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Old 07-12-2009, 07:26 PM   #1
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Default Final Broncos Minicamp Wrap-up...

One last bit of football reading. This is old, but a decent write-up to skim.
It's a football wasteland out there. Take what you can get...

http://blogs.denverpost.com/broncos/


Minicamp wrap up: Winners and losers (and of course, more Marshall talk)
by Lindsay Jones on June 15, 2009 30 Comments

Well, it’s been a heck of an offseason, wouldn’t you say? And Brandon Marshall seems to be doing his best to make sure the Broncos stay in the news in upcoming days and weeks, when the rest of the NFL world starts to shut down for a much-needed vacation.

I’ll touch a bit on the Marshall situation below … but first, to borrow a line from Josh McDaniels, let’s talk about the players that were actually at Dove Valley for the team’s mandatory minicamp.

WINNERS

- WRs Jabar Gaffney, Eddie Royal, Brandon Stokely and Chad Jackson: So maybe none of these guys presents quite the intimidating physical presence that No. 15 does, but these four receivers got plenty of reps with the first-team offense through the weekend. Gaffney at this point appears to be the most versatile and comfortable in the offense, no surprise since he followed McDaniels here from New England. Eddie Royal frequently looked like the very best skill position player on the field — fantasy alert! he’s going to make A LOT of catches this year — and Stokely is his same old reliable self Broncos fans are used to. Chad Jackson might have found himself in the best position through all this offseason turmoil. A guy who signed late last season and played little for Mike Shanahan, he’s getting a lot of work now and is familiar with the offense from his time in New England. I don’t expect him to be a starter, but he could find himself a role here, especially if Marshall protests his way out of town.

- QB Kyle Orton: He’s The Man heading into training camp. This is good for him from a leadership perspective and it will help him continue to build rapport with his receivers. He wasn’t always sharp in minicamp, but it surely is a confidence boost for Orton to know his coach has enough faith in him to anoint him as the No. 1 right now.

- TE Tony Scheffler: Kudos to Scheffler for making it through an entire offseason program healthy. After spending the last two Mays and Junes in the training room or on the sidelines, it was nice to see Scheffler working at full speed. He is playing behind Daniel Graham, but did get first-team reps in 2 tight end sets.

- OLB/DE Robert Ayers: Yes, Knowshon Moreno was impressive and I expect Moreno to make a major impact this season. But Ayers got more work with the first team of any rookie. He also showed tremendous work ethic by staying late after every practice to practicing catching balls from the Jugs machine. He was on the field for a solid 15 minutes, at least, longer than all of his defensive teammates each day.

- ILB D.J. Williams: Williams is still wearing the orange “no contact” jersey as he continues to recover from offseason shoulder surgery, but it didn’t look like Williams was limited at all. In fact, he appeared to get more work than just about any defensive player because of his starting spot in the base, nickel and dime packages. He is even on the first-team field goal block unit.

- RB Ryan Torain: He didn’t take any reps, but the fact that he was on the field practicing at all makes Torain a winner for sure. He showed good mobility and the grace we all remember from last summer as he worked through individual drills.

- OLB/DE Tim Crowder: The 2007 second-round pick was basically Mr. Irrelevant last season, but he was in with the first-team base defense at outside linebacker all weekend. He came out on passing downs, though he was on the second-team nickel unit. I talked to Crowder on Friday, and he said that all he can ask for is a chance to compete, and clearly he’s been given a clean slate by the new coaching regime.

- OL Seth Olsen: The rookie draft pick took all of the first-team reps at right guard while starter Chris Kuper was excused to attend his own wedding. There is very little chance Kuper’s absence hurts his standing — all the praise for the Ryans aside, I’ve heard talk that Kuper was the line’s MVP last season — but any time a young guy like Olsen can get that much early work with the starters, it is a good thing.

LOSERS (and we mean this in the nicest way possible)

- WR Brandon Marshall: You can’t win if you don’t (or won’t) play.

