Word on the street is that Pat Bowlen is livid. Not that the Broncos gave up 36 points to the Rams. Not even that they lost to the Rams for the first time since the 70s. Sure Spygate II was embarrassing, but that's not what has set him off. His stadium had empty seats for the first time in a long time.
That has peeved Bowlen. Couple that with the fact that Sam Bradford came in and lit up Denver, and you have an owner who is suddenly thinking that 11 million dollars may not be such a bad thing to lose.
So why hasn't Bowlen pulled the trigger? It's simple.
This was Josh McDaniel's plan from the start. Not that the team would be so miserable and not even be in the hunt at the start of December, no I don't think anyone saw that coming. McDaniels will not be fired because he has a golden ticket, a get of jail free card, if you will, sitting in his back pocket.
Now, with the fans demanding his head, the miserable product the Broncos have become and the apparent (albeit small, for now) boycott of the fans, McDaniels may have no choice but to use his pass. It's no secret Denver's season is over. The players know it, the fans know it, even the coaches know it.
Let's review a few key facts:
The Broncos are 3-8, last place in the AFC West.
San Diego is red hot.
So are the Chiefs.
The two teams currently holding the wild card spots are sitting at 9-2 and 8-3.
San Diego's remaining schedule is ridiculously easy.
The Chiefs are 7-4, four games ahead of the Broncos.
The Broncos' magic number is nine. As in nine losses (if it comes at the hands of the Chiefs this Sunday), and Denver will be mathematically eliminated from the playoff race.
RIP 2010 season.
So how, exactly, is Josh going to save his job?
The same way Bowlen will get his fans back in their seats: Tim Tebow will start sometime between this Sunday and when the Texans come to town.
If I were a betting man, I would say mark your calenders for December 12. The Broncos pay a visit to perhaps one of the only teams that is worse than they are, the Arizona Cardinals. I can't see McDaniels throwing Tebow to the wolves and starting him at Kansas City, and two games should be enough experience for Tebow to return home and blow the doors off the weak Texans secondary in front of a sell out crowd. If Tebow shows promise, McD will get another season.
Rest assured, Tebow will start this year. If he doesn't McD will be sent packing at season's end, and he knows it.