Fat Camp: Understanding the Manning offense - Part 4

Happy Tuesday, friends, and welcome to Part 4 of the ongoing series about the Peyton Manning offense.  Today we’ll take our first step into the passing game, beginning with the key concepts that make up the three-step game.  If you’ve missed any of the prior installments of the series, please feel free to catch up by following the appropriate links:

Part 1 – Basics – Formations, Personnel Groupings, and Fit of Existing Personnel

Part 2 – Presnap Recognition Concepts

Part 3 – The Running Game

Every team runs some key three-step passing plays, which accomplish the goal of getting the ball in the hands of players in space by way of high-percentage completions.  With an excellent QB like Peyton Manning, the three-step game is especially effective, because he’s so quick at identifying the best receiver to throw the ball to and then put it on the guy’s upfield shoulder, which allows him to immediately begin running after securing the catch.

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New Broncos jersey unveiled

Nike unveiled the new NFL jerseys for the 2012 season at an event in Brooklyn today. As expected, the Broncos will be switching back to orange as their primary uniform color, and the necklines of their jerseys also received a minor tweak (as did several other teams, it appears). Seattle was the only team whose uniforms underwent a significant overhaul.

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The Daily Lard 4-3-12

Good Morning, Broncos fans! In his latest column over at CHFF, Scott Kacsmar does his usual bang-up research job in examining the wide-ranging impact of Tim Tebow on the 2011 NFL season and the rest of the league going forward.

As Kacsmar tells it, Tebow's influence resulted in:

  • The Packers losing their bids at perfection and a SB repeat
  • Pittsburgh having to play in the only location where safety Ryan Clark would be unavailable
  • Denver doing the unthinkable in both pursuing and acquiring Peyton Manning, which of course set off a whole set of QB dominoes

Okay, so perhaps some of it is a reach, but it's a typically informative and entertaining read from Kacsmar, who even manages to tie the bounty scandal into the story.

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Monday Musings - Manning, MJ & McCoy

After TJ cited Peyton Manning’s radio appearance on 104.3 last week, I spent some time thinking about what Manning had said. There’s no other way for me to put it - I feel like you've got to love Peyton’s approach in all of this. This is what other, lesser QBs should have brought to the table over the years - the unshakable desire to win, and a willing acceptance of their role in making it happen.

He's spoken of as one of the best of the best among QBs - and he is. He’ll be a first-ballot Hall of Famer, yet he’s essentially a soft-spoken man and he has a remarkable natural kindness to his mannerisms. He gives me the feeling that he’s someone who grew up in a good home and who has, himself, an unusual level of maturity. I’ve been privileged to have friends who have adult children like this, and the apples didn’t fall far from the tree. Simply put, the man has something that’s in unsettlingly short supply in our country of late - good manners. He's also both humble and incredibly hard working, yet he has the big ring to prove just how talented he is. He's a living antonym of the star player syndrome that is, at times, too easily present in the league and too often praised and cheered on in the community.

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The Daily Lard 4-2-12

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Peter King thinks he thinks that he thinks it's interesting the Eagles and Chiefs are running A&M QB Ryan Tannehill through private workouts this week, but he believes the Dolphins (whose OC Mike Sherman was the QB's college head coach) and Browns are the likely landing spots for the prospect. Other MMQB factoidy thoughts:

  • Dolphins owner Stephen Ross now claims he didn't offer Jim Harbaugh the Miami gig, and that he didn't really want Peyton Manning. Guess Ross is learning from his counterpart in New Jersey...
  • PK finally got around to linking the Elway and Luck families, and he says Chris Mortensen had so many Manning scoops because of his close relationship with the QB, not because they share representation.
  • King wonders if Greg Schiano could someday be Bill Belichick's successor in New England, or has he forgotten about McHoodie? BTW, does Geraldo Rivera think Belichick and McDaniels are putting themselves in physical danger by wearing their thuggish apparel at practice and on the sideline during games? Hmm. Geraldo should have been an NFL reporter - he would have sniffed out Spygate and McDaniels's iffy personnel moves before anyone else, given their suspicious attire.
  • PK laudibly calls out the NFL for making an example of the Saints while their cash cow TV network glorifies vicious hits from days gone by, and he's hearing that Gregg Williams won't be appealing his suspension.

