Tag:Brady Quinn
Posted on: September 5, 2010 11:12 am
 

A dead money debate

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Mark Kizla of the Denver Post analyzes the moves (mistakes) Broncos coach Josh McDaniels has made in the past year.

First, he traded up to draft Alphonso Smith in the first round, meaning the Broncos gave him a $2.15 million signing bonus. Then, Denver gave Jarvis Green $3.25 million guaranteed. Then, the Broncos drafted Tim Tebow after trading for QB Brady Quinn to back up Kyle Orton.

So, where do the Broncos stand after Saturday?

Smith was traded to the Lions. Green was cut. Quinn has looked horrendous this preseason.

And Kizla is not impressed:

We salute McDaniels for not letting his ego get in the way of ushering Smith and Green to the exit.

But McDaniels had better be right on first-round draft picks Knowshon Moreno, Robert Ayers, Demaryius Thomas and Tim Tebow. If the Broncos fail to develop anything less than two Pro Bowl players from that quartet in the coming years, then the 34-year-old McDaniels will be long gone from Denver before his hair turns gray.

All of this raised the ire of the Mile High Report, a Broncos blog, on Twitter.

With Smith, Green and the $600,000 in bonuses paid to Brandon Stokley – placed on the IR list until he’s healthy enough to be cut – that’s about $6 million of dead money for the Broncos this season. But as the blog points out, that’s less than what Seattle will pay for T.J. Houshmandzadeh (cut Saturday and owed $7 million guaranteed) and Cincinnati has paid Antonio Bryant (released and paid $8 million).

The MHR makes a good point, but Kizla’s point is well taken also. McDaniels has made some high-profile moves in his short tenure, and some of those moves have not turned out well. If his decisions continue to haunt him and his squad, he won’t be around for the long-term.

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Posted on: September 3, 2010 11:23 pm
Edited on: September 3, 2010 11:24 pm
 

Will Tebow win the No. 2 job?

Posted by Andy Benoit

Bill Williamson of ESPN.com is speculating that Tim Tebow could be the Broncos top backup quarterback on Opening Day. (By the way, as fate would have it, that Opening Day game will be played in Jacksonville.)

During the preseason, Tebow was the first quarterback off the bench for Denver. Brady Quinn was the third-stringer. However, many assumed that the Josh McDaniels was simply trying to expedite Tebow’s development.

Of course, the whole point of expediting a player’s development is so that said player can get on the field as soon as possible. That in mind, Tebow may have played well enough to capture the No. 2 job.

Tebow was 12/16 for 167 yards and a touchdown in his final preseason contest Thursday. Of course, in that game (which pitted backups against backups). Tebow also threw a duck that was easily picked off. That duck was not the only wildly erroneous throw from the rookie this preseason. The mechanics and accuracy issues that gave some scouts pause about Tebow have surfaced at times.

That said, Quinn has not been particularly impressive. Perhaps Tebow could win the backup job by default.

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Category: NFL
Posted on: August 30, 2010 12:08 am
Edited on: August 30, 2010 12:15 am
 

Burning questions revisited

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

D. Dixon didn't do himself any favors Sunday night (US Presswire). Earlier this evening, we presented three burning questions the Steelers and the Broncos would face when they met at Invesco Field. After Denver finished off a 34-17 win, we have a few more answers (which are in bold).

Steelers

1. What the heck is going on with the starting QB spot? This has been one of my favorite questions all preseason, because much of what the Steelers coaching staff has done hasn’t made sense to me. Like tonight, for example. Byron Leftwich most likely will be the starter once the season begins, but he probably won’t play tonight until the second half when the second-team is going, after Ben Roethlisberger – who, of course, won’t be playing the season-opener – and Dennis Dixon, who should be the starter in place of Roethlisberger, takes their reps. A bonus question: why? I still don’t know the answer, but I’ll tell you this: Dixon lost any chance he had to be a starter by tossing two interceptions and showing his inexperience and poor decision-making.

2. How will C Maurkice Pouncey perform against a first-team defensive line? Earlier this week, Pouncey surpassed Justin Hartwig as the starting center, and tonight, he’ll test his wares against a very good nose tackle in Jamal Williams. He had some good moments against Williams and some bad moments where he allowed the Broncos to penetrate the backfield and get pressure on Dixon. But overall, this is a move that should work out well for Pittsburgh.