- P Brett Kern: Rookie Britton Colquitt looks like he’ll be more than just a camp leg. Kern, who had a solid rookie year in 2008, could find himself in another heated battle throughout training camp.

- DE/OLB Elvis Dumervil and Darrell Reid: I was hesitant to list these guys here, but the fact is, they were both relegated to the second-team through much of the weekend. Dumervil, did, however take a number of first-team reps on Sunday, swapping in and out with Ayers. This position battle is far from over and is shaping up to be possibly the most interesting competition of training camp.

- QB Chris Simms: Now officially the No. 2, which makes him the “loser” in the QB competition. But he handled the news well, praised Orton as a teammate and player and said he will continue to work hard, which makes him a “winner” in my book.

And now, onto Brandon Marshall, who just keeps finding ways to keep himself in the news and on the airwaves.

Here’s what we know: He wants a new, big-money contract that would pay him on par with what similarly productive receivers in the league make. He wants to rehab with his own doctors and trainers in Florida instead of at Dove Valley. And he seems to be OK with forking over thousands of dollars to do so.

My partner Mike Klis reported in today’s edition that the Broncos do not want to trade Marshall and that McDaniels has been in touch with Marshall’s agent. The fact that Marshall did show up for a face-to-face meeting with Pat Bowlen, and that communication remains open between him, his reps and the team is a good sign. We’ve all seen what can happen when there’s no communication …

That said … I don’t see this as a situation where either side is ready to compromise. It makes perfect sense that the team wants to wait to give Marshall a major deal until they see how he recovers from the hip surgery (not to mention the forearm and hand troubles that continued to bother him in 2008) and if he can stay completely out of trouble for a full calendar year. At this point, Marshall is a risk, and it seems everyone but him knows it. At a time when you would think Marshall would be doing everything to take the spotlight off of himself (in light of the ESPN piece a couple of weeks ago), he’s doing even more damage to his reputation.
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Old 07-12-2009, 07:41 PM   #2
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Well, it’s been a heck of an offseason, wouldn’t you say?
Yeah, definitely a good read, though the Dumervil stuff seems rough...


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McDaniels has been in touch with Marshall’s agent.
I should've kept a list of all the guys who shouted me down when I posted months ago that Josh is "all in charge," and had "near Shanahan-like power."

"No BroncoBuff, no!", they all screamed ... "how how can you call Xanders Josh's "pet boy"?! It's a power SHARING system, Buff ... power SHARING!"


Guess they were wrong, eh?
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Old 07-12-2009, 07:51 PM   #3
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Yeah, definitely a good read, though the Dumervil stuff seems rough...



I should've kept a list of all the guys who shouted me down when I posted months ago that Josh is "all in charge," and had "near Shanahan-like power."

"No BroncoBuff, no!", they all screamed ... "how how can you call Xanders Josh's "pet boy"?! It's a power SHARING system, Buff ... power SHARING!"


Guess they were wrong, eh?
Well, we don't actually know if that information means what you think. Perhaps it just means that McDaniels is keeping tabs on his player, it doesn't mean that McDaniels is in charge of negotiations. Being in contact with the agent could mean "Hey, do you think Brandon will be at Training Camp?" THAT sort of thing. I don't think any of us has a complete picture of what the power structure in the Broncos organization looks like right now, and I think that any attempt to show that you DO know what the power structure looks like, either a shared system or Shanny 2.0, is an attempt to back up your side of the McDaniels sucks/is alright argument.
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Old 07-12-2009, 08:12 PM   #4
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C'mon KI ... that's a broad statement about team-agent contacts, not a one-time call to "check on" a player. No, that line means what I said.

You are right about this being part of the Josh sucks/is alright argument though. However just to be clear, and even though I've posted this a million times, I have few if any objections to Josh the coach, only Josh the (neophyte and sometimes disastrous) general manager.

