The Daily Lard 10-13-11

Good Morning, Broncos fans! In his latest Walkthrough, Mike Tanier reimagines the Denver QB change and the Peyton Hillis saga in Cleveland, among other dramas. Plus, he diagrams the final play from Sunday's game and says it was all about Knowshon Moreno's excellent pass blocking. But of greater interest to us, Tanier offers his take on the whole Orton/Tebow thing - he believes John Fox should have started Tebow from Week 1 of the preseason, and that he instead went with Orton out of stubbornness and needed Orton to be a resounding success to get away with it.

Meanwhile, Tanier is sticking with his evaluation that Tebow will not make for a good pro quarterback, and he writes that none of Tim's passes Sunday were on time, and that all followed some confused backpedaling. But he does point out that designed runs were quite effective with Tebow and leaves open the possibility that the young QB's "running and his intangibles make him a viable quarterback." Tanier also stresses that Mike McCoy must tailor the Denver offense to highlight Tebow's strengths rather than try to foist the offense as operated by Orton upon Tim. Ultimately, Tanier just wants to be able to write about either the Broncos' future with Tebow or which QB they'll be taking come April - and a long look at Tim starting next week is the only way to get there. Sounds good to me.


Jeff Legwold doesn't foresee Denver trading or releasing Orton.

Andrew Mason details the return of Eddie Royal to practice yesterday, plus notes from Legwold.

Mike Klis examines the state of the Denver roster at the bye, while Legwold doesn't see the bye as being very helpful or timely for the Broncos.

In his latest mailbag, Woody tries to talk down some fans who are all pissed off because some commentators don't think Tebow will be a good NFL QB. The indignation is a riot, since these same types were all too ready to discuss how terrible Kyle Orton was, everyday. But now that the criticism has turned to their boy, look out! These analyst types are just sleazy meanies!

Plus, Woody's hilariously worried that John Elway wasn't right about Drew Brees while his late father Jack, who spent his life coaching and scouting, was correct about him. Give John a break, so what he's not his dad. Did you know that Woody was right about Steve Young some 25 years ago? This makes Woody a better QB scout than is John - he was right about Young, while Elway was wrong about Brees.

Woody also says it's ridiculous to cite the voiced opinions of players in QB controversies, because they will obviously stick up for whomever is starting, and he reminds us they only really care about themselves, anyway.  I've got to agree with that. Hanging on the sound bites of GMs, coaches and players for any reason other than making fun of them is well, an exercise in futility.

Andrew Brandt goes over the financial implications of the QB change and speculates that Orton could be dealt away.

Rod Smith responds to fan questions for the DP.

You know what's a good indication that your statistical metric isn't taking the sports world by storm? When you have to have your writers post multiple columns (another one here, plus this one from yesterday's Lard) explaining why it's not wrong, that's what. Really, all ESPN has to do is say "It's a small sample, y u mad?" I've alluded to this in the past, but I think we have a decent way of measuring Tebow's effectiveness in both passing and running, but two quarters of play is not the time to start whipping that out. And of course, we'll share the formulas with you like everyone except The Worldwide Leader would do. But what do you expect from the company that may have brought down the best basketball conference in the country?

Chris Hall reports on the QB change for Broncos TV, plus video of John Fox, Dennis Allen and Mike McCoy speaking after practice yesterday. Notes and photos from practice via Kenny Legan, Max Henson on the return to practice of Eddie Royal and on John Elway's comments regarding the QB switch.

As one may have expected, Colin Cowherd doesn't think this Tebow thing is going to work out very well for the Broncos.


Oakland acquired 2009 fourth-overall pick Aaron Curry from the Seahawks in exchange for a 2012 seventh-rounder and a conditional mid-round pick in 2013. Doug Farrar says Curry has utterly devoid of instincts for the LB position.

Browns DE Marcus Benard is done for the year after his motorcycle accident, while Niners WR Josh Morgan was also placed on IR.

Ravens C Matt Birk has been fined $5K for refusing to wear a microphone against the Jets, and he plans to appeal.

Former Bears WR Tom Waddle says that his old team's new safety Brandon Meriweather is a dirty player, and it's hard to dispute that notion.

Pat Kirwan believes teams need to run more out of the shotgun, while Mike Lombardi says they shouldn't go for two before the fourth quarter.

Andy Benoit would like to see more nuance in how interceptions are tallied.

As he had alluded to earlier in the week, Brian Burke thinks the biggest reason for this year's elevated passing numbers is an increased reliance upon screen plays.

Meanwhile, Jack Moore uses some graphs from Packers/Falcons to illustrate just how QB-driven today's NFL game is.

Leigh Steinberg reminds us that spending more doesn't always result in winning, and Jack Bechta considers the balance between the long-term goals of a GM and the short-term ones of a HC.

A slew of weekly goodies from PFF: 32 observations from Nate Jahnke, best (including Elvis Dumervil) and worst players of the week, the ROY race (still led by Von Miller), and a review of key matchups and analysis of some notable plays from Week 5.


Bucky Brooks is mighty impressed with the job Mike Zimmer is doing with the Bengals' D.

As Patrick Imig of CHFF points out, plenty of ex-player TV commentators have been taking shots at their former teams and teammates, probably overcompensating to show their objectivity.

Mike Freeman sees a big problem there, especially when questioning players' injuries. Plus, video of the Jets apparently recording the Patriots' sideline last week.

Gil Brandt seems to have lost it, with among his pre-deadline trade ideas the Broncos sending Brandon Lloyd and a draft pick (acquired for Kyle Orton from Miami) out of town to get Jimmy Clausen.

John Clayton and Adam Schefter respond to email questions, plus Mike Silver's weekly rankings and a shot at Total QBR.

Greg Gabriel reviews the play of rookies Blaine Gabbert, A.J. Green and Andy Dalton, while Wes Bunting goes over his top senior prospects.

Via Chris Brown, Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson has a pretty straightforward way of preparing a game plan. Plus, some hand drawn notes of West Virginia's offense.

Hank Williams, Jr. took about two minutes (hopefully, for his sake) to write and record a song expressing his displeasure with ESPN for dumping him and Fox & Friends for allowing him to say something really stupid on their show.

Doug is IAOFM’s resident newsman and spelling czar. Follow him on Twitter @IAOFM

The Lard