’ he said. “I mean, we’re both professionals. It’d be sort of rookie-ish to mention it. If he wants to talk about it one day, we will, but that’s not the kind of thing I’d ever bring up to him.’‘

On Sunday night, I asked if it had come up yet with Manning.

“No,” he said.

You do not talk about your SB 44-clinching pick-six.

The second rule of playing with Peyton Manning is: You do not talk about your SB 44-clinching pick-six.

Of course, Manning's Colts were already down by a touchdown at the time of Porter's game-ender, but don't let that get in the way of a good narrative, Peter.

ANS: Manning was better than his norm on Sunday

Peyton Manning Measures Up In Broncos Debut
www.advancednflstats.com

Manning was above his own lofty career average in every notable passing statistic outside of raw passing yardage; out of 188 total games, Sunday’s ranked fifth in WPA, fourth in success rate, 40th in AYPA, 31st in EPA/P, 44th in EPA and 53rd in completion percentage—at least in the top 28% of Manning’s best games (note: Advanced NFL Stats’s numbers don’t go back far enough to include Manning’s first two seasons).

It's easy to say that Peyton Manning answered questions about whether he'd be back to form in the affirmative. However, it's important to keep in mind that as these numbers show, Peyton will not typically be as good as he was the other night, relative to efficiency and game impact.

Note to Jack Del Rio

Steelers @ Broncos, Week 1
www.profootballfocus.com

When Roethlisberger wasn’t blitzed, he had a quarterback rating of 113.7. When he was blitzed, his quarterback rating was down to 28.6.

HEED! BLITZ! NOW!

Broncos sign Koppen and Hanie, place Warren on IR, waive Davis

As expected, the Broncos have signed center Dan Koppen and brought back quarterback Caleb Hanie.

To make room for them, the team placed DT Ty Warren on IR and waived guard/center C.J. Davis. Denver also cut lineman Wayne Tribue from the practice squad.

Taking the place of Tribue on the practice squad will be DE Jamie Blatnick, who was among the team's final cuts this year after collecting seven tackles in the preseason (five solo).

Updated 5:12pm ET

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A Second Helping of Derek Wolfe vs the Steelers

Like a lot of folks, I tend to spend what time I have to watch television on things like programs on nature, astronomy, history, et cetera.

I recently caught a program that dealt with wolves, and found that they’re remarkable animals. They live in a complex society: they have a clear social hierarchy, an extensive symbolic language, and are beautiful to watch. Wolves generally hunt in packs - they work synergistically with each other to bring down prey quickly and safely (for them).

Wolves also commonly attack their prey from behind, jumping on their backs to bring them down or hamstringing them to prevent them from getting away before the full pack attacks.

Broncos defensive lineman Derek Wolfe may have seen the same program. No question, he lived much of it Week 1 against Pittsburgh; his impact on the game was first demonstrated with 9:42 remaining in the first quarter Sunday night. 

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Happy Birthday to us Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! So, IAOFM is two years old today.

It's been an entertaining and satisfying two years, to say the least. We've all been working extremely hard to try to bring you analysis as objective as a group of a team's fans can provide; we hope we've made you think and laugh along the way, and that we've lived up to the goals TJ set out for us 731 days ago (leap year, peeps).

Thanks as always for your readership and support, and for helping get the word out on our little website.

Just know that It's All Over, Fat Man! is nowhere near what we envision, and that we are constantly aiming to provide you a better product. Again, we appreciate all of you.

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Broncos agree with center Dan Koppen

Five and a half months after getting outbid for the services of center Jeff Saturday, the Broncos have agreed to terms with former longtime Patriots center Dan Koppen.

Like legendary Denver center Tom Nalen, Koppen was drafted out of Boston College, and he started 120 of the 121 games he played for New England from 2003 to 2011.

The soon-to-be 33-year-old fractured his left ankle during the Pats' 2011 opener and missed the rest of the season; he was among several notable veterans cut by the team two weeks ago.

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