Good Morning, Broncos fans! Denver is reportedly among several teams to have shown interest in Bears DT Amobi Okoye, the remarkable young man who graduated from Louisville at 19 years old before the Texans drafted him 10th overall in 2007.
Meanwhile, the team may end up bringing back WR Brandon Stokley as had been rumored shortly after Denver signed Peyton Manning. DT Marcus Thomas is apparently choosing between the Broncos and two other teams, and Denver is also trying to re-sign DE Jason Hunter.
Today's article from Albert Breer may give Broncos fans pause. Breer suggests that the velocity on Peyton Manning's throws was already in decline during 2010--before his neck injury. Breer writes:
"The fall-off was significant on film," said one scout from a rival AFC team. "He showed stiffness and lost athletic traits. What made him special was never his athletic ability or movement skills, but you could see it with his arm strength, too. We break the field into 'short', 'intermediate' and 'deep', and on patterns deep and outside the numbers, you'd notice more air under the ball. There'd be more arc. Some it's by design, placing the ball where it needs to be. But it looked like his velocity was tailing off at the end of 2010. That's probably what he's most worried about. His rotation was fine, his accuracy was fine. But as far as the ball getting from Point A to Point B, and how much time he was giving defensive backs to drive on the football, there was enough there for concern."
The questions about Manning's arm strength go all the way back to the day he was drafted (Ryan Leaf had a stronger arm, after all). However, was it possible that in 2010, Manning had lost too much zip on his passes? The statistics certainly suggest as much. His Y/A, AY/A, NY/A, and ANY/A were all down by a full yard. At the same time, guys like Blair White, Pierre Garcon (which I believe means "dropped pass" in French), and Austin Collie weren't helping Manning's cause. And we saw what happened to the Colts in 2011 without Manning: they went down like they'd been shot by a sniper.
Manning has had other seasons with lower numbers than he had in 2010. So what is one to make of all of this?
Bowlen for dollars: How the Broncos are spending in NFL free agency
Remember that $40 million in salary cap space the Broncos had entering the 2012 offseason? They figured out how to spend it. In the past 10 days, Broncos owner Pat Bowlen has invested nearly $140 million in nine players.
As for new info, the total value of Jacob Tamme's deal is $8M rather than $9M, while the terms for the contracts of Adams, Woodyard, Caldwell, and Hanie were not previously released, to our knowledge.
Broncos staff came to watch Friday’s 55-pass workout. How did he look? “With Peyton, his release time is important, and that’s right on target now,” said Cutcliffe. “His velocity is right on. His arm slot is right on. His accuracy’s amazing. Obviously I’m close to him, but I’ve watched him throw for almost 20 years now, and I’m really excited about what I think is going to happen. He’s going to be great when he needs to be great.”
Obviously it's a must-read, but it's not long on new information, save that Manning met with Mike and Kyle Shanahan while he was in Denver, after Washington's trade up to the second-overall draft spot had apparently taken Peyton aback.
Happy Tuesday, friends, and welcome back to Fat Camp. Today, as part of the ongoing series covering the Manning offense, I’ve decided to do some work on identification concepts that Peyton will use in diagnosing the defense and getting the Broncos into the right play. Most of this stuff is standard across all teams, and all offenses, but it’s so important to what we’ll see from the Broncos that it deserves a couple thousand words and prominent placement on a football Tuesday.
If you missed Part 1 from Saturday, here’s the link:
Have you ever watched a football game and wondered what the QB is doing at the line of scrimmage? He says some stuff and looks at things, and then the play happens. Today, I aim to demonstrate, through the liberal use of diagrams, what Mr. Manning will be looking at, and what it means he will/should set the play as. Exciting, huh? (Yes, I just used the word liberal – I wonder if I’ll be accused of making this a political pontification? Probably.)
Having awarded 32 compensatory picks yesterday, the NFL announced the finalized order for the 2012 Draft, which begins with the first round on Thursday, April 26 at 8 pm ET. The second and third rounds will be held the next night starting at 7 pm, while rounds four through seven will begin at noon that Saturday.
Denver currently has seven picks as follows:
|Round||Pick (Overall)||Note||Round||Pick (Overall)||Note|
|1||25 (25)||4||25 (120)|
|2||25 (57)||5||2 (137)||via STL (Brandon Lloyd)|
|3||25 (87)||6||18 (188)||via NYJ (Tebow)|
|4||13 (108)||via NYJ (Tim Tebow)|
Denver's own 5th-rounder went to Cleveland in the Peyton Hillis/Brady Quinn deal, their 6th-rounder to Philly in the J.J. Arrington/Joe Mays trade, and their 7th-rounder went to the Jets in the Tebow swap.
Good Morning, Broncos fans! The NFL's annual league meetings got off to a busy start yesterday:
It appears that our suspicions were right all along--the Broncos sought a cure for Tebowmania sooner than we were told.
According to Tania Gangiuli of the Florida Times-Union, Denver started shopping Tebow during last month's pre-draft Combine:
The Broncos began quietly shopping the quarterback at the NFL scouting combine in February. When the Broncos became the frontrunners to acquire former Colts quarterback Peyton Manning. Tebow’s days in Denver seemed numbered.
The narrative that kept the kids nestled comfortably and sleeping peacefully in their beds all over Broncos Country--namely, that this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get Peyton Manning and that the Broncos were more than comfortable to go into 2012 with Tebow as their starter--was, apparently, a spoonful of sugar fed to Tebowmaniacs to help the medicine go down.
The aftertaste? Bitter.
Jacob Tamme Admits that the Presence of Peyton Manning Helped Draw him to Denver
There’s a lot of things special about Peyton. It’s a long list, but he’s a tremendous leader, he’s a great teammate. He sees things on the field that other people don’t see, and that’s what makes it a lot of fun to play with him. When you’re on the field as a group offensively, everyone’s on the same page and everyone knows — you rep it to the point in practice where you know what he’s thinking and he knows what you’re thinking and I think that guys will have a lot of fun playing that way. So he brings a lot to the table. You could just keep going on and on but he’s one of the best ever.
Peyton Manning throwing in practice session Monday near Denver
Manning practiced Monday at a Denver suburban-area high school in a non-team sanctioned throwing session.
Here they are, the first photos of Peyton Manning working out in Denver Broncos gear. Still surreal, right? According to Lindsay Jones, Manning worked out with J.D. Walton, Eric Decker, and Julius Thomas; Decker told LJ his injured knee is healing well, and he'll be ready for OTAs.
As Decker told LJ,
Just some drill work, talking through stuff, so he gets familiar with the verbage and the calls. The biggest thing is he wanted to get a feel for us, and a feel for being under center. He looked real good, though he probably won't admit that he's feeling good or feeling back to the way he wants to be.
Of course, CBA rules (scroll down) prevent these guys from practicing together at Dove Valley and receiving coaching, so expect this to be a daily occurrence.