Denver Broncos News: Horse Tracks - 2/8/11

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Q&A: Broncos need defense first on road to recovery - The Denver Post
So whether it's Tim Tebow or Kyle Orton or a quarterback to be named later, the Broncos need an accurate, decisive quarterback who does the majority of work in the pocket.

Broncos could learn from the Packers and Steelers how to draft - The Denver Post
The Broncos currently have 24 picks or signed undrafted rookies still on their 53-man roster or injured reserve from the 2004-10 drafts. The Packers have 39. The Steelers have 33. Here's how the Broncos stacked up in the draft with Super Bowl champion Green Bay after Williams was Denver's first pick in 2004:

NFL combine will be big deal for Broncos - The Denver Post
Overall, however, the combine will be the first real chance for the Broncos to dive in and see, and interview, some of the top underclassmen in this draft, especially those on defense. Clemson defensive end Da'Quan Bowers has been invited, as has Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley. Certainly, those two players fit a Broncos need and figure to carry a grade worthy of the Broncos' No. 2 pick.

Memories as Sharpe as His Play " DenverBroncos.com
I remember after we won the first Super Bowl and received the championship rings for Super Bowl XXXII, with no announcement or fanfare of any type Shannon gave his ring to his brother Sterling. Everyone knows how close they were, but many people still do not know Shannon performed that ultimate act. Sterling wears the Super Bowl ring to this day. Months later, after the word spread quietly within the organization, Mike Shanahan just as quietly called Shannon to his office and gave him another ring. I don’t know who paid for it, but it was a very classy gesture.

Denver Broncos open with long odds to win the 2012 Super Bowl | All Things Broncos
For comparison — or to encourage dismissal, if you’re so inclined — last year’s opening odds for this season had Indianapolis a 7-1 favorite overall, followed by the Cowboys at 8-1. Green Bay was 10-1 to win the title. And Pittsburgh had the ninth-best odds at 18-1.

Broncos' Eddie Royal OK and recovering from hip surgery - The Denver Post
Broncos wide receiver Eddie Royal, who caught only two passes during the team's final three games this past season, is recovering from arthroscopic surgery on his hip.

ProFootballWeekly.com - Broncos unlikely to bring Orton back
Broncos executive vice president of football operations John Elway recently said it's not a sure thing that QB Kyle Orton will be traded, but a PFW insider said it would be very tough to bring the veteran back. While QB Tim Tebow may not give the team the best chance to win, he does have the backing of the fans in Denver. Elway has talked about reconnecting with the fans and could lose some credibility by sticking with Orton. A daily team observer said he gets the feeling that fans would rather win three or four games with Tebow than six or seven with Orton.

NFL NEWS: SUPERBOWL

NFL Video - NFL - FOX Sports on MSN
Making of the Lombardi Trophy

Advanced NFL Stats: Super Bowl 45 Analysis
WAIT! Did I just say that missing the FG would be better than making it? Yes, that's exactly what I said, and historically, that's exactly the case. The reason is likely because teams down by 3 play for the FG in that situation, while teams down by 6 are forced to play for the win. Once inside FG range, they pull up and stop taking risks, accepting a long FG attempt that, even if successful, only buys them a tie--0.50 WP.

Cold, Hard Football Facts.com: The mighty pick-six (and other SB notes)
Green Bay suddenly possessed a 14-0 lead, thanks to two scores in the space of 24 seconds. As we noted on Twitter in the immediate aftermath, the game was all but over – statistically speaking – thanks to that single play.

Packers welcomed back to Titletown - JSOnline
Earlier Monday, about 375 people showed up at the stadium by 8 a.m., apparently deciding that the best way to celebrate the Packers' Super Bowl victory was by shoveling snow. Shortly after the Packers beat Pittsburgh, the call went out to fans to shovel out Lambeau Field, clearing tons of snow in advance of Tuesday afternoon's Return to Titletown pep rally.

The Super Bowl Party Is Over, The Labor Hangover Begins - NYTimes.com
Despite another massively successful season with monster television ratings that allowed broadcasters to command $3 million for a 30-second Super Bowl commercial, NFL owners insist their profit margins are being squeezed and that the current business model is no longer sustainable. What became clear during Super Bowl week was that there is much bargaining to be done with drug-testing, a rookie wage scale and a contentious plan to expand the regular season to 18 games all on the negotiating table.

Was the Super Bowl Halftime Show Underrated? - NYTimes.com
Maybe this is a bit of a contrarian view, but are we expecting too much from the Super Bowl halftime show? It has become a national pinata — these guys are dinosaurs, those guys are selling out – and the Black Eyed Peas were merely taking their turn being whacked. Not to suggest that the Peas were brilliant (or have ever been brilliant); some of the vocals were sketchy. But the overall spectacle — with the dancers, the light shows, the guest performances of Slash and Usher, and yes, the Peas, themselves — didn’t seem to deserve condemnation.

