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Published on 05/22/2009 at Fri May 22 14:00.
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The Denver Broncos have had quite the offseason. They fired a head coach, hired a young gun, signed a safety, traded a quarterback, and drafted blindfolded (just kidding – sort of). When all is said and done, the fruits of their labor will be seen on the field; until then, the masses can only speculate.

Don’t count owner Pat Bowlen among the masses. Appearing on ESPN Radio Chicago this week, Bowlen hesitated to comment about the status of his team. Furthermore, when asked about Kyle Orton, Bowlen couldn’t commit to the ex-Bear as the starter.

“It’s a little early for me to start commenting on stuff like that, so we’ll see. We’re going through some OTAs and you know we’re watching guys throw footballs around. But, we’re a long way away-at least I’m a long way-from making any serious judgment calls on who is going to be good and who isn’t.”

We’ve known it’s a race between Chris Simms and Orton, but I’d be able to sleep a lot easier if one of these guys would start to pull away. Hopefuly we’ll get more answers during the Broncos’ minicamp/passing camp on May 26-29, June 2-5 and 8-10.

ESPN Radio Podcast with Pat Bowlen (scroll to about 39:12)

  • roshon2411


    I’m still on the fence with Nolan. What makes him any different than Ray Rhodes, Jim Bates, Larry Coyer or Bob Slovik? Don’t get me wrong I haven’t followed his career closely but I don’t see his track record be any better than the previous DC’s. I know he did well at Baltimore and New York but he succeded Marvin Lewis and Bill Belichick and had done well. All that tells me is he can take a sweet D and not F’ it up. Do you think he can make the players we already have on the roster better or better yet build a D from scratch? Out of all the assitants McD hired, he was the only one I was iffy on, well of course other than his brother.

  • broncoNM

    Wow Whid…i think that is the most upbeat post i have seen from you…I agree that most of us are on the same page and we are just getting anxious for camp/season. Not sure where you got your koolaid but you can always get a refill at MHR…

  • broncoNM

    I get your point about nolan and what he brings in comparison to our past DC’s…but i feel that bates and coyer were good DC’s that didnt get a fair shake. Bates was only here a year and ill admit the defense was horrible but he deserved more time to do his thing (i do think he will have success in tampa)…My memory could be off but i thought our defense performed well under coyer. He did have Al Wilson who was unbelievable but i thought our defense under coyer was active that went after the ball. It was truly a defense that would bend but wouldnt break. Nolan will definitely need a few years to make a complete turn around and he did inherit good defenses but atleast he has had success in this league and has quality experience to offer McD. I feel that Nolan also has something to prove after getting chased out of SF. I do consider him an upgrade from slowik who never had a impressive track record in the NFL.

  • jchase8410

    Hahaha Roshon

    You say name one a player in the NFL that makes a difference like An NBA player. This is laughable to me because you’re one of the people saying now that Cutler’s gone we’re gonna suck. That contradiction makes me laugh more than anything. If cutler makes that much of a difference, you can’t possibly say Dawkins won’t/can’t make that difference on our defense, he did just come off of a pro-bowl season.

  • roshon2411


    I’m with you, i too, feel Bates and Coyer didn’t get their fair shake. Shanny knew his time was coming and didn’t have any faith and wanted a quick change. I agree heartedly that Al Wilson was a playmaker and leader. I think this defense won’t go anywhere till they’re able to find someone to patrol the middle.


    How was my statement a contradiction? With Cutler gone do I think Denver is going to suck, yes. I predict a three game swing. I also mention Shanny leaving and a draft that didn’t address their significant needs, they went into rebuilding mode. I think the loss of a pro bowl QB and a SB bowl winning HC can drop a team 3 games. I didn’t say they’d go 0-16. What moves improved this team? They picked up a ton of RB’s via FA and that wasn’t a glaring weakness. Hilis, Pittman, Torain, and Bell we all serviceable. Is Moreno going to be better than all of them? Yes, but it’ll take a a few years. Adding 30-something FA’s to the secondary might help, but is the DL/LB’s any better? If you would actually read my post, you would have read that. Other teams added better FA’s, made better trades, and filled major holes through the draft. Do you really think the addition of Dawkins is greater than the loss of Cutler? There is a reason why the QB position gets paid more, but the lose of Cutler and no way is the complete basis of my prediction. Even if Tom Brady was on this team, they’d still struggle to make the playoffs. So, you think Dawkins brings what Chauncey brought to the Nuggets? What’s your prediciton for the season?

