Adam Gase was promoted earlier this year from quarterbacks coach to offensive coordinator when Mike McCoy left Denver to become the head coach of the San Diego Chargers. Gase was known for his close working relationship with Peyton Manning and helped the future Hall of Fame quarterback get used to his new surroundings in Denver last season.
This year Gase will have less time to spend with Manning. “I will personally be spending less time with him as far as meeting times. I’ll be in meetings, but I like to spread my time out, go a little bit with the tight ends and receivers," Gase said.
Gase is going to be in command of the entire offense. The new-look Broncos offense should be Manning-friendly in addition to featuring a new base set "11 personnel." This formation will get three wide receivers on the field at the same time and will stretch out the defense.
Gase commented on using more "11 personnel" in 2013 because the team added wide receiver Wes Welker in free agency: “We had a good mix of what we call 11/12 personnel with the tight ends, and with [WR Brandon] Stokley being in there [last season], we’ll mix it up. It’s all going to be game plan-predicated. Whatever is best for that week is probably what we’ll focus on."
In addition to more three wide receiver sets, we should also see the Broncos emphasize the outside zone stretch play after using primarily inside zone rushes in 2012. I had to ask Gase if we'd see the zone stretch play Manning used effectively with the Colts. Gase commented, “We’re going to be a little more balanced on inside/outside runs. It’s going to be predicated, obviously, on what the defense is giving us, so as the game goes, it’s probably going to change."
The running back corps was strengthened when the Broncos added Montee Ball (Wisconsin) in the second round of the 2013 NFL draft. Gase likes what he's seen from Ball so far at minicamp: “I’ve enjoyed the last two days being around him. The thing that I love about Montee, that he does, is he has great vision. I never really saw him take the massive shot. He did a great job of being able to avoid the big hit."
Gase also made sure to emphasize what he's seen from second-year running back Ronnie Hillman in "Phase Two" of the offseason program:
Ronnie, the biggest thing I’ve noticed is that he’s bigger. The second year being in our strength staff’s program, he really looks like he’s filled out. I think he’s still only 21. He was so young last year, and what he did in that last game was impressive, because that was a big-time situation, and I think he realized it, and I think he did a really good job of holding on to the ball and making sure he was right on everything he did.”
The Broncos should utilize an up-tempo offense in 2013 featuring Peyton Manning, the passing game and outside zone running. This could be an even more potent offense than the one we saw under Mike McCoy in 2012.