Training camp is a time to iron out the kinks. You get the timing down on offense, you work on substitution patterns to make sure everything goes smoothly -- and you figure out how to adapt to the inevitable random snafu, like the coach-to-quarterback radio transmission system going on the fritz.
That's what Peyton Manning dealt with during the game-condition period of Saturday's practice at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. As the first-team offense faced third-and-7 at the defense's 9-yard-line, the communication system went down.
No problem. The Broncos' backup plan is simple: Let Manning make the call.
"Instead of burning a timeout, coach McCoy (Mike McCoy, Broncos offensive coordinator) told me, 'If the phones go down, just call something that you like,'" Manning said.
He made the right call, opting for a fade to Eric Decker, who caught Manning's pass near the left pylon in spite of blanket coverage by CB Drayton Florence. It was the only touchdown of the 38 plays the Broncos ran during their full-contact work.
"It was excellent coverage by Florence, but Decker did a good job holding his eyes until the last minute," Manning said. "The back shoulder fade is a hard route to cover, and that's something he and I have been working on, so it was good to get that into play today."
Manning went 4 of 8 for 41 yards, a TD and an INT on Saturday, which came against the Broncos' second-team defense.