3. What’s up with RB Rashard Mendenhall? There have been rumors that Mendenhall suffered a broken arm in practice, but those talks have been debunked by reporters who actually are in the know. He is expected to start tonight. Of course, he played. No surprise there. He was workmanlike with 28 yards on five carries before calling it a night. But the breakout RB belonged to Steelers rookie Jonathan Dwyer, who recorded 89 yards and a score on just 13 carries while looking strong on one play and fast on the next.

Broncos

1. Will the run defense stop anybody? Last year, the Broncos ranked 26th in the NFL by allowing 128.7 rushing yards per game. So, after signing a plethora of defensive linemen in the offseason, where has that gotten the Broncos? Dead last in the preseason stats with 171 rushing yards per game. Tonight, Mendenhall will provide the next test for the Broncos defense to pass. Dwyer was awesome tonight, though it came mostly against second and third-stringers. Still, the Broncos allowed 175 rushing yards on the night. Obviously, that’s not what Denver’s coaches wanted.

2. Can RB Knowshon Moreno play tonight? It doesn’t sound like it. As the Denver Post reports, Moreno doesn’t look anywhere close to returning, as he’s taking his cuts rather gingerly. The Broncos need him to return to the starting lineup, but it most likely won’t be tonight’s starting lineup. No, he didn’t play. Instead, we saw the return of LenDale White, who actually looked pretty good. He had 34 yards and a score on 12 yards, and if he didn’t have to sit out a four-game suspension to open the season, he’d have a better chance of making the squad.

3. Will Tim Tebow return? Of course, we have to ask this question, no matter how dirty it makes us feel. Pregame reports are saying he was throwing during warmups, so it sounds like he might dress. And if he dresses, there’s a decent chance he plays. He played, and he threw a god-awful interception. But he also showed a nice touch and good awareness on his 3-yard TD pass to Eric Decker. Either way, he looked more competent than Brady Quinn.

A few more observations:

-There was plenty of talk about how punter Daniel Sepulveda would take Jeff Reed’s job as the kickoff specialist. Well, Sepulveda booted the game-opening kickoff out of bounds for a penalty. One word: ugh.

-James Farrior did his best Eli Manning impression with that cut on his head.

-There was a scary moment for Broncos fans when Kyle Orton tried to deliver a hit on Steelers LB James Harrison after he picked up and ran with an alleged fumble. We’ll say this: it didn’t end well for Orton, who briefly left the game following his tackle. Like I said on Twitter, you don’t want Orton anywhere near Harrison when the latter is returning a possible fumble.

-The Steelers accumulated four personal foul penalties in the first half. That’s pretty ridiculous. Not the sign of a real disciplined team.

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Posted on: August 24, 2010 11:33 am
 

Hot in Cleveland - well lukewarm, anyway

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Last year at this time, the Browns were staring at a mess. Their quarterback choices were Derek Anderson or Brady Quinn. WR Braylon Edwards would soon be on his way out of town. RB Jamal Lewis was getting old.

New head coach Eric Mangini already was facing problems within the organization. And as Tony Grossi from the Cleveland Plain Dealer writes, “Mike Furrey was one of the surest tacklers in the secondary. Yes, Mike Furrey, the possession receiver.”

Life is different now in Berea, Ohio, though.

Jake Delhomme might only be a slight upgrade – if that – but at least the QB spot isn’t in question, though if the coaches wanted to make things interesting, they could throw in Seneca Wallace every now and again (I’m not sure what the deal is here, but Grossi also mentions third-round pick Colt McCoy needs to play well in the final two preseason games in order to make the roster). Rookies Joe Haden and T.J. Ward have performed well in the secondary during training camp, and RB Jerome Harrison rushed for 561 yards in the final three games of last season.

Of course there are still plenty of questions in Cleveland and there’s almost no chance they won’t finish last in the AFC North, but life just seems a little bit better for the Browns. At least compared to last year.

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Posted on: August 19, 2010 10:12 pm
Edited on: August 19, 2010 10:25 pm
 

Broncos extend Orton; Tebow fans gnash teeth

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

According to various media reports, the Broncos have extended QB Kyle Orton’s contract an extra year through 2011. The extension is for $9 million ($5.5 million of that is guaranteed, according to NFL.com’s Jason La Canfor a, and it speaks to the fact the club likes Orton quite a bit.

