Prime Cuts

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Broncos give Paul Cornick the nod over Chris Clark at right tackle

Broncos to start Paul Cornick at right tackle vs. 49ers

After Clark started the Broncos’ first five games at right tackle, the Broncos are giving Paul Cornick the job today, according to three NFL sources. It won’t be the easiest of starting debuts for Cornick as he will be matched up against San Francisco 49ers’ defensive end Justin Smith in the game tonight at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.

The 6-foot-6, 310-pound Cornick is an undrafted free agent from North Dakota State who spent his first two NFL seasons on the practice squads of the New York Jets (2012) and Broncos (2012-13). He played in 21 offensive snaps last week in the team’s three offensive tackle package (Cornick was officially a tight end) and impressed the Broncos’ coaching staff.

During our in-game chat last week, I told Doug that Chris Clark was not the answer at right tackle. While it seemed a little dramatic at the time, I'd simply been noticing Clark's struggles in the running game each and every week.

This doesn't mean Cornick is the answer, by any stretch, but an extra twenty pounds anchoring the right side of the line certainly won't hurt.

Ranking Peyton Manning’s touchdown receivers

Peyton’s Boys: Ranking Every Player Who’s Caught a Touchdown Pass From Peyton Manning

Julius is the red zone monster that anyone would expect, but it’s Demaryius who stands out as the type of receiver Manning might build in a lab. Demaryius doesn’t have the hands or the jump-ball skills that someone like A.J. Green does, but the game he had against the Cardinals two weeks ago is proof of how he and Manning can be an absolute nightmare.

This is a fun exercise, especially if you've been following the NFL as long as Peyton's been in it. What stands out is how few of Peyton's touchdown passes went to familiar names like Edgerrin James (11) and Jacob Tamme (9), and the pure insanity of Manning's production with the Thomases.

Stokley: LOLJets were more disciplined than Broncos

Brandon Stokley Thinks The Broncos Lack The ‘Killer Instinct’

Stokley doesn’t think it was bad officiating — he blamed it on the players…The Jets were whistled for only two penalties the whole game and Stokley said they played much more disciplined than the Broncos.

Each week, this team shoots itself in the foot with either penalties or turnovers: Week 1 (7 penalties, 0 turnovers); Week 2 (11, 0); Week 3 (4, 2); Week 5 (7, 2); Week 6 (11, 0).

Unless they clean it up, this is going to catch up to them in a big way one of these weeks, with San Francisco, San Diego, and New England looming on the schedule.

Monson: Chris Harris is playing at a new level, repaired ACL and all

Analysis Notebook: Week 6

Harris has played outside and in the slot in the past, but this season he has been primarily a perimeter corner with Bradley Roby covering the inside. Despite being less than a year removed from major knee surgery Harris is outperforming all of the big-name cornerbacks, and might be playing as well as anybody at the position.

It's going to be really tough for the Broncos to re-sign all of Harris, the Thomases, and Terrance Knighton next offseason. Any of those players could end up with an offer elsewhere that Denver's unwilling to match.

But can they afford to let Harris walk? It says here that they cannot, and will not.

Benoit: Coaches would rather face Peyton Manning than Colin Kaepernick

Who Would You Rather Face? A game-planning paradox: Peyton Manning’s an all-time great, sure, but the dangerous and unpredictable Colin Kaepernick is harder to prepare for

None of those coaches were saying Kaepernick is a better quarterback than Manning, they were just saying he’s more stressful to face. Manning might be able to cut a defense with greater depth and regularity than Kaepernick, but at least the defense knows in what ways he can cut them. With Kaepernick, there’s a terrifying unpredictability.

Also from Benoit: "The Broncos are nearly impossible to play man coverage against. They’re too good with intertwined crossing routes and “switch release” concepts. Look for more and more defenses to play zone against them, at least on the inside."

Barnwell: Broncos’ height will challenge Chargers secondary like Raiders’ did

Week 6 Wrap-up: Heavy Is the Head

The problem on the horizon, of course, is that they still have to play the 4-1 Denver Broncos twice. They did beat the Broncos last year, but the tall Broncos receivers should be able to overwhelm San Diego’s smaller defensive backs in much the same way the Raiders did.

Indeed, the only other receiver who's really given San Diego a good deal of trouble this season was Arizona's Michael Floyd, who stands 6-3 and totaled five catches for 119 yards against them in Week 1.

Tanier: Jets’ problems go beyond time zone adjustments

NFL Week 6 Picks: Seahawks Triplets, Bengals Psychology, Terrible Kickers

Incomplete Passes in the Flat: Geno fails to account for the curvature of the earth when throwing toward the sideline.
Terrible Pass Defense: The Jets did not account for the San Andreas fault when assigning coverage techniques. Antonio Gates and Malcom Floyd hit those plate tectonics just right and continentally drifted open.

More problems: Jets fans spend more time booing and heckling their own players than anything else, and crank up the noise when their offense goes for it on fourth down.

Silver: Peyton Manning wanted to run red-zone package for Colts in 2011

Jim Irsay revisits pivotal Peyton Manning-Andrew Luck decision

Some of the issues were provoked by Manning himself, who, according to sources familiar with the situation, persuaded some team officials to allow him to conduct unsanctioned workouts late in the season in an effort to push his way back onto the field. Before the Colts’ Week 16 game against the Texans, Manning, despite a severely weakened throwing arm, pushed to return to the field—but only in red-zone situations.

Given the many stories of just how weak his arm was, a Peyton package may have been a disaster. From there, one can imagine many scenarios preventing Manning from coming to Denver.

Thankfully, Jim Irsay did right by nixing Peyton's idea.

For the love of Elway, no

Champ Bailey visited Ravens, not immediately signed to contract, sources say

In a search for depth at cornerback, sources said the Ravens brought in former Denver Broncos cornerback Champ Bailey for a visit Tuesday at team headquarters in Owings Mills.
However, Bailey wasn’t immediately signed to a contract as the Ravens have opted to re-sign cornerback Dominique Franks.

Now, that would be one particularly f@#$ed up move, if Champ were to end up there.

This is a strange time to recap Josh McDaniels’ Denver missteps

Chronicling Josh McDaniels’s Expanding Wake of Self-Destruction

In two short years, he managed to infuriate Pro Bowlers, scrubs, opposing head coaches, his own defensive coordinator, and seemingly everyone in between, until he was fired during the 2010 season for creating a toxic workplace and an even worse football team.

Does anyone in Broncos Land really wish the team still had Jay Cutler, Brandon Marshall, Peyton Hillis, or Tony Scheffler?