Denver Broncos Passing Camp a Prelude of Things To Come?

Chaz MattsonAnalyst IMay 28, 2010

In football there is a reason behind having so many mini-camps.  It’s all about repetitions, both mental and physical, and it’s the only time all year long where roster positioning on the team matters the least. 

Certainly the idea is that it’s good to get the reps now, but when the teams start reporting in July and preseason starts, that is where the real evaluation begins.  Right now with about two months to go before the NFL starts the 2010 football season, the Denver Broncos are busy at work like every other team working out the kinks in their game. 

On the offensive side of the ball that translates into much work to be done.  There is an emphasis on overcoming last season's hang-ups while implementing new system adjustments. 

By all indications, the first real move in the Broncos quarterback race was made on Thursday when Tom Brandstater was passed on the depth chart by Tim Tebow.

It’s a move that does not come as a huge surprise since the Broncos have clearly not been as high on Brandstater as they have been on Tebow.  Coach Josh McDaniels has always emphasized that it’s an open competition and more or less down played any roster moves at this juncture. 

Still, this is an important day to mark in time.  With Kyle Orton getting most of the first team reps and Brady Quinn close behind, the Broncos are determined to do everything to find their starter for 2010.  Coach McDaniels has emphasized Kyle Orton’s place on the roster as the starter in giving him the most repetitions of the four quarterbacks.  In essence, this is Kyle Orton’s job to lose.  

McDaniels has seen the value in keeping Orton at least through the camps to evaluate any progress he may be making since last season.  There is currently an emphasis to becoming a more consistent football team offensively.  Last year the Achilles Heal of this team was the frequency of drive break downs. 

Additionally, Brandon Marshall accounted for over a quarter of all the Broncos yards accumulated.  Now Marshall is gone and the Broncos are focused on redistributing the load with a revamped offensive scheme which should include more two back sets. 

Having outlined all of that, Kyle Orton threw an interception on his first play from scrimmage in Thursday’s camp to DJ Williams.  The growing pains are self evident, and despite Orton’s shortfalls, he’s still the most veteran quarterback the Broncos have at this juncture.  Brady Quinn has shown signs of life, just like Tim Tebow, and Tom Brandstater is more than likely going to persevere through the latest roster tweak.

This passing camp is anything but a waste of time.  It’s a time for the coaches to see what they have and a time for the quarterbacks to self-evaluate and move forward.  The Denver Broncos have an interesting mix of skill sets, experience, and raw abilities at the quarterback position.  It’s a football experiment in trying to see what will work and what won’t work for the coming season.  At the heart of it all is the competition.

It’s still entirely possible the Broncos will trade Kyle Orton, Brady Quinn, or even Tom Brandstater.  One thing is clear; Tim Tebow stays in Denver for at least a few years to come.  Behind it all, the Broncos are focused on developing Tebow and hoping they have a few good quarterbacks moving forward. 

The prelude to this experiment is that there are growing pains that will be played out in pre-season, but it appears to be headed for an interesting competition to be played out in the 2010 pre-season.


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