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Published on 11/15/2010 at Mon Nov 15 16:49.
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Quarterback Kyle Orton #8 of the Denver Broncos greets his teammates as they enter the field to face the Kansas City Chiefs at INVESCO Field at Mile High on November 14, 2010 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Chiefs 49-29.  (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Quarterback Kyle Orton #8 of the Denver Broncos greets his teammates as they enter the field to face the Kansas City Chiefs at INVESCO Field at Mile High on November 14, 2010 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Chiefs 49-29. (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Over the past few weeks, there have been some scattered murmurings occurring in NFL circles regarding the Denver Broncos‘ quarterback situation — talk not unlike the hushed whispers one might hear in a king’s palace shortly before his subjects execute a coup.

The talk starts innocently enough: “Our current regime is faltering. Maybe it wouldn’t be faltering under another’s reign.” From there, given enough of a frenzy, the rumors and mis-education spread like wildfire. “Our ruler is costing us.” Even as any half-logical critical thinker would conclude the issues go deeper than one person, the hysteria propels the disenchantment. “We don’t stand a chance with him.”

Thank goodness the majority of Broncos fans, and, more importantly, Broncos brass, are half-logical critical thinkers. Kyle Orton has done nothing to deserve such talk, and on Sunday, he showed he is capable of quarterbacking a dominant football team when the other pieces fall into place.

Orton led the Broncos to three touchdown drives in the first quarter of Sunday’s 49-29 victory over Kansas City, finishing with a career-high four touchdown passes. He tallied 296 yards on the day, completing 22 of 34 passes for a 131.5 rating. His career high could have been much higher — Orton maneuvered the offense so well, Tim Tebow was twice allowed to score in goal line work.

It doesn’t get much better than that.

Quarterback Kyle Orton #8 of the Denver Broncos looks for a receiver against the Kansas City Chiefs at INVESCO Field at Mile High on November 14, 2010 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Chiefs 49-29.  (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Quarterback Kyle Orton #8 of the Denver Broncos looks for a receiver against the Kansas City Chiefs at INVESCO Field at Mile High on November 14, 2010 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Chiefs 49-29. (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

To date, Orton is boasting a 96.4 QB rating and is ranked 2nd in the NFL in passing yards. In any other season, he’d be first, but in 2010 he finds himself trailing San Diego‘s Philip Rivers, who appears set to smash the all-time NFL passing mark.

Orton’s success is no hot streak folly — at his current pace nine games into the season, Orton will finish 2010 with 4,988 yards, 28 touchdowns, and 9 interceptions, the first two surpassing all-time Denver Broncos single season franchise records.

And NFL loudmouths, Broncos pundits, and nearly half of America were seriously talking about benching him?

You want to end the franchise’s most impressive passing performance midway through the season because the run-deficient, defense-absent Broncos have been losing games, Jason Cole? You want to start a rookie project quarterback instead of a proven passer because the former “just wins,” Tim Tanaka?

That “just wins” logic was the same argument that brought many fans to accept Orton early in 2009 following the Jay Cutler trade. “Jay Cutler puts up stats, Kyle Orton just wins,” they said.

Kyle Orton was a winner in Chicago who didn’t put up big numbers. He’s playing better than ever in Denver, yet he’s 11-13 as a starter here.

Clearly, winning on the football field requires a lot more than success at one position. And losing certainly stems from more than struggles at one position (not that Kyle’s performances could even be considered “struggling”).

Following the logic of the murmurers, the Broncos should have benched 2009 sack king Elvis Dumervil after his sack pace slowed midway through last season.

No, the Broncos should consider extending Kyle Orton’s contract — yes, again — before they consider benching him. If McDaniels is able to turn the rest of the ship around, most fans will see the Broncos have the Quarterback of the Future already locked up in their Quarterback of the Present.

And in that case, I say let Tim Tebow watch from the sidelines til kingdom come.

  • http://twitter.com/dxmanning Joshua Manning

    I really won't mind extending Kyle Orton’s contract BUT he 28-years-old. The older you get the more money you have to pay and plus we don't know if he can keep this up for so long? Other than that, Orton is a BEAST!!! He would do alot better with the Chicago Bears IMO.

  • TheTroglodyte

    I've been a harsh critic of his all year but he certainly made me eat some of my words yesterday. By far the best game I have ever seen him play as a pro. I hope this is a trend that continues and all the little things I have pointed out in the past about him were do to other factors not under his control.

    Great game Mr. Orton!

  • 1975BroncoFan

    He's silenced (or should have) every criticism. “He can't throw deep.” “He can't throw deep with accuracy.” “He's a game manager, not a playmaker.”

    Never mind he's played injured the last two years and still put up decent numbers.

    Now that's he's finally healthy, he and Brandon Lloyd (who?) are tearing up the NFL. Give him a decent defense and running game, and he's as good as there is right now.