Charles Woodson feeling no pain as Packers win Super Bowl XLV - Peter King - SI.com
2. Rashard Mendenhall lost this game more than anyone for Pittsburgh. With his second lost fumble in three games this postseason, Mendenhall showed he's a nice running back but not a great one. On the first play of the fourth quarter, the Steelers looked like they were on the verge of taking the lead for the first time in the game. Down 21-17 with the ball at the Packer 33, Roethlisberger handed the ball to Mendenhall, who looked for a hole off right guard. He found one -- but then got the ball punched out and lost it. Green Bay recovered and scored the clinching touchdown eight plays later. "It just happened and should not have happened,'' he said. Of the loss, Mendenhall said, "We did it to ourselves.''

Super Bowl XLV: Carmakers' ads take buzz crown - ESPN
In the Super Bowl of advertising, Justin Bieber replaced Ozzy Osbourne and Joan Rivers became a GoDaddy girl. But a pair of commercials by automakers took the early trophy for online buzz. A two-minute ad for Chrysler starring Eminem and a Volkswagen ad featuring a mini-Darth Vader that went viral before it even aired were two of the most talked-about spots during advertising's big night, the Super Bowl, in which Green Bay Packers defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers, 31-25.

Cold, Hard Football Facts.com: Pigskin Detention: Super Bowl XLV edition
But for the love of God, why does Fox need a red carpet? This is the Super Bowl, not the Academy Awards. You don’t see Roger Goodell, Drew Brees and Michael Vick showing up on the green carpet at the Oscars. Why does Fox insist on giving Hollywood’s its day at the expense of stories about the Packers and Steelers?

NFL News: Books get crushed by Packers -
After the Super Bowl score and all the propositions were posted, Las Vegas sports books collectively took a beating as the Packers and over the total of 45 came in. It was the only scenario where the books could lose and it happened. The only saving grace for some of the books was a large reserve with future bets cashing in and the ties-lose parlay card paying dividends. In most instances, the books did very well with either side winning on future odds to win the Super Bowl prior to the final results, but it still didn‘t deflect from the massive parlay handle cashing in at 13-to-5 odds.

Las Vegas sports books take a hit on Super Bowl action - latimes.com
No one enjoyed the rollercoaster ride of events as much as Purcell, who shimmied on the Mirage sports book carpet and was doused in beer after realizing these winnings: a lucrative parlay of Packers to the over, a $200 future-book bet made before the season on the 14-to-1 Packers to win the Super Bowl, a $50 bet that Green Bay's Nick Collins would intercept a pass that paid $750, and another longshot gamble that Packers receiver Jordy Nelson would score the game's first touchdown

NFL knew about seating issue last week | ProFootballTalk
"The attendance record was not the goal," Grubman said. "The goal was to use this great building in a way that showcased the NFL, showcased North Texas and showcased the great players we have in the NFL." Again, baloney.

Super Bowl scores huge on TV in Columbus; city had 3rd-highest viewership in U.S. | Business First
Overall, Fox earned a 47.9 overnight Nielsen rating, tying it with the New York Giants and Denver Broncos match-up in 1987 as the best Super Bowl overnight ever, reported SportsBusiness Daily. Nielsen said the game was the most watched TV program in U.S. history, besting last year’s Super Bowl with an average audience of 111 million viewers.

Jerry Jones: Apologizes for seat fiasco; Super Bowl exceeded expectations, bring more to North Texas | Dallas Cowboys News - Sports News for Dallas, Texas - SportsDayDFW
A quick summary: Jones said the Cowboys share the responsibility with the NFL for the seats not being ready but added the game and the stadium exceeded the high level of expectations that the Super Bowl presents. His statement:

Super Bowl ticket fiasco leads to free 2012 seats | Detroit Free Press | freep.com
Goodell said the league will give tickets for next year's Super Bowl to the 400 fans left without a place to sit Sunday. The league already had said it would offer those 400 people refunds of triple the face value of their Steelers-Packers tickets.

Bridgestone Is Tops In Super Bowl Advertising Buzz - NYTimes.com
No longer are polls the object of obsession they once were with chief marketing officers seeking feedback on the millions they forked over for 30 or 60 seconds of Super Bowl commercial time. Twitter and Facebook are replacing them. Rating highly in polls still does not hurt, of course. But social networks can tell CMOs more than the simple thumbs up/thumbs down conclusions of voting, since the ads become the subject of conversations rather than one-word responses.

Displaced Super Bowl Fans Deserved Better - NYTimes.com
"We would have made the call to begin moving those fans and notifying them had we known earlier in the week that we were definitely not going to have them," Grubman said. "But our objective was to accommodate all our fans safely and in comfort and to have them not have to think about anything other than watching that game.

