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Published on 10/08/2007 at Mon Oct 08 13:11.
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Talk about adding injury to insult… Straight from the Monday presser, Center Tom Nalen, the anchor of our offensive line, has been lost for the season, along with up and coming tight end talent Nate Jackson. The former suffered a biceps tear that requires surgery and four months of recovery (not career-ending), while the latter suffered a “bad tear” to his groin and will require some time to heal.

Coach Shanahan declined to indicate how Nalen’s loss would be compensated, although I would expect either LG Chris Myers to move to center or C Greg Eslinger to be signed from the practice squad. I would prefer to see Eslinger given his shot and keep Myers at left guard, where he’s been improving week to week.

This is nothing short of a huge blow to the Broncos, especially considering Ben Hamilton is not available as Nalen’s backup. We’ll have more later.

  • jocko

    You must be nuts to think that Greg E. can make all of the line calls.
    Move Chris Myers to Center and get Harris into the mix.

  • Kyle

    Do you have some insider knowledge on Eslinger to suggest he couldn’t cut it? If so, please let me know, I love all the info I can get.

    Myers has experience at center in college, Eslinger’s been practicing at the position the past few years. Edge to E. Scouts consistently say E has the technique, if not the power.

  • BroncoFan

    Man, what a tough hit to lose our Center/Captain/one of the good guys. Jackson is a tough loss too but not nearly as bad as losing Nalen. 2 weeks Broncs, put your hearts and minds into this and turn it around. I’ve given up the fire Shanahan montra because I know it will NEVER happen.

  • Kyle

    Mike Shanahan has been our coach for 13 years, with one losing season, and you really want to fire him? Give me (and him) a break.

  • LaurenK

    Hey guys, as I already wrote in one spot on here, I’m going to buy tickets to the October 21st game tomorrow from a guy from craigslist. I was wondering if you know anything I should look for to make sure they are real tickets and not fakes. Thanks in advance! I appreciate it.

  • Crosshare


    I don’t have my Pittsburgh tickets in front of me at the moment, but I’ll tell you what to basically look for. There should be the seat/row/section printed at the top and bottom of the ticket, along with a bar code on the bottom. If they’re a season ticket holder, their last name might be printed on the bottom above the bar code. (It’s an option we’ve opted for after a dispute) I can’t remember what the picture for the Steeler ticket is, but it should have a background of Mile High Stadium in blue and white, Game 5 with the two team’s helmets. These all should be on it, unless they bought them off of ticketmaster. If they are season ticket holders, I would ask to see their membership card that gets printed with each page of tickets for a seat.

  • BroncoFan

    Wow Kyle, as a new reader I had no idea you were such a homer . . . and such a drama queen to boot. Especially when I said I had given up the fire Shanahan talk.

    Oh well, here goes:
    – 13 years and one (1) playoff win without John Elway (who retired 9 seasons ago.)
    – 1 AFC West title post Elway
    – Countless personnel errors (from Maurice Clarett to the handling of Griese, Plummer, and Al Wilson) referred to as the Shanahan shenanigans or Shanahanagains.

    Quoted from earlier post:
    “[Shanahan] walked into a good team, got luckier than any lotto winner in history with a class stud named Terrell Davis, wins 2 Super Bowls with the greatest QB, offensive line, and RB in NFL history and then what? Griese? Shanahanagain! Plummer? Shanahanagain! Al Wilson? Shanahanagain! Countless assistant coaches? Shanahanagain! Now that he has lost Kubiak it has been down hill ever since and will get nothing but worse and worse until he is gone. He’d be a great coach for today’s Cowboys, Colts, Patriots, Chargers but would ruin teams like the Packers, Steelers, or even the Texans. Bowlen will eventually figure it out but by then the new coach will have a complete overhaul on his hands instead of just having to make a few adjustments.”

    So please [in the most dramatic and whining voice I can muster] give me (and your readers) a break.

  • Kyle

    Of course I’m a homer. Only my wife calls me a drama queen (have you been talking to her lately)?

    First, just breathe buddy. We’ve hit rock bottom, we can only go up from here (one would hope).

    Any fan who thinks his team can win without consistency at quarterback is just plain wrong. Shanahan has found ways to win games without a franchise quarterback ever since Elway left. Yet he still knew these guys weren’t enough, and kept making changes until he found the guy he wanted in Jay Cutler.

