Photos by Kaptain Kirk 8/9/11
Note: This was supposed to post last night, but due to a tired operator, the time was scheduled wrong.
It's a bit foggy on my drive to Training Camp this morning. Actually, at 6,000 feet above sea level we call it a passing cloud. As I get closer to the Mile High City, the mist clears and reveals a clear sky. The thermometer on my rear-view mirror said the temperature was 75o, but it feels like the day will be hot. So with my bug repellent and SPF30 applied, I take up my vigil at the 45 yard line to watch the Broncos practice.
At 8:30 sharp, Tim Tebow takes the field and starts throwing to who ever will play catch with him. Not long after, Adam Weber joins him and they loosen up together. Two JUG's machines are set up to my right at the 30 yard line. The rest of the team makes its way on to the field. HORN.
Two lines of players form left and right, one on each parallel set of numbers (as opposed to the hash marks) and the JUG's machines launch kickoffs at them. There are quite a few players on the receiving end and the interns shoot balls as fast as they are returned. The Defensive Linemen have a more difficult time fielding the kickoffs as Jeremy Beal and Davis Veikune muff their attempts. Having taped up hands undoubtedly makes catching a football tough. Special Teams Coordinator Jeff Rodgers informs the JUG's operators that they no longer require their services and moves his group of players down to the goal line. Assistant ST's coach Keith Burns does the same with the other group on the opposite side of the field. The players line up on the Goal Line close to where it intersects the sideline. Rodgers rolls a simulated loose ball that each player must recover. HORN.
Kyle Orton directs the walk-through of more play installation at the 5 yard line, while Adam Weber, Brady Quinn and Tim Tebow are gathered at midfield. Orton and the starters turn around and practice going out of their own end inside the 5. This drill lasts for about 7 more minutes. HORN.
The ball is placed at the 30 yard line (to my right) and it's time for 11 on 11's with the 1st teams. Knowshon Moreno gets the first carry. The players are working at quarter-speed. Brandon Lloyd shows off with a one-handed grab at the sideline. Tight End Dan Gronkowski lines up wide and Von Miller is sent out to cover him. Cassius Vaughn comes in as the Nickel back. HORN.
Kenny Chesney's "Sweet Summertime" begins to play over the loud speaker as the team lines up at the Goal to start Rich Tuten's Stretch and Flex. Song number two "Summertime" by Will Smith has David Bruton and Robert Ayers dancing to the music. The third song is "Power" by Kanye West. I see Syd'Quan Thompson is back after sitting out yesterday, but I don't see Eddie Royal. I later find out that he was held out to prevent any setbacks to his hip (he had hip surgery earlier this year). I knew that something happened yesterday in 1 on 1 drills when he went up against Champ Bailey. I don't recognize any other absentees. HORN.
The 3 Offensive units run plays and trot 20 yards downfield. They run this three times up and back. HORN. The players separate into their position groups. The quarterbacks work with the Tight Ends, with the exception of Adam Weber who hands off to the Running Backs. The Wide Receivers work with Coach Tyke Tolbert, who jams them at the Line Of Scrimmage. The Defensive Linemen hit the stationary sled and the Offensive Line hits this tackling dummy.
After about 5 minutes, the Tight Ends go their own way and the Quarterbacks join the Wide Receivers. The Running Backs run hurdle drills and the Fullbacks practice lead blocking through the hole on another player with a blocking pad. Now the Running Backs are drilling against the Linebackers in pass protection. This drill morphs into a one on one passing drill RB's vs, LB's with Adam Weber providing the arm. Five more minutes elapse before the next HORN.
11 on 11's break out of the end zone drill. Knowshon Moreno starts the drill with a good run, but then Kyle Orton passes behind Eric Decker and Champ Bailey makes him pay with a "pick six." They try it again and Moreno gets two more carries with mixed results. Tebow and the 2nd team O-Line comes in, but on their first play, there is too much movement on both sides that the play is called dead and they re-huddle. On the next play, Tebow drops the snap. Out goes Tebow, in comes Brady Quinn. Lance Ball is stuffed at the line and then Syd'Quan Thompson intercepts Quinn and returns it for another score for the Defense. The 1st team Offensive Line returns and Quinn completes a pass to Matthew Willis. Tebow and the 2nd team and after consecutive runs by Lance Ball, the HORN blows.
