This would change how both Miami and Denver operate this season, and would change the way that Denver and Miami would play their remaining opponents. There would also be implications to next year's draft. While it seems like Miami would only want to obtain Orton at little expense to their draft picks or existing team, and at little cost as possible, Denver might just be willing to accommodate Miami and pull the trigger.
Chad Henne separated his shoulder and Matt Moore is now the starter.
Who is Matt Moore? He is a five-year veteran with a career QB rating of 73.5, including 16 TDs, 18 interceptions and six fumbles. Nothing too exciting. But if you look at who he backed up, Henne, there isn't much to get excited about either. Henne has a career QB rating of 75.7 with 31 TDs, 37 interceptions and three fumbles.
At least he hangs onto the ball when he gets hit...
You're never in good shape when you have to go to the streets to find a QB when you're approaching your bye week. Alas, this is the situation Miami finds itself in.
So, who's out there...David Garrard makes the most sense, if you're going to employ the unemployed. Analysts are still wondering why Jacksonville let him go, and Del Rio is probably wondering why he let Garrard go.
Then there are the lower-tier quarterbacks, including Jake Delhomme and Brody Croyle. While Garrard provides the best chance out of the free agents to start next year compared with other free agents, the reality is Miami will still try to draft a quarterback in 2011, unless...
This trade was close to happening before the 2011-12 season started. It was reported that Kyle Orton's contract killed the deal. This all goes back to Josh McDaniels first drafting a quarterback with a first-round pick in Tim Tebow, then turning around and paying Orton over $11 million for a two-year contract.
In 2011 he is scheduled to make $7.3 million. Big money. Big stumbling block for a trade. Yet another McDaniels blunder that is hurting the Broncos. Thus, one of the questions is whether Denver is willing to eat some of this money in order to make the trade palatable to Miami.
With the Patriots and Bills in a tight race for the AFC East title, and Miami sitting without a win, in all reality the Dolphins are pretty much out of it. The Patriots are the Patriots and Buffalo, although having lost to Cincy, is looking pretty impressive (although a collapse is not out of the realm of possibilities for this team).
So what would Orton do for this team that a quarterback like Garrard could not? For one, he would reunite with Brandon Marshall. In 2009, when playing with Orton, Marshall had 101 catches for 1,120 yards and 10 TDs in 15 games played. Last year Marshall had 86 catches for 1,014 yards and three TDs in 14 games played. The yards were there, but not the TDs.
This year he only has one TD and is on course for fewer than five TDs.
Miami gave up two second-round picks for Marshall and absolutely needs him to be an impact player. He was an impact player in Denver with Orton throwing him the rock, and with virtually no running game to balance the passing attack. Additionally, Orton hasn't been out of it for more than a month. He could be more effective than Garrard right off the bat.
That's right. It would finally be Tebow Time in Denver. While Denver's playbook would be narrowed down a bit in order to accommodate a second-year quarterback with throwing mechanics that are still a work in progress, Tebow brings energy and mobility that the Broncos lack. And he brings a fanbase that would be cheering him on, even through his mistakes, which would be booing Kyle Orton otherwise.
Also, Tebow would finally have a chance to prove himself. If he's not the guy then so be it. At 1-3 and facing a good Chargers team on Sunday, Denver is not too far ahead of Miami in terms of the likelihood of making the postseason.
Kyle Orton is a good quarterback on the right team (a serviceable running game, decent protection, a decent offensive coordinator). Miami might not be that team, but Denver should try to convince Miami that he is that guy by making it worth Miami's time. John Fox has an opportunity to make a good strategic move. He should take this opportunity.