  • Rob Bronco

    Thanks for proving my point, Kerry. Although it didn’t require much effort on your part.

    I wholeheartedly expect the Broncos to struggle this season. But I live in San Diego, where the Chargers were AWFUL for over a decade. Now that they have a stong team, you would be stunned at the size of the bandwagon. I’ve talked to fans who will admit that they never watched the team and never went to games before the team started winning. And when their team starts losing again, back into their holes they’ll go.

    If the team loses, criticize all you want. But we haven’t seen them play. Teams don’t need a franchise quarterback to win a Super Bowl, just ask the Ravens. They don’t need an all pro running back, just ask the Patriots. They don’t need a seasoned, long-tenured coach, just ask the Steelers.

    The Broncos need consistent play, they need to avoid injuries, and they need their back up players to step in and do their jobs when the starting player is out. McDaniels knows offense. Nolan knows defense. I don’t think we’re drinking the koolaid, I think we’re reserving judgement until we actually see what they do on the field.

    Roshon – put me down for a 8-8 season with the Broncos in the hunt for a playoff spot. I think the Broncos have made some solid moves in the offeseason. I don’t think this group is “better” than what we had last season, but I think we’ve got a lot more support in our running game, and our defense filled a few holes and picked up some depth, which we didn’t have last season. If you want to find me, I’ll be the guy in San Diego with his fingers crossed twice a year when the Broncs face the Chargers. I HAAAAAAATE losing to that crappy team and their legion of bandwagon fans! I’m sure anyone who lives in Oakland or Kansas City feels the same way. lol

  • Joe H.

    Yeah Rob I live in the Kansas City area(grew up in Denver)and I hate when we lose to the Chiefs. I never hear the end of it from my friends and co-workers! Although I haven’t heard it in a couple of years because the fans finally realized that the Chiefs SUCK!!!! I used to hear before every season starts that this was the season that the Chiefs were going to the SB!! Anyways there are some people on here that can’t move on. They absolutely won’t give McDaniels a chance at all!!! I just hope that he proves all them naysayers wrong and them some naysayers will come back on here and eat some crow!!!!! GO BRONCOS BABY!!!!!!!

  • Joe H.

    **i meant same naysayers** sorry

  • Rob Bronco

    LOL…Joe, you feel my pain! There’s nothing I hate more than losing to the Raiders, but losing to the Chargers is a very close second. These fans act like their team is the freakin’ Patriots! Like they’ve won 3 Super Bowls in 5 years or something.

    It doesn’t matter if we “give McDaniels a chance” or not. He’s the head coach of our team. I say we reserve our judgement and wait for all of this to play out. If he drives the team into the ground, then burn him at the stake. But maybe we should wait to light the fire until we actually play a few games?

  • roshon2411

    Rob Bronco – right on, 8-8 is little more optimistic than what I see… but just read that Vegas has them in for 7 1/2 wins. Now Vegas isn’t always right but who is? I like to say sports betting is a hobby of mine and Vegas does it’s homework for sure. So they don’t see an improvement for this team as well. And I see your point of not needing a top QB(Dilfer) RB(Patriots) Coach(Tomlin) but all those teams were top in something else. Ravens had a top 5 all-time defense, Patriots were solid team at every postion and had Tom Brady. And the Steelers were just a couple years removed for a Super Bowl win and of course had the D. If Denver can find a similar scenario, they’ll be fine. I don’t have alot of faith they can get back to the top without a quality QB. Of the 43 SB winning QB’s how many aren’t in the HOF? I believe 17 right now, thats including future HOF’s Farve(1), P Manning(1), Brady(3) with potential HOF’s in Big Ben(2), E. Manning(1) and Warner(1). Maybe, this Tom Brandstater is the next Brady, don’t know, only time will tell. Maybe Cutler breaks his leg and the Bears fail miserably and they can draft Bradford or McCoy?

    Another question, anyone seen authentic throwback jerseys for sale yet? I’m not big on the replica jersey’s. Not sure who I’m looking to get yet, I’m going to have to put some thought into it, since being burned by Cutler. At least it looks like my Marshall jersey is safe for one more year.

  • (dee)

    Hey Guys,

    Just dropped in to see what’s up … what are we arguing about? I scanned thru this entire tread and only picked out one thing from Kerry’s post, so I use it to summarize my thoughts any and all pre season predictions or forecasts … here goes:

    Wait until September and then we’ll see who “makes a toilet” on whose face!