And yes we DO know the power structure, just pay attention to the quotes! After the Cutler trade, Bears GM Jerry Angelo spoke at the announcement of the trade, and he said Josh's name again and again and again, but never once mentioned his GM counterpart Xanders ... which would be poor etiquette had Xanders had any real involvement at all. But he didn't. because Josh is all in charge

Not enough? How about this: Patrick D. Bowlen himself wrote a post-Cutler-gate letter to season ticket holders, wherein he mentioned Josh over and over, but Xanders just once or twice, and then only as a tack-on to Josh.


Jeez, I am so weary of all this ... Lord let me rest
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Old 07-12-2009, 08:14 PM   #5
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Besides, if Xanders was a REAL general manager, and Josh telephoned an agent himself ... that would be a heinous breach of protocol.



Please Lord, I beseech thee ...
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Old 07-12-2009, 08:39 PM   #6
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of course mcdaniels contacted his agent, mcd wants him here. people who work on contracts have a law background, i think xanders does. i think how it sort of happens is they work out a contract and mcd (as essentially acting as talent evaluator) decides if he is worht that much money.
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Old 07-12-2009, 08:51 PM   #7
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of course mcdaniels contacted his agent, mcd wants him here. people who work on contracts have a law background, i think xanders does. i think how it sort of happens is they work out a contract and mcd (as essentially acting as talent evaluator) decides if he is worht that much money.
No no .... if what you say were true, the protocol would be (and IS on every team with a real GM) the coach and GM confer about need/value, and then the GM himself deals with the agent.

I'm tellin' ya, that's just the way it's done.


EXAMPLE: Scott Pioli is a real GM ... so do you figure Todd Haley was calling the Falcons about the Tony Gonzales trade? See what I'm saying? Please tell me you do ... PLEASE!
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Old 07-12-2009, 08:56 PM   #8
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No no .... if what you say were true, the protocol would be (and IS on every team with a real GM) the coach and GM confer about need/value, and then the GM himself deals with the agent.

I'm tellin' ya, that's just the way it's done.


EXAMPLE: Scott Pioli is a real GM ... so do you figure Todd Haley was calling the Falcons about the Tony Gonzales trade? See what I'm saying? Please tell me you do ... PLEASE!
i guarantee haley was informed about the trade before it happened, and most likely had to sign off on it. not every team has a "real" GM, including every team pat bowlen has ever put on the field. the guys on sirius talk about it alot and the one former olineman said he will always pick the coach/gm over two separate positions. pat bowlens model is to allow the coach to pick and deal with the players he gets, and its been largely successful as you well know. we have a full scouting staff and coaches that help this process and provide all relevant information the coach needs, but at the end of the day he picks the players and is held accountable when too many go wrong (see: shanahan) and now the checkbook seems to be kinda closed up, not 100% sure on that one though
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Old 07-12-2009, 09:01 PM   #9
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i guarantee haley was informed about the trade before it happened, and most likely had to sign off on it. not every team has a "real" GM, including every team pat bowlen has ever put on the field. the guys on sirius talk about it alot and the one former olineman said he will always pick the coach/gm over two separate positions. pat bowlens model is to allow the coach to pick and deal with the players he gets, and its been largely successful as you well know. we have a full scouting staff and coaches that help this process and provide all relevant information the coach needs, but at the end of the day he picks the players and is held accountable when too many go wrong (see: shanahan) and now the checkbook seems to be kinda closed up, not 100% sure on that one though
Okay so .... now you agree, but want to point out that Bowlen's always done it that way, and he's been largely successful? I'll buy that. But this time Pat said it'd be different. And seeing Josh had zero front office experience, it should have been different.

But I seriously doubt Todd Haley is "signing off" on any trades. Saying he "signs off" implies he has veto power, and to the extent those two clauses logically follow, it's a preposterous thought.
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Old 07-12-2009, 09:04 PM   #10
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Okay so .... now you agree, but want to point out that Bowlen's always done it that way, and he's been largely successful? I'll buy that. But this time Pat said it'd be different. And seeing Josh had zero front office experience, it should have been that way.

