Doc's Musings

Tales from the SunnySide: Connor Barwin

If the V-word (versatility) is really going to be Josh McDaniels’ MO, thy name is Connor Barwin. This is a very rare player who really can do it all. How many players in the past five years could you draft respectably as a TE and draft highly as a 4-3 DE, 3-4 OLB, 4-3 SAM or 4-3 DE? Offensively and defensively, Connor Barwin is as close to a complete package as a modern player can be and he’s rocketing up the draft boards after an excellent showing at the Combine.

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Tales from the SunnySide: Ronald Fields

Mike Nolan brought several things with him from San Francisco. He brought the plans for a nascent 3-4 defense, with some hybrid attributes, that is yet to be unveiled. He brought a background in working for the Denver Broncos, an understanding of the traditions of the organization and a knowledge of the town. Oh, yes, and he brought with him the wide-load defensive tackle and nose tackle Ronald Fields.

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Lombardi on Broncos free agency

Disclaimer: I like the Broncos free agency so far better than Mike Lombardi does.
 
When I was writing the article on Andra Davis, I mentioned to TSG that I hadn't heard anyone say a bad thing about him. JohnnyB pointed out that Cleveland has had lousy linebacking in the past two years. I'd mostly been looking at the quality of the man, but TSG pointed out the possible  issues with his job qualifications. It was an example of what happens each year - players get shuffled in new combinations, and the fans hope that the new group will out-play the last.

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Tales from the SunnySide: Andra Davis

Sometimes you just like a pickup. The Broncos signed one this weekend that has a non-stop motor.

 
As I researched our new ILB, Andra (pronounced AHN-dray, just like Bly) Davis, two things stood out. He's not fast. Everyone agreed on that. It's his weakness, which can be mitigated in degree by putting him in the 3-4 defense. The other thing that stood out was that no one had an even slightly negative thing to say about this self-made gentleman. As a player, as a leader, as a servant in the community and as a man, Andra Davis is the kind of acquisition that makes you just want to cheer.

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NFL players visit U.S. troops in the Persian Gulf

Four NFL players are currently visiting US troops in the Persian Gulf. The players are Cardinals receiver Larry Fitzgerald, Vikings defender Jared Allen, Rams linebacker Will Witherspoon and Giants linebacker Danny Clark. They will meet with troops throughout the Persian Gulf region this week, continuing a tradition established by the NFL over 40 years ago. The progaram was developed in 1966 with several players visiting U.S. troops in Vietnam and the Persian Gulf.

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Tales from the SunnySide: Andre’ Goodman

Andre' Goodman has come a long way from Greenville, SC. He was born there on August 11, 1978; Goodman was born a Leo and has the heart of a lion. He brings that fierce quality to his play on the field.

He was an all-state selection in South Carolina and was rated the state's 20th-best prospect and 10th-best receiver after only two years of football. He was a top performer in track and ran a 10.5 in the 100-meter dash. In NFL terms, he ran a 4.36 40 before being drafted. That’s a lot of speed. And we all know that you can’t coach speed.

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Broncos/Chargers reloading report

Broncos versus Chargers: Comparative Offseason Issues

There is an old saying that you are defined by your rivals as much as by your friends. Over the 2008 season, San Diego vs. Denver was a bitterly fought contest that ended up with 1 victory each.
 
In retrospect, the San Diego Chargers aren’t much happier with their 2008 season than Pat Bowlen was with that of the Broncos. San Diego cut DC Ted Cottrell loose during the season, and his replacement Ron Rivera interviewed elsewhere after their elimination from the playoffs.

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The H-Back: Using the magic option

Some posts have recently noted that one option, perhaps our best, would be using Peyton Hillis as an 'H-back'. I did a little digging, asked our resident authorities some questions and came up with a short analysis that I'd like to share.

H-back.  For what it's worth, I'm not sure this is the best role for Hillis this year: at the least, not his only one. We probably are in need of him at RB, but we know that McD does value versatility. If that's the case, there's really no reason to limit Hillis to one role or the other. While his running style might create the potential for some injuries, it does reduce others. It's always better to be the hitter than the hittee, and Hillis likes hitting people when he runs. Since he also catches well and blocks fairly well in certain situations, we can use him in different roles. After all - that's one idea of the function of the H back. But first, let's define our terms.

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2008 season review: Brandon Marshall

In 2008, most people would agree that Brandon Marshall had quite a year.

He started the 2008 regular season off with a multiple-game suspension for several incidents of off-field unbecoming conduct, a suspension which Commissioner Goodell reduced to a single game after an appeal. Earlier in the spring, he gave differing explanations of how he fell through the glass door of an entertainment center, severely injuring his right arm. But Brandon returned from his off-season escapades with a recovering arm and a changed attitude – sort of. As Jay Cutler later put it,

"Brandon will be Brandon."

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Tales from the SunnySide: Cody Brown

The change to a 3-4 alignment has become increasingly popular in the NFL, as have integrating the hybrid formations. There are several reasons: Although their roots are several decades old, like all alignments, they are most recently emerging in response to the increasingly complex offenses and to rule changes that favor the offense.

Like every approach, they have strengths and weaknesses. One of the strengths is the availability of linebackers who are otherwise ‘tweeners' - those who are too big for the more-traditional 4-3 formations, yet who lack the size and strength for the 4-3 DE position, much less the two-gap 3-4. Our colleges turn out many of these players each year, and with the growing 3-4 movement, the best of them can have a solid career in the NFL. And that's where Cody Brown comes in.

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