    Have a nice summer guys!…. I’ll check back when we make some real football moves.

  • roshon2411

    ESPN has their NFL power rankings out, Denver sits right now at 25.

    They have the Bengals ahead of them, ouch! They don’t have high hopes for the Buccaneers either…

  • kerry

    and does everybody know what is the really sad thing about this head coach? he thinks this ISNT a rebuilding/transition year. this moron actually thinks we are gonna do something big this year. i wonder if thats what Rod Marinelli felt when he took over the Lions? lol. its sad when you have a dillusional head coach. oh wait Shanahan was that way when he GUARENTEED the playoffs last year. i guess he forget it takes some defense to win games or something like that im not really sure what his mode of thinking was, but im pretty sure it takes defense to win games. lol. maybe Shanahan missed that memo.

  • TD30isMVP

    After sifting through all the comments (or most) I feel the need to voice a couple opinions-
    1) This is a free website that updates quickly (unless finals are near) and usually entertaining to read, so you ingrates that complain about the validity of the article or the “misleading” title should kindly quit complaining, or better yet contribute an article yourself during the doldrums of football.
    2) I liked Cutler (two jerseys home/away, signed freaking football, and a Rookie card) but he is not to be compared to Elway, he was never the savior of the franchise, he was a strong armed guy from Vanderbilt that figured out he will make a ton of money by forcing a trade and playing the victim. Fact is McDaniels should have pulled the trigger on the trade for his old QB that already knew the offense, instead we end up with Orton or Simms.
    3) Who cares what the owner said or didn’t say because you never believed him every year when he said we were going to the Super Bowl.

  • jchase8410

    My prediction for the season? Have you not read any off my previous comments? I think it is asinine to predict next seasons results without even having a padded practice yet.

    Now it is obvious that Denver’s front 7 remains pretty much the same as last year, personnel wise. It can be assumed that anyone who makes it to the NFL has some skills, or natural talents. What makes decent players into good ones, good players into great ones, and great players into HOFers is the level of coaching. The better coached teams are the ones who perform consistently at a high level. With an upgrade at every level and position on the defense, it can also be assumed that the players will perform better. I’m not saying that we have any superstars who haven’t reached their potential, but we MAY have guys that will be decent with the right developemental coaching. Only looking at the players named on the roster is foolish. If everyone knew exactly what they were doing, and had it all figured out, there would be no need for coaches. Most of the DL guys are young and relatively new to the NFL, and have not been coached up to an NFL level. Give them a chance to learn and grow in an actual scheme, and they may surprise you.

    I may be WAAAY off base here, and I may be wrong. However, if Nolan and Co. think they have the pieces they need in place, which they must since no action was taken other than a few journeyman FA pickups, I will give them the benefit of the doubt. They have been around a long time, and are pretty good at what they do.

    In closing, I refuse to make a prediction about this season just yet (much like Bowlen won’t make a prediction on KO). I will trust that the coaches know what they are doing until they prove otherwise. And Roshon, Billups-Dawkins was an analogy, not to say they have equal effects on their teams. It was just to show what attitude, accountability, and emotion Dawkins could bring to the defense.

  • jchase8410

    *Coaching upgrades at every level and position*

  • kerry

    emotion and accountability that Dawkins can bring to the defense. um ok. didnt we just try that with Lynch? yeah i think we did. bringing in old safeties doesnt make the defense better. i think Shanahan proved that doesnt work.

  • Kyle

    Lynch was a huge addition to the defense before he got hurt in 2007. Our defense was killer with him and Al Wilson on the field.

  • kerry


    and we dont have anything resembling Al Wilson.

  • Kyle

    Of course not. But therefore Dawkins isn’t a good addition?

  • roshon2411

    I think Dawkins would be a great addition if we were close to reaching the Super Bowl. Don’t get me wrong, Dawkins will bring valueble leadership to many of the rookies on this team. But I have a feeling he wouldn’t have signed if he would have known the Cutler fiasco was going to happen. And don’t give me this “he signed for the coach, not QB” BS. That was him being PC. Dawkins goal is to win a Super Bowl not be an assitant coach on the field. Is he a good addition? Hell yes. But that doesn’t take much to say, when your replacing the bums Denver had last year. I think the real key will be Andra Davis. Denver’s defense was never that great, but Al Wilson skill alone was able to hide many of the wholes on the field. That’s why I was hoping for a Maualuga, Laurinaitis, or Sintim in the draft. Maybe Kerry is right, and Maualuga is a no talent ass-clown. I think it would have been a shot in the arm of the Denver defense to get someone who could blow people up like Al Wilson. Hopefully the new #56 can bring some heat.