That might be because backup Brady Quinn was so bad in the first preseason game against the Bengals – he’s been pretty crappy throughout his career, come to think of it –  and Denver simply doesn’t trust him. It might be because nobody is sure what exactly Tim Tebow will become. Or it might simply be because Orton (62.1 percent completed, 3,802 yards, 21 TDs, 12 INTs last year) impressed the Broncos front office in his first season with the team.

I actually like the move quite a bit. I certainly don’t think Orton is the next John Elway, but he’s solid enough, especially in that division – only San Diego’s Philip Rivers is clearly a better QB.

While we wait to see whether Tebow can play QB in this league, the Broncos have a pretty good one in Orton who coach Josh McDaniels can feel comfortable with every week.

UPDATE (10:23 PM ET):
Kyle Orton's statement as released through the team. "This is the place that my wife and I definitely want to be. Considering the labor environment, I'm aware of how difficult it was to get this deal done and am extremely appreciative of all of the hard work and support from [general manager] Brian Xanders and Coach McDaniels during this process. I'm eager to get this season started and will do whatever I can to help this team be successful."

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Posted on: August 16, 2010 9:31 am
Edited on: August 16, 2010 11:46 am
 

Hot Routes 8.16.10: Media wants Tebow's autograph

Posted by Will Brinson



Got a link we should feature in the Hot Routes? Follow us on Twitter (@CBSSportsNFL) or email will [dot] brinson [at] cbs [dot] com .
  • Unsurprisingly, the comments on my "Tebow was impressive" article were all like "WHAT GAME DID YOU WATCH?!? HE PLAYED AGAINST SECOND- AND THIRD-STRINGERS!" That's true. But you know what? Tebow is so freaking amazing that he's inspiring media members to ask him for autographs -- according to Alex Marvez on Twitter , two members of the press walked up to Tebow after the game and asked for his signature. That's a big no-no (doi), because not only do you immediately shred any sense of objectivity about the person you're covering, but it's a clear-cut case of abusing the access that press members have. Next thing you know, they'll start serving us delicious food at games too! No, but seriously, this is embarrassing; a quick Twitter-poll reveals that most people agree what they did was quite annoying, etc.
  • Of course, all the Tebow love in the world won't change the top spot on the Broncos' depth chart -- Dave Krieger of the Denver Post writes that "it's not close" when it comes to how far ahead Kyle Orton is. That's true, but as a I mentioned last night, it would be somewhat surprising if Tebow didn't hop Brady Quinn for the No. 2 spot in Denver.
  • There were three No. 1 overall quarterbacks involved in the San Francisco - Indy tilt, with David Carr, Peyton Manning and Alex Smith all getting action during the game. That may be a fact that interests only me. (And it only interests me because I have a weird obsession with Carr, aka "Mister Mittens." )
  • Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News has a handy "10 things to watch" list for the Jets preseason opener. You'll never believe it, but a Darrelle Revis-less defense's play is near the top. On a fairly random note, my girlfriend (who does NOT care for football) watched "Hard Knocks" and freaking loved it. Downside: she asked if it was okay to cheer for the Jets in 2010. I begrudgingly said yes.
  • Kent Somers notes that Larry Fitzgerald -- he of the recently sprained MCL -- was prepping to have his best season ever as a pro and wants people to not "write him off." Geez, Larry. That's a lot to ask. From what I hear, he's going undrafted in almost every fantasy league after this injury.
  • Chicago Breaking Sports has video of Jay Cutler stating that the Bears were just "a few blocks away from some big runs." Yeah, and I'm just "a few hundred thousand dollars away from being a millionaire." (10 to be exact.)

Posted on: August 15, 2010 10:48 pm
Edited on: August 15, 2010 11:17 pm
 

Tim Tebow's impressive preseason performance

Posted by Will Brinson

Some folks wore No. 15 Broncos jerseys. Some wore Florida tees. Some did Gator chomps. All of them cheered when Tim Tebow entered the game with just under five minutes remaining in the third quarter of the Broncos - Bengals preseason game Sunday night.

There was good reason to cheer, too: Tebow went 8/13 for 105 yards, 0 interceptions, 0 TDs (passing), and two rushing attempts for 10 yards and a TD.

Not a mind-blowing collection of statistics, but certainly something that's worth talking further about. Why? BECAUSE IT'S TIM TEBOW, DUH. And because we've all been so quick to dismiss the possibility that he could succeed at the NFL level. And because we've all been so quick to dismiss the 2010 Broncos. And because it's Tim Tebow, duh.

