Doc's Musings

Scouting the 2014 Broncos: Brandon Marshall’s chance

Sometimes it’s fate, karma, written in the stars, or whatever you prefer. Brandon Markieth Marshall was born on Sept 10, 1989 in Las Vegas, NV.

Vegas, love or hate it, has Lady Luck for its unofficial deity. An injury that’s bad for the Broncos has another side. A player drafted in 2012 by Jacksonville and waived three times now has first shot at a possible starting job on a SB contender. He lived on and off Jacksonville and Denver’s practice squads, which may be a blessing. He's had time to learn.

Denver has a plethora of options in Lamin Barrow, Lerentee McCray, Corey Nelson, and others. Marshall earned his second squad berth behind the injured Danny Trevathan; now he's going to try and hold off all comers to win the starting slot at the Will.

Continue reading "Scouting the 2014 Broncos: Brandon Marshall’s chance"

Scouting the 2014 Broncos: Player development

Every team talks about it - the importance of player development. What’s different at Dove Valley is that they actively push that agenda.

As John Elway often says, “We don't draft All-Pros, we have to make them."

And the Broncos do.

They bring youngsters into players-only film sessions, offer them state of the art training and nutritional monitoring, motivate them, and then see what the player gives in return.

Continue reading "Scouting the 2014 Broncos: Player development"

Mail: Scouting Denver’s offensive line

Tia writes:

Hello, IAOFM staff! First, I just wanted to say thank you for continuing to be the best source there is for Broncos news and analysis. Your recent article on TJ Ward and what he'll be able to do for us this season was particularly great (can't wait to see him in action!), and I was writing to ask if you may be willing to do a similar sort of preview for the O-Line, based on a mix of last year's performances and what you've seen/heard from TC so far?

That seems to be our weak spot at the moment based on early camp reports, though I'm sure they're slower to adjust due to having two guys learning new positions, but I would just love to hear your thoughts on whether or not there's anything to worry about there, and what this newly retooled group's strengths and weaknesses may be this year.

Continue reading "Mail: Scouting Denver’s offensive line"

Opioid use and chronic pain

The July 2014 issue of Consumer Reports includes an investigation into the dangers of painkilling medication - particularly opioid use and abuse.

I’d touched on these issues in Pro Sports: Beyond Cannabis Part 2, but this article takes them to a new level.

Included was this comment:

Continue reading "Opioid use and chronic pain"

Welcome back, Wolfeman

On Day 2 of training camp, Derek Wolfe blew past Ryan Clady and dropped Montee Ball for a three-yard loss. It’s just one play, without pads, but it’s great to see the man getting his old form back.

Andrew Mason noted that it was more Wolfe showing skill than Clady trying to work back to his form. At the same time, DeMarcus Ware was apparently abusing Chris Clark at RT.

Consider this: One DL formation could have Terrance Knighton at nose tackle, Wolfe and Malik Jackson at defensive tackle, with Ware and Von Miller attacking from the edges. It’s just one option, but it’s one that would have to make a lot of quarterbacks nervous.

Continue reading "Welcome back, Wolfeman"

Scouting the 2014 Broncos: Tight Ends

A commenter recently slammed me for having a continuing interest in the tight end position. Properly used, I’d said, it’s a major way to improve your offense. The commenter responded that the position is nearly useless and will be phased out over the next decade.

In return, I noted Sid Gillman’s point that having two good TEs can let a team control the middle of the field. No shots were fired, but no agreement was reached, either.

The New England Patriots recently had two very good tight ends who did a lot of damage to opposing defenses, prompting teams to start looking at the position in earnest. The demand for good tight ends went up like a helium balloon. Rumors of the position’s demise were exaggerated. Having multiple effective tight ends is strongly back in vogue.

Continue reading "Scouting the 2014 Broncos: Tight Ends"

Pro Sports and Cannabis, Part 2

Recently, I wrote about the potential for the usage of cannabidiol (CBD) in professional sports. While I'm trying to keep the jargon to a minimum, there’s a lot more information on CBD that can go a long way to helping understand it.

I’ll also cover some relevant pending legislation and add some fuel to the fire by talking about medical cannabis.

To recap, hemp, from which CBD is extracted, comes from fertilized hemp/cannabis plants. Cannabis, in turn, is created by eliminating all the male plants so that the females produce a sticky resin to attract pollination. That resin contains more of the THC that cannabis users are looking for.

Continue reading "Pro Sports and Cannabis, Part 2"

Pro Sports and Cannabis, Part 1

Cannabis, as it is legalized for many medical conditions, has been changing the treatment of many disorders.

I believe that recent discoveries about the cannabis family will change the face of pro sports as well.

One branch of that family is the recent ability to extract a specific class of substances derived from the hemp plant, the fertilized cousin of marijuana.

That branch isn't smoked. It's ingested orally or used topically, on the skin. It's safe, and it's legal in all 50 states.

Continue reading "Pro Sports and Cannabis, Part 1"

Scouting the Broncos: Offensive line versatility

When someone visiting Dove Valley asks who will play right tackle, they’re going to get a stock answer.

Ryan Clady and Louis Vasquez will start at their traditional slots. Orlando Franklin will will start at left guard. Manny Ramirez leads at center going into training camp. Chris Clark has earned the right to head the right tackle depth chart going into camp, with Winston Justice his first competition.

Beyond those factors, it’s wide open.

Continue reading "Scouting the Broncos: Offensive line versatility"

Scouting the Broncos: Hillman versus Bibbs

The Broncos have added plenty of speed and physicality to their offensive backfield this offseason.

Denver didn’t take a running back in the draft, which was no surprise - they already had Montee Ball penciled in as their starter, and C.J. Anderson to back him up. If he shows maturity and better hands, Ronnie Hillman can certainly be the third back.

But it wouldn’t come as a surprise if Hillman ends up fighting for his job, given his history and the quality of the undrafted backs behind him.

Continue reading "Scouting the Broncos: Hillman versus Bibbs"