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The Daily Lard 4-1-12

Good Morning, Broncos fans! We learned last summer that former Denver lineman and Pro Bowler Larry Kaminski plans to donate his brain to the Boston University group studying CTE and its occurence in football players. Kaminski now lives out in Washington, and spoke with his local paper about the physical toll of the game as he's experienced it:

At the end of the game ... I couldn't even bite down. It felt like somebody stuck a pencil in there or a knife or something because your jaw was so (out of) whack from getting hit so much.

I would wake up the next day and it was like I just left the battlefield and everybody had their heads off and I was carrying a sword with blood on it, and I said, 'What happened?' It was like I got into this darkness.

It looks to me like we were the prototype model to go out and find out how badly you can get beat up and then changed the design of the model or how it's used.

The league is trying to abandon a lot of us old-timers because they know there's a big liability.

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Fat Camp: Understanding the Manning offense - Part 3

Hello, friends, and welcome to Part 3 of our series about the Manning offense that we can expect to see in Denver.  Today, we’ll focus on the running game, which I think will schematically have a lot of similarity to the base running game we’ve seen in Denver the past three seasons.  The philosophy will be very different, though, and it’s on that aspect which I will dedicate most of my focus.

If you missed Parts 1 or 2, and want to catch up, please see these links:

Part 1 – Basics – Formations, Personnel Groupings, and Fit of Existing Personnel

Part 2 – Presnap Recognition Concepts

Let’s begin by asking a simple question – why do football teams run the ball?  The main answer that I would give is that it’s tradition.  American football was invented in 1869, and the forward pass wasn’t introduced to the game until 1906.  It actually was introduced as a safety measure, because a bunch of people got killed or seriously hurt playing the game in 1905, and President Teddy Roosevelt demanded rules changes.  (The horror of government overreach!)  The rules committee that was formed was the precursor of today’s NCAA.

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Broncos have plenty of cap room Lard 3-31-12

Good Afternoon, Broncos fans! There's been a lot of mystery surround Denver's cap space this offseason, with wide assumptions that the team was running low on cap space after having added Peyton Manning, Joel Dreessen, Jacob Tamme, Andre Caldwell, Tracy Porter, Mike Adams, and Caleb Hanie, plus having re-signed Wesley Woodyard, Joe Mays, Jason Hunter, and Manny Ramirez.

But thanks to the team's whopping $26M cap carryover from 2011 - second only to Jacksonville's $31M - Denver still has a very comfortable $13.8M in current available cap room. Only nine teams - Cincinnati, Cleveland, Jacksonville, KC, Minnesota, Philly, Seattle, Tampa Bay, and Tennessee - have more space left.

There will be draft picks to sign, the team reportedly still has interest in bringing back Marcus Thomas, and there remain some viable free agency options - including tackles Derek Landri and Amobi Okoye. So while there's no way for us to know whether the team plans to make any more splashes in free agency, it's great to know they have the flexibility to do so.

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Marcus Thomas’ twitter feed indicates he wants to sign with Broncos like yesterday

Check out Marcus Thomas' twitter feed lately?  

If not, you should consider it.  

Not only is Thomas openly tweeting about his desire to re-sign with the Broncos, he's re-tweeting fan tweets about him re-signing with Denver. 

So far, nothing has been inked, but (it appears) not for a lack of desire from Thomas.

Here are a few of his recent re-tweets:

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The Daily Lard 3-30-12

Happy Friday, Broncos fans! Jeff Legwold spoke with Jeff Fisher, Leslie Frazier and Mike Shanahan about the problems Peyton Manning creates for defenses. The best quotes come via Fisher, whose Titans played Manning twice yearly for nine years, plus once in the 1999 playoffs (a Tennessee victory that included a !15-yard! rushing TD by Peyton). Said Fisher:

He'll raise the offense to a level where they are consistent week after week after week. He eliminates a lot of mistakes, and they'll score a lot of points week after week after week. He kind of changes the defensive philosophy (the Broncos) will face because all of a sudden (defenses) aren't rushing the passer against Denver or protecting a lead.

We've always said it's like preparing for one of those quarterbacks in a video game. You just can't fool him. He'll move fast and get the ball to the right people.

He's going to get up under center, scan the field and he knows what you're doing," Fisher said. "It may look like you're doing something else, but he knows what you're doing. It goes beyond staring into the eyes of the safeties. He understands presnap looks, the signals, the communication. He just knows all that.

Sound good to you?

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