NFL NEWS: GENERAL

ProFootballWeekly.com - Ochocinco using OCNN to give public players' perspective
A quick run of the numbers proves the power of Ochocinco and his fast-fingered typing and tweeting on his Motorola Xoom. The top players on each team in Sunday's Super Bowl with the largest Twitter followings, Steelers S Troy Polamalu with more than 136,000 followers and Packers QB Aaron Rodgers with nearly 119,000 followers, both pale compared to the OCNN's reach. All told, each tweet by Ochocinco and his partners in crime, including Jets CB Darrelle Revis, flashes upon the computer screen of more than 1.6 million followers.

NFL.com news: Cardinals pursuing Steelers assistant Butler for DC vacancy
Monday is the first day the Cardinals can officially approach Butler for permission to interview, and they intend to do just that. Butler is close with Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt from their time together on the Steelers' staff, and their friendship extends beyond football.

Sources: Jon Bon Jovi in talks to buy part of Atlanta Falcons - ESPN
New Jersey rock star Jon Bon Jovi has been in confidential negotiations with Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank in which Bon Jovi would purchase 15 percent of the NFL franchise for $150 million, according to league sources.

Eagles issue statement on Gruden-replacing-Reid rumor | ProFootballTalk
"Early this morning we have received several inquiries regarding rumors regarding Andy Reid and Jon Gruden," reads the team’s statement. "This was simply a rumor and there is no basis to it at all. It is simply not true."

Dallas mayor: Vick’s key to city "not sanctioned by my office" | ProFootballTalk
So what was Dallas Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway thinking when he gave Vick the key to the city? He says he was under the impression that he has the authority to give keys to the city, and he believes Vick has become a good role model.

Ravens dispute claim of increased practice length during playoffs | ProFootballTalk
Given the rancor regarding the decision to fire quarterbacks coach Jim Zorn, which resulted in quarterback Joe Flacco speaking out publicly against the move, it’s fairly clear that a certain amount of dysfunction currently exists within the organization, and dysfunction can manifest itself in all sorts of different ways.

NFL DRAFT

NFL.com Blogs " Blog Archive Mayock: Top five defensive ends "
"Da’Quan Bowers is the guy that everyone is talking about," Mayock told NFL Network. "If you want to take a shot at him, it’s because he’s a one-year wonder. He had 15.5 sacks, and he was a monster. When you put the tape on, he jumps out. He’s a top-five pick, and he could be the first overall pick. The only concern teams have is, ‘Where was he the (previous) two years? Why did his numbers go up so high this year?’ But the bottom line is, when you put the tape on, he’s a top-five pick."

Mayock: As many as nine defensive ends could go in the first | ProFootballTalk
Mayock pinpointed Clemson’s Da’Quan Bowers as the cream of this year’s crop, calling him a "top-five pick" with the potential to go No. 1 overall to the Panthers.

Prince Amukamara plans to do all Combine workouts - CBSSports.com
Despite his reputation, Amukamara has a lot riding on his workout. Questions about his true speed have been rampant ever since Oklahoma State redshirt sophomore Justin Blackmon beat him for five catches, 157 yards and two touchdowns in a showdown between the two stars October 23. See the video here.

NFL LOCKOUT

Solomon: NFL owners should lock out each other instead | Jerome Solomon on Sports | Chron.com - Houston Chronicle
He and Kraft were among the owners who were bothered then that some teams weren't as creative as they were when it came to making money. McNair doesn't feel sorry for smaller-market teams that get the same share of the pie as his Texans, though his team contributes more to it.

Bring on the lockout: NFL has week to forget - NFL - CBSSports.com Football
In the end, which is now when you think about it, this will be remembered as a Super Bowl the game could not save. Frankly, a slightly-better than average game had no chance against the nightmare of the week. In fact, if you get right down to it, maybe a lockout wouldn't be such a bad thing, if only to give the sport time to recover from the disasters perpetrated in its biggest week of the year.

NFL off-season: Now the NFL action moves to the front offices - latimes.com
Tim Tebow: Although he showed some encouraging flashes as a rookie, Tebow has yet to prove he's anywhere close to the first-round investment the Denver Broncos made in him. Now that John Elway is part of the day-to-day running of the franchise, can he help bring along the former Florida star and turn him into a reliable NFL starter?

League continues to walk fine line between building leverage and threatening lockout | ProFootballTalk
Goodell is adroitly dancing on a fine line here. In a lockout, no football business will be transacted until the situation is resolved. The football business that won’t be transacted includes free agency. Reminding the players of that builds leverage. But the league wants to have it both ways, publicly squeezing the players by pointing out that no agreement means no free agency without admitting that no free agency happens only with a lockout.

NFL lockout threat hurts Aaron Rodgers story - OrlandoSentinel.com
Fans and players undoubtedly suffer far worse consequences from a lockout than the owners. And aside from the many variables we could and will dive into over the next few weeks, right now, all I can think about is how the threat of a lockout is yet another slap in the face to the story of Aaron Rodgers.

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