The Tebow experiment is working. The FO were more than likely expecting Tebow's flaws to silence the fans with their granting him the starting role, Elway could get his man come April 2012. Only that's not quite how it happened. At 6-1 as a starter, even the most avid Tebow fan couldn't have expected the success that we've had since a slow start. It's obvious to all of us that an emerging defense, and great special teams play have contributed massively to our current situation, but Tebow has surely now done enough to be next season's starter.
But what about the other two spots at QB?
First we'll take a look at our current group, before assessing the options the Broncos have going forward in to 2012.
After the initial excitement of being traded to the Broncos, Brady Quinn has has an unfortunate time in Denver. Soon after the Broncos acquired Quinn, they went ahead and drafted another young quarterback. Despite outperforming his new teammate in training camp, for two consecutive years, Quinn has lost out on the starting role twice to Tim Tebow. Orton's 'injury' had Studesville decide that it was time to trail Tebow, and a 1-4 record (and the fan and media barrage) eventually forced Elway and Fox to pull the trigger on Tebow again this year.
In truth Quinn would likely have been selected above Tebow as starter, but the organisation needed to know exactly who Tebow was before looking elsewhere in 2012. Improved or not, the front office at least had some idea of who Brady Quinn was, he had after all auditioned before.
Quinn's contract is up this year, and it's clear that if he stays in Denver (assuming he is still wanted) then he'll at best be number 2 on the depth chart. Quinn joined Denver with the hopes of competing, and perhaps unfairly, circumstance never really gave him a chance. The question is could he challenge for a starting role anywhere else? With so many big name QBs in this years draft, not many teams are going to give another chance to a QB that hasn't started in almost three seasons.
Circumstance might yet favour Brady Quinn. Tebow's 'apparent' susceptibility to injury (given his game style) might actually mean that Denver is one of the better teams at which to play backup QB. So two decisions need to be made. One by Brady Quinn, and one by Denver. Does Quinn accept his role of backup? Does he have a choice? Denver's decision depends on how much they are really buying in to Tim Tebow, but more on that later.
I've seen next to nothing from Adam Weber, so am not really in a position to comment on him as a player (aside from that one 89 yard score to Eron Riley). Adam Weber's future in Denver may rely on what happens with Brady Quinn, whether the Broncos look to add a veteran at backup, or whether they draft another QB etc.
The team will likely keep Weber on the practice squad if possible. It could be part of the reason Weber was not promoted to roster following Orton's release, they may have risked losing Weber through waivers if they were forced to cut him from the 53 man team.
The question as to what Denver do in the future relies largely on just how much they are buying into Tebow. Given Tebow's unique ability, and Denver's recent adoption of the option, it might be logical to look for a QB of a similar mould (or as similar as you can be to Tim Tebow). Robert Griffin perhaps would be the perfect candidate, but I think I speak for almost everyone when I say that taking a QB with the 1st pick would be a mistake, and if the Broncos did, it would be someone far more conventional.
Other candidates though might be found in the lower rounds of the draft, especially considering that most teams are searching for a more pro-style player. It's a little too early to be getting in to mock drafts just yet, especially when we're in the playoff hunt, but this is an option the broncos could take if they decide to keep playing out a more unorthodox offense.
Of course as Tebow continues to grow he might better fit more conventional systems, In Minnesota he looked every bit a starting NFL quarterback. I'm of the opinion that it is still important to let Tebow be the dual threat that he is, but adhering to a more pro style offense would give Denver more options in the draft.
Unless of course Denver look instead to a veteran QB to join the roster. Given the young ages of our current QB trio, it's hardly inconceivable to think that we might look to add some experience over the offseason.
So what do you think we'll be looking at next year?