  • anthony33

    1975BF

    Agree, he has silenced critcs on most every aspect of his game except for two. 1) His ability to play and bring a team back when they are down by 10 or more points and 2) His ability to make plays and score TD's from the red zone.

    Sunday was a big step toward fixing the red zone issues. If he continues to be consistent with that then there is only one piece left to fix. And I can cetainly live with that because they will be playing from behind with far less frequency!!

  • adrenaline27

    I really hope they change and decided to keep the orange jerseys as there primary home uniforms.

  • mikebirty

    can you ever really silence critics anymore?

    or is the best you can expect to stop them complaining about you until next Sunday?

  • NMBronc

    5-14 folks, 5-14.

    Sober up. He is still the best back-up in the league. One lopsided game should not sway your opinion. Why? Refer back to Anthony's two points above.

    Just like Moreno actually showing some heart and running hard for one game does not change my opinion of him.

  • anthony33

    adrenaline27 and all the BT bunch:

    Go to the Denver Post site and read Dave Krieger's article. He gives out the email address of the Bronx PR dept and is starting a write-in campaign to go back to the ORANGE.

    Something I asked BT to do after the Jet game.

    Kyle, I'm not sure how to do the link thing, but it's up to you, MHR, Predoninately Orange (how appropreate) and MHS to get these addresses posted and bombard the Bronx offices!!!

    Bring back OUR orange!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Nelliesman93

    No running game and lack of an offensive line create red zone troubles for ALL quarterbacks.

    Orton is the man and has done nothing but prove that he deserves to be the starter. If you look at his career, this is actually is 2nd full season as a starting QB. His rookie year, 2005, was a fluke because the Bears had such a dominating defense. 2006 he didn't play at all and didn't play for almost two seasons until the end of 2007. 2008 he was injured but was showing signs of being really good. He had a storied career at Purdue and was the only Purdue QB to ever take them to 4 consecutive bowl games.

    I was actually upset that the Bears let him get away. He's smart and yeah, he can actually throw the ball with accuracy.

    Tebow should be sitting on the bench for quite a while unless he chooses another position. Orton deserves to be the starting QB.

  • Bucky

    And your Point is made below…

  • 5280

    It's funny how the Dallas cowboys are absolutley horrenhous this year and everyone in america seems to still be all over their nuts but we have a better record then them by 3 games and everyone thinks we're hopless. America is and always will be denver haters. we've proved them wrong before and we'll do it again. Jason Cole is a jackass!

  • lars94

    “It's funny how the Dallas cowboys are absolutley horrenhous this year and everyone in america seems to still be all over their nuts but we have a better record then them by 3 games and everyone thinks we're hopless.”

    Denver 3 – 6

    Dallas 2 – 7

  • ORTNO

    He's still a 3-6 quarterback. Winners find a way to win without excuses. He does not do that. He's an OK quarterback that can't consistently lead his team where and when it counts.

  • Pingback: Broncos Links | Predominantly Orange | A Denver Broncos Blog

  • AKfan

    Great game but Anthony's points are valid. Orton needs to prove that he can play at his best when the game is on the line. He needs to prove he can consistently win in Denver and lead Denver to the playoffs. Monday night will be a great opportunity to show the nation what kind of qb he is. If he can go out and keep Denver in the game and make plays in the 4th quarter he will be on the right track. Matt Cassel put 469 yards and 4 td's and I did not walk away thinking he was special, and Orton has had many similar games this year (empty stats). Time for Orton to go toe to toe with Rivers on national tv in a game that could save the season for Denver. Start doing that consistently and he may be around longer than next year.

  • nosky

    Stats are hollow without WINS to back it up. I know you love Orton and that's fine, good for you. I like him just fine, but my interest in the Broncos extends to more than just one player, and I want to see the team WIN, period.

    On another note, I'm really tired of anti-Tebow people dressing up their feelings as adoration of Orton. It's really transparent.

  • areferee

    public.relations@Broncos.NFL.net

  • Dabikepro

    The Saints have had huge trouble in the Red Zone this year because of their poor run game without Thomas or Bush, but that doesn't mean that Drew Brees is a poor QB

  • Dabikepro

    Dude…numbers are never hollow…his numbers show great things and they show bad things, but there still true. This team has been playing bad and there are many reasons for it. Orton has played that well with all the bad…come on…can't a guy get some lovin!

  • anthony33

    I never said said Drew Brees was a poor QB, nor did I say Orton was a bad

    QB.

  • Bearsfan

    Let orton play with a team around him…… The worst mistake (among many) that the bears made was trading him. He's a class act and a great QB

  • Bearsfan

    Cutlers a snivling, mistake-making whining pussy. You can have him back in trade for orton.

  • nfl jerseys

    He had a storied career at Purdue and was the only Purdue QB to ever take them to 4 consecutive bowl games.

  • nfl jerseys

    He had a storied career at Purdue and was the only Purdue QB to ever take them to 4 consecutive bowl games.