    So if you want to fire him over the quarterbacks, that’s fine. That’s your argument. But to mention Al Wilson in the same breadth as those guys is ludicrous. The man is hurt, his career may very well be over, and even if he was still on the roster he’d be PUPin’ it with Rod. What did you expect Shanny to do, heal his neck?

    And to say Shanny had nothing to do with the talent that won those Super Bowls is crazy talk too.

    Let me finish by saying this – YES, I BLAME SHANAHAN FOR THIS TEAM’S STRUGGLES THIS YEAR. Completely on him. Horrible decisions thus far. But I credit him for the past and just have more patience with him than you, that’s all.


    P.S. I don’t know who you were quoting, but it wasn’t me, Jonathan or Earl.

  • TustinBronco


    Not to pile on here but I suspect we have not yet seen rock bottom. With Nalen out and Henry looking like he is going to follow suit…

    The rest of the way I see us beating Detroit on the road, KC at home, MIN at home and MAYBE at Oakland. That makes it a 5 or 6 win season tops. Given we were lucky to win the two already in the win column, this could have easily been a 3-13 season. I expect more from the head coach.

    Anyway, I hope that is not the case.

  • Kyle

    Agree KC and Det. I think MIN will be a tough game to win. Stout run defense. Hell of a back.

    I think we’ll beat the Pack because they don’t have a running game.

    We’ll take one of either @Houston or Ten.

    And we’ll surprise one team.

    About 8-8. But none of the game will be as bad as this past Sunday’s, which was rock bottom.

  • BroncoFan

    Fair enough Kyle.
    Just a few (relaxed) comments to counter:
    – Teams have won Super Bowls w/o great QB play – Remember what the Redskins did to us in the Super Bowl? (to name 1)
    – Shany’s mistakes aren’t just at QB. In fact, if he would just stick to a decision, we probably could have done fine with Griese or Plummer, but don’t get me wrong, I prefer our chances w/Cutler. His personnel decisions have been way off the mark in all aspects (Clarett, Browns D-line, with exception to trading Portis for Bailey.
    – Here are a few names that should send a chill up your spine (and pain in Bowlen’s wallet.) Ashley Lelie, Daryl Gardener, Dale Carter, Chester McGlockton, Leon Lett, Jerry Rice, Garrison Hearst, and Luther Ellis. Some decent, many way past their prime, some plane worthless and this is just to name the few I can remember.
    – No I don’t expect him to “heal” Wilson but how about taking care of your own and yes that might be in the same way he is taking care of Smith (who will probably never catch another meaningful pass for the Broncos.) IR, PUP, or anything would be better than Trade, oops they busted us, cut him. He has way too much class and meant too much to this Def for that.
    – Name me one (1) personnel move (again, besides being lucky with drafting Davis) that Shanahan made to win those Super Bowls that a 12 year old couldn’t have made. Alex Gibbs gets all the credit for the O-Line play so don’t go there.
    – Yes Shanahan deserves the blame and is the #1 reason we have lost 8 of our last 12 games. Pittsburgh and Indy both won big last weekend with tons of key injuries so there is no excuse. The offense will continue to struggle without Kubiak . . . PERIOD! Even he though has a history of having trouble in the Red Zone. Look to see how Houston is doing in the Red Zone this year. 2 Words EYE OPENING. Without a QB who can improvise like Elway did, this offensive scheme will always struggle down close.
    – The quote was from my post in a different thread.
    Patience? I’m guessing 6-10 this year, tons of off-season moves/false hopes for fans, an 8-8 record next year, and Shanahan resigns.

  • Kyle

    Fair points BroncoFan, I’m willing to agree to disagree.

    I guess I’m just not built to quit on the Broncos… color me crazy, I still think we can pull this thing out to some degree… I just can’t bring myself to look at it any other way…

    :) Peace.

  • BroncoFan

    Who’s quitting on the Broncos? I am not quitting on them, I am making honest predictions. Just because I feel Shanahan needs fired does not mean I’m quitting them. You yourself predicted 8-8 for the year. Is that pulling it out? I differ slightly and say 6-10 which brings the Broncos 1 step closer to a Shanahanless future.

  • Claudia

    Hey guys – just wanted to post that Denver Broncos Tight End Nate Jackson and Ring of Famer Randy Gradishar will be signing autographs at the Verizon Wireless store

    Saturday 11/17 from 12 noon – 2 pm
    2073 S. Colorado Blvd
    Denver, CO 80210

    NW corner of Colorado Blvd. & Evans Ave.