On the first series -- a three-and-out -- Tebow nearly went up top to Matt Willis on third and five, but the UCLA product dropped the ball near the sidelines and the Broncos punted.

The second series was similar -- also a three-and-out -- as Tebow took a shot downfield to Willis again on third and four, but his pass was off the mark and nearly intercepted.

Nothing that remarkable, but nothing that disappointing -- Willis absolutely should have caught the first ball which would have padded his stats, but those things happen.

Then, on Tebow's third series, the kid saw a lot of pressure. The Bengals brought extra men on first down (an incomplete pass to Alric Arnett), a standard rush that nearly got to Tebow on second down (a six-yard dumpoff to Bruce Hall), and extra men on third down (a 21-yard strike to Arnett on third-and-four).

Tebow got "sacked" while trying to scramble out to the right on the next play. Of course, it wasn't a huge hit ... particularly in comparison to what happened next: Tebow took a snap out of shotgun and didn't see the Bengals bring a cornerback and a safety on a blitz and he got absolutely ROCKED while tucking the ball/throwing the ball.

As you can guess, a defensive touchdown resulted, though it was eventually overturned on a Josh McDaniels challenge. One aborted fourth down later, the Bengals took back over.

Fortunately for Broncos fans, Tebow got a shot at a last-minute touchdown run. That resulted in a pair of passes (one a 17-yard screen, one a 7-yard dump-off) to Hall. Tebow then hit Marquez Branson for a 7-yarder across the middle before nailing Davis on a 33-yard laser as he rolled out to the right.

Yes, Davis got out of bounds, and yes, all of this happened in less than a minute. The next attempt to Branson in the end zone was incomplete, but only by a little bit -- it was eventually challenged.

Fortunately, the incomplete pass was upheld, because we got to see Tebow's first touchdown as an NFL player come in the form of a run, which, as Pete Prisco said on Twitter, was completely appropriate.

It's a run you'll see for the next few days over-and-over again, because Tebow took a pair of hits at the goal line diving in for the score. And it's a play that kind of epitomizes how he plays the game. (Read: Hate him all you want, but he hustles his ass off and is more than willing to sacrifice his body on the goalline for a preseason touchdown.)

Given the way that Brady Quinn played on Saturday -- 6/16 for 68 yards and an interception; that actually looks nicer in print than Quinn did on the field -- don't be shocked if you see Tebow jumps him on the depth chart.

Not only did Tebow look substantially better on the field anyway, but locking in Quinn as the No. 3 quarterback and having Tebow play the backup would make McDaniels' activation decisions on Sundays significantly easier.

From what I saw in the Broncos game, it's not even much of a choice right now.

But maybe I'm just a simple cock-eyed optimistic (a la Billy Mumphrey) who gets excited at seeing Tebow succeed. After all, he did his damage against the Bengals' third-teamers (while getting rocked by some of the second-teamers) and he did have issues with his mechanics, in terms of being able to get passes off quickly.

If his instinctive action when he's faced with heavy pressure from NFL defenses is to extend his throwing motion, life will be a disaster. But he'll also learn to read pro defenses better as time goes on, giving him more time/less surprises.

Which means the Broncos might have something nice on their hands after all.

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Posted on: August 14, 2010 8:44 pm
 

Jake Delhomme looks quite sharp for Browns early

Posted by Will Brinson

Jake Delhomme's been a running joke for interception funny-makers ever since his playoff meltdown against the Cardinals in 2008. The level of attention his failures received only increased when he joined the Cleveland Browns, an organization not exactly associated with success.

Throw the "Come on, it's the preseason!" flags at me all you want, but he looked really sharp on the Browns' first possession against the Packers Saturday night, going 6/7 for 66 yards as the Browns marched down the field before Jerome Harrison punched the ball in for Cleveland's first touchdown of 2010.

Delhomme's only incompletion was a pass intended for Brian Robiskie -- and it was only incomplete because Nick Collins made a very nice play on it. Otherwise, Delhomme spread the ball around, hitting Evan Moore and Mohamed Massaquoi twice each.

He worked once out of the gun and once out of an empty-back set (on fourth down no less) and generally looked as comfortable as he did during his heyday with the Panthers.

That's not to say that Carolina should immediately regret their decision, but based on (very) early returns, it seems like Cleveland won't regret theirs. At the very least, he's an upgrade over the Derek Anderson - Brady Quinn debacle that was 2009.


 
 
 
 
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