Week 15 Open Thread

Enjoy the games, and Go Broncos!!!

UPDATE 3:24PM ET Kyle Orton is the 3rd QB today, while Matt Prater, Brian Dawkins, Laurence Maroney, Cassius Vaughn, Eric Olsen, Demaryius Thomas and David Veikune are all inactive for the Broncos.

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The Jesus, The Generator and the Experts - Week 15

Tim Tebow is starting.

Quintana just put on his #15 Jersey.

Let's roll.

You know the drill.  Peter King, a random number generator, and Tim Tebow all are stranded on a desert island.  These picks and Tebow are the only survivors.

Let's see how everyone did this week:

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Tebow to Start Lard 12-19-10

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Adam Schefter and Mike Lombardi are reporting that Tim Tebow will start at QB today, while the local reporters are butt hurt still trying to say that he "may" start because they've been scooped. Obviously, this is an exciting day for Denver - we get to see what all the hoopla's been about, and interestingly, we'll start to find out what Josh McDaniels was thinking when he moved back into the first round to draft Tebow in April. If Tebow ends up a success in Denver, what will McDaniels' legacy be? Will he still be the guy who wanted fewer ran off interceptions Cutler, dropped passes Marshall and fumbles Hillis? Or will the next coach get all the credit for turning around the Broncos and developing Tebow? Who knows? Only one way to find out...

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Thoughts on the eve of Tim Tebow

In every good hero's journey, the chosen one must eventually leave his mentor behind in order to face his quest alone.

And that sucks.  No one wants to leave the comfort and safety of their Jedi Academy.

It helps, though, when your mentor wears a hoodie.  Ask Luke Skywalker. 

If the reports are true, Kyle Orton is questionable for tomorrow's game against the Raiders.  Statistically, players who are listed as "questionable" end up playing about 50% of the time.  Thus, I'd say it's probably no better than a coin flip we'll see Tim Tebow. 

That's good enough for me.  Let the hero with a thousand faces step into the Black Hole--where only the most butch of drag queens fear to tread--and take on the Sith Lord himself, Al Davis.

Tebow's first start against the Raiders?  Are you kidding me?

It had to be destiny.  Only a guy who can casually take a Friar Tuck haircut is worthy of standing in the Oakland Coliseum with a predominantly orange light saber and severing the head of the Raiders' season.

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Looking like Tebow time Lard 12-18-10

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Well, the Broncos haven't come out and said it yet, but it sure seems like Tim Tebow is about to get his first start. Kyle Orton's rib injury has been perfect cover for Tebow to get a full week of first-team reps under the guise that Orton would make it back in time to play. Personally, I think this was the way to go, rather than throwing the kid to the wolves in the middle of a game after having spent the week with the scout team and getting minimal reps working within Denver's playbook. Of course, we likely won't find out until later today or perhaps even tomorrow whether Tebow or Orton is starting. But Denver has managed to avoid the potential avalanche of attention that would have come with announcing it earlier in the week.

As for injuries, the Broncos have listed Brian Dawkins, Demaryius Thomas and Matt Prater as out. Yes, that means another week of Steven Hauschka. David Bruton, Darcel McBath and Orton are questionable, while five players are listed as probable.

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The Broncography of Lee Robinson

The Broncos promoted LB Lee Robinson from the practice squad last week, and I'm thrilled to see him. Why the fervor for a PS player? Robinson was originally signed by Denver as a college free agent following the 2009 Draft, and I thought he was well worth an enduring look at the time. Robinson was an outside linebacker in college who, like so many Broncos linebackers, has also spent some time with his hand on the ground at DE.  However, Robinson is also a player whose maturity and dedication have given the Broncos a new level of competition for any and all of their linebacker slots. Inside linebacker is as good a place to begin as any.

To start, he’s a solid 6’2” and 256 lbs of linebacker. The Broncos once moved to smaller, lighter linebackers, but it’s fair to say that Josh McDaniels preferred something contrastive. He said that he wanted big, physical players who are versatile and can work in multiple situations, which is a choate description of Robinson. One way to consider Robinson is as a bigger version of Wesley Woodyard. In 2008, Woodard took the Broncos by storm. Robinson might be the player at ILB that Denver right now is lacking, freeing up Mario Haggan to stay with his move back to OLB. He can also move into OLB situationally.