I agree there ... but I seriously doubt Haley's signing off on any trades. Saying he "signs off" implies he has veto power, and to the extent those two clauses logically follow, it's a preposterous thought.
i agree a traditional GM rule is exactly how you said, but its not the way the broncos ever have, or ever will, use a GM. at the end of the day, the HC makes all roster decisions, and i like it that way myself as well. pat said it would be different in that no one is above pat, the coach doesnt work for the GM or the other way around, both will answer to pat. the gm and coach on this team work together. pat said if they have a dispute, they will talk to pat, but they dont expect there to be many, i really like the power schedule they have here now.
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Old 07-12-2009, 09:06 PM   #11
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Agree with most of that.

Three identical relationships:

Reeves - Beake
Shanahan - Sundquist
McDaniels - Xanders
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Old 07-12-2009, 09:11 PM   #12
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Agree with most of that.

Three identical relationships:

Reeves - Beake
Shanahan - Sundquist
McDaniels - Xanders
and if you see the sway there with teh shanahan power structure, you can see why pat got kinda pissed off with the stagnant results: there was only one person to blame. it was turning into mike shanahans denver broncos. pretty similar to now, except mike did not need to get permission, did not need to do anything with pat except say hey. with mcdaniels, pat is back in the mix and being involved with the team. hes the owner, he should be involved (but not RUNNING the team ala snyder, davis, jones etc)
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Old 07-12-2009, 11:19 PM   #13
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and if you see the sway there with teh shanahan power structure, you can see why pat got kinda pissed off with the stagnant results: there was only one person to blame.
Well, there was a stretch there where we all blamed [Defensive Coordinator]. Man, that guy sucked.

Also, BB, I'm not sold yet, but I see what you're saying. I could see it being the case where Xanders just hasn't USED any of his authority yet. Maybe McDaniels is the one with all the ideas at the meetings, and Xanders is just saying "Yeah, sure." but what do I know.

Anyways, Go Skepticism!

Last edited by Killericon; 07-12-2009 at 11:28 PM..
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Old 07-12-2009, 11:22 PM   #14
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Well, there was a stretch there where we all blamed [Defensive Coordinator]. Man, that guy sucked.
that was a direct result of shanahan though, which in hindsight is so frustrating to see how many DCs shanny went through. and he was gonna stick with slowick...glad we got nolan for sure.
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Old 07-12-2009, 11:28 PM   #15
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- OLB/DE Robert Ayers: Yes, Knowshon Moreno was impressive and I expect Moreno to make a major impact this season. But Ayers got more work with the first team of any rookie. He also showed tremendous work ethic by staying late after every practice to practicing catching balls from the Jugs machine. He was on the field for a solid 15 minutes, at least, longer than all of his defensive teammates each day.

Awesome. Can't wait.
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Old 07-12-2009, 11:46 PM   #16
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- OLB/DE Robert Ayers: Yes, Knowshon Moreno was impressive and I expect Moreno to make a major impact this season. But Ayers got more work with the first team of any rookie. He also showed tremendous work ethic by staying late after every practice to practicing catching balls from the Jugs machine. He was on the field for a solid 15 minutes, at least, longer than all of his defensive teammates each day.

Awesome. Can't wait.
to trade a possible top 10 pick in next years draft he damn well better be doing everything he can. hit them jugg boy..... i hope he's the next bailey. it would be nice to see another bronco play his whole time in the same uni.
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Old 07-12-2009, 11:56 PM   #17
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LOSERS (and we mean this in the nicest way possible)

- This girl:

I made it a better article in 5 seconds.
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Old 07-13-2009, 12:08 AM   #18
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to trade a possible top 10 pick in next years draft he damn well better be doing everything he can. hit them jugg boy..... i hope he's the next bailey. it would be nice to see another bronco play his whole time in the same uni.
you mean a possible top 32 pick.....
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Old 07-13-2009, 11:06 AM   #19
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Go Skepticism!
... I'll have to remember that one.
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Old 07-13-2009, 11:21 AM   #20
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you mean a possible top 32 pick.....
It's a definite top 32 pick.
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