  • Craig

    Ha, I’m still waiting for Jarvis Moss and Tim Crowder to learn and grow. I’m glad Cutler is gone. With a few years in the basement, maybe will bring in some decent talent. Why are so many people afraid to give out draft grades and make predictions? It’s the act of forecasting in advance. Id be pissed if the weather man said “it’s only Monday, I’m not going to give the weekend forecast till Friday.” Sack up grow a pair! My draft grade is a B+, prediction for the season 4-12 and what would have been a top 5 pick. To keep the flames down, Denver trades the Chicago #1, their early #2 with a couple other picks to move up and grab a top notch QB.

  • kerry


    Dawkins is a decent addition. not as great as most think. the guy came here to win a SB and McDaniels effectively ruined that chance by dealing Cutler. id bet anything Dawkins would have NEVER signed here if he knew Cutler would have been dealt t0 Chicago. and the thing is, we are gonna have Dawkins and Reynaldo Hill as our safeties and that will slow the progress of the young safeties this team has.

  • T-Money

    Dawkins has publicly stated that he did NOT come here because of Jay Cutler. Yet i still agree with you.

  • kerry

    of course Dawkins is publicly gonna say that. most players dont come out and say whats really on their minds. but i wish they would. i would love to have seen DJ Williams or John Lynch to come out to the podium and say “what the fuck is Bob Slowik calling on the defense” or Cutler come out and say ” why the fuck did Shanahan call a WR bubble screen on 3 and 1″

  • robtink242

    this article was filled with cheap shots. the team just had passing camp and i would love to see clarity at the D Line. I’m really would like to know how Tom Brandstater is developing.

    starters so far on offense:
    and our online doesn’t change

  • robtink242

    there might be a spread package but this team is going to pound the football.

    as for defense
    Boss/ robinson?
    Ayers/ Dumervile/moss- pass rusher LB
    reid- DE?
    Baker/thomas -NT?
    peterson/crodwer/who knows? DE

    the front seven is a complete mystery. i know that i want larsen, woodyard, barret, jack williams & josh bell get plenty of playing time.

  • jchase8410


    “no talent ass-clown” nice reference to Michael Bolton.

  • WhidbeyBronco

    Wow… Ok Jchase, I’m with u …no predictions yet!!!! I don’t like to be wrong, so I’ll hold off until we actually know something!

    Dawkins was a good sign …duh!

    Thank You! But they won’t pour me any Koolaid over at MHR, they force everyone to take it IV these days! Check out the Sh%t I started there yesterday in today’s posts! BTW They totally misunderstood me…. I loved Cutler but (tho I’m still pissed) I’m a Freaking Broncos FANatic!!


    Nolan …not my 1st choice but I believe him to be a vast improvement over our last 4 or 5 DCs at least! Plus he’s respected and should be given room to work by our young coach. I’m hopeful.

    Long time no see
    Are you a male or female Dee? I’ve always wondered, doesn’t matter, just wondered.



    Joe H.
    I moved from within sight of the friday night fireworks 3 years ago! Them Chiefs fans hated me there! Good fans actually.

    Your time would be far better spent playing your new Taylor than arguing with Kerry!

    Go Broncos!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • roshon2411


    I wasn’t sure if any one would catch that…

    I’ll be honest with you, I love his music. I do. I’m a Michael Bolton fan. For my money, I don’t know if it gets any better than when he sings When a Man Loves a Woman!!!!

  • DC

    Why should bowlen be? He knows deep down he had a special player at the most pivotal position on the field. Now he has a bottom of the barrel QB in Orton. He may be a trust fund baby but at least he’s somewhat of a realist.

  • Tom9798

    The Bronco’s will go 11-5 . . . (If the folks in Vegas are so smart they would have predicted that 19 states would have legalized commercial gambling before they spent umpteen millions of dollars re-decorating the desert! ) . . . . . win the AFC West . . . beat a team from back east for the Conference . . . and win the Superbowl . . .

    I’ve said this for months . . . . but I will paraphrase my blog from 5/3 . . . .

    It’s a gut feeling that I think more and more people are starting to feel . . .