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More chicken, more egg Lard 12-17-10

Happy Friday, Broncos fans! Picking up where yesterday's thoughts left off, there's been a lot of worry among the fanbase  that the next head coach will be from an offensive-minded background like Mike Shanahan and Josh McDaniels were, and that the defense will thus be disregarded going forward. Sure, it is a legitimate concern that the next coach and GM pay proper attention to rebuilding the defense, as it was atrocious in 2008 and hasn't fared much better this year. But that doesn't mean the head coach has to have cut his own teeth on defense - he merely has to value that side of the ball and employ a worthy defensive coordinator (and let said DC do his job, of course). In the most meaningless informal of exercises,  I looked at the top half of the league (16 of 32 teams) in terms of points and yards allowed, and it's a mishmosh - in terms of points, seven HCs came from the offensive side, while nine came from the defensive side. Relative to yards allowed, it was eight from Column A, eight from Column B.

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WWTBD? (Part 1)

I’m nowhere near Jesus-like.  I mean, hell, if you’re talking about the Christian portrayal of the historical figure Jesus Christ, I can’t even grow a full beard, and I’m already the same age that that Jesus is reported to have died at.  If you’re talking about The Jesus, I’ve never had to register as a sex offender and go door-to-door, and I’m not too good at bowling.  (My strategy: Use the heaviest ball they have, and throw it straight as hard as I can.)  TJ “The Dude” Johnson’s cat, Jesus Quintana?  I’m not like him either.  For one thing, I’m badly allergic to cats, and for another, I decline to predict the outcomes of football games, or other complex future events.  I don’t even really like fish.  You get it.  I’m nothing like Jesus.

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The Dude’s Mail Revue: Waterboarding with goth girls

Dude's Mail Revue 400x145

Fat Man blogger TJ “The Dude” Johnson posts The Dude’s Mail Revue on Thursdays, in which he takes your questions and gets your opinion about the state of the Denver Broncos.

You wanna roll your way into the semis?

Drop TJ a question: tjthedudejohnson@gmail.com.

(NOTE: No marmots were harmed in the writing of this revue)

TJ, let me be quick to the point.  After John Elway comes on board, the Broncos are going to give Xanders full GM powers and hire Jim Fassel as coach.  Think about it, Dude.  Who was the coach that tutored Elway and Phil Simms?  Fassel.   Who resurrected Kerry Collins' career?  Fassel.   The early 1990s were off the hook for Elway under Fassel.  I really think Bowlen and Elway are going turn back the clock.  You hear that little bitty ting?  That's the sound of a lightbulb going off over Elway's head right now.

In case you didn't know it, Fassel is also the one guy who won't be scared away by the theory that Tim Tebow can't play quarterback, either.   Remember you heard it here first, straight out of Palm Beach!

--Robert Van Winkle, Palm Beach, Florida 

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Dave Nelson, Tubby Raymond and the rise of the Wing T Offense

In a recent interview, Wink Martindale commented that the Broncos are seeing a lot of Wing T running plays this year - he indicated that many of Denver's 2010 opponents (which tend to a heavy percentage of running plays) use it at least part of the time. The Wing T also is a very viable, deception-based passing offense too, but right now the rushing aspect seems to predominate when it’s used in the NFL. With that being the case, and with NFL games available on NFL Rewind and more and more fans enjoying watching film and learning from it, I wanted to give you an overview of the system. It was originally developed, as so many are, out of sheer necessity - you could even say desperation - by Coach Dave Nelson along with Harold Westerman and Mike Lude. Over time, however, most authorities would tell you that it was Coach ‘Tubby’ Raymond who brought it into its modern form. Let’s take it from the very beginning, then on to small Hillsdale College, onward to the University of Maine, the University of Delaware, and the Hall of Fame careers of Dave Nelson and Tubby Raymond.

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