    The last three years we wallowed in mediocrity . . . kind of the way the Bronco’s were in 93,94, and 95 . . . and I’m not feeling that mediocrity anymore . . .

    It’s a mindset thing that starts with the personnel . . . and the coaches . . . .

    Getting Hill and Goodman from the Dolphins was huge . . . they were instrumental in turning the crappy Dolphins into the AFC East Champion . . . and they will be sorely missed in Miami . . . it’s the mindset that they bring here . . .

    Same goes for Dawkins . . . incredible mindset that we stole from Philly . . . instrumental in five trips to the NFC Championship . . .

    I feel our mediocre special teams are going to be a lot better this year . . . and we already have incredible weapons on our Offense . . . .

    Getting Moreno . . . (although I wanted Orakpo in the worst way) . . . another Georgia running back reminds me of the way I felt when we got Terrell Davis from Georgia in 95’ . . . I have the feeling that him and Hillis are going to have great success . . . much the way that Davis and Howard Griffith had . . .

    I know the Defensive line and Linebackers are the intangible . . . but somehow I feel that getting Reid from the Colts and Fields from the 49’ers is going to play out well at NT . . . and I feel there is probably a diamond or two in the rough from the UDFA’s . . . .

    We already have the linebackers to get the job done . . .

    I think we are going to have a great year and shock a whole lot of people . . . . T

  • T-Money

    Loving the optimism Tom.

  • Joe H.

    Whidbey,yeah they are good fans. I took my son to the Broncos-Chiefs game when they played on Thanksgiving night and I was wearing my Bronco gear and they were pretty cool to me. A little harrassing here and there but it was all in jest. Had a good time. Plus the tailgating is pretty awesome at Arrowhead!!! GO BRONCOS!!!!

  • (dee)


    My old nemesis (just joking )

    I’m a guy I dont know if my comments portray a female tone? I’ll work on the swearing in my post! lol

    Anything new with the Broncos? Apparently Prater loves this Paxton guy ….

  • jchase8410


    He’s pretty good. Guess…You’re God Damn right he is!!!

  • kerry

    hey Whidbey:

    dont be comitting blasphemy against Metallica. i will have none of that!! lol.

  • Jack Burton

    I don’t know if I would read too much into this. Bowlen would be the first to tell you he is not qualified to judge talent. I think he is simply saying its too early to know, particularly if you’re not really qualified to judge personnel.

  • Lars

    Metallica blows

  • Roy


    Are you on Whidbey Island in WA?

  • WhidbeyBronco

    yep Whidbey WA!! Paradise!

    Yep on the KC tailgating too… the best I’ve seen! Too bad there’s so much red there!

    Dee, No you never sounded female lol. I just wondered.

    Go Orange & Blue!!

  • Roy

    I am down in Bremerton. I have a couple of friends that are stationed up there. It is always awesome to run into other die hard Broncos fans up here in the NW.

  • jchase8410

    Its a Broncos nation…I went to the last beatdown of the season last year, cause I live here in SoCal, and I was surprised how much Orange was in the stadium….one might say it was predominately orange

  • DB

    Can everyone agree with out the trade for billups to Denver, the Nuggs wouldn’t be where they are today. Yes. it’s pretty much a fact. If the Bronc’s picked up Ray Lewis this off season you better believe that our D would instantly be better. Maybe not better physically, but deffinatly better mentally. Just like Billups, Lewis is a leader on the field, makes plays, and knows how to get the “team” going. I’ve never seen anyone better then Lewis at his leadership role, and would instantly make a denfese better. Dawkins is the same way. We need leadership and confidence to our defense and Dawkins is the right solution for that role.

    I don’t think Denver will be contending this coming season. Just an opinion, but i say that because this year reminds me of my Senior year in football. My coach for my first three years in high school, was very sucessful, winning two state championships and led us to three straight conference titles. Anyway, he retired after my Junior year and we hired a new coach. For a team that was ranked number one in the state and we ended up not even making the playoffs. Getting a new head coach changes A LOT. its scary. maybe it will be better for this team, but thats why i don’t think we will be contending this year. :(

  • toto

    Kyle Orton is not the future for the Broncos, MICHAEL VICK is available, just go for him, trust that he has change, and make history happen

  • Len

    Vick could be the new Marlon Briscoe

  • JeffG

    Michael Vick? Seriously?

    Somebody hasn’t been paying attention…