The ball is moved out to the 45 yard line to my left for 7 on 7's. Eddie Royal and Demaryius Thomas join the team after their injury treatment. Orton completes passes to Daniel Fells, Brandon Lloyd and Eric Decker before making a couple of Swing passes to Willis McGahee and Knowshon Moreno. Joe Mays hurts his leg, but walks it off. Tebow passes to Britt Davis and then is picked off by Syd'Quan Thompson. Brady Quinn passes twice to David Anderson. Tebow incomplete to Virgil Green. Quinn hits a wide open D'Andre Goodwin. Adam Weber completes passes to Dan Gronkowski and Eron Riley. HORN.
The players take a 2-minute Water break and then its time for 11 on 11's. Weber, Quinn and Tebow throw 1 on 1's for the Wide Receivers vs. the Cornerbacks. Moreno makes a couple of nice runs and then Willis McGahee gets 15 yards just by making a decision and hitting the hole. LenDale White lumbers for 4 yards and Moreno "Takes it" around the left side for 10 yards. Brady Quinn and Kyle Orton switch places and then LenDale weaves through the line for about 9 yards. Then Lance Ball takes off for a 30 yard TD. I miss some plays because of a picture break. Brandon Minor for no gain. Tebow and Quinn trade places. Jeremiah Johnson has runs of 7 and 4 yards. C.J.Gable gets stuffed at the line and Spencer Larsen plows for 8 yards. HORN.
Time for 2 minute drills. the ball is spotted on the 40 yard line, there is 2:41 on the clock and the Offense has no time outs. Knowshon Moreno loses a yard. I see Eric Decker and Cassius Vaughn jawing back and forth. On the next play, Knowshon turns it upfield instead of going out of bounds. He didn't gain any yards anyway. His next carry loses 4 yards and the Punt team comes out. Coach Rodgers is officiating this segment and calls a delay of game on the punt unit. They back up 5 yards and punt to David Anderson. The ball goes back to the 40 and the 2nd team gets it's chance vs. the 1st Team Defense. Lance Ball for no gain. Tebow rolls to his left and coach whistles that Elvis Dumervil has a Sack. Lance Ball gets 5 yards back, but with 4th and 16, the Punting Unit gets more work. Brady Quinn leads the 2nd team Offense against the 2nd team Defense. Brandon Minor runs three times for 6 yards and the Punt team has to go to work again. Wouldn't you know it? Delay of Game again. Jeff Rodgers is calm about it, but I'm betting they will be working on getting punts away in a timely manner real soon. David Anderson returns the punt 5 yards. HORN.
After another 2 minute water break, it's time for the Special Teams Kick Return unit to perform. They are opposed by the scout team (wearing their red caps). The JUG's machine launches kicks to Eric Decker, Cassius Vaughn, David Anderson, Perrish Cox and Brandon Minor. The drill is for the return team to "drop and read," that is, drop back after the kick is assured not to be an Onside attempt and the turn and read their man and block him. An Onside Kick is called and Richard Quinn recovers it. Coach Burns comes over and "tweaks" his technique. The 1st unit has Matthew Willis, Wesley Woodyard, Deron Mayo, Julius Thomas, David Bruton, Spencer Larsen, Austin Sylvester, Jeremy Beal, Shawn Murphy and Brandon Minor. HORN.
Red Zone 11 on 11's. Orton sideline out to Julius Thomas. On the next play, Orton's pass is high, intended for Daniel Fells, but the Tight End only gets one hand on it and can't bring it in. Orton to Moreno, Spencer Larsen lead blocks for McGahee who gets 8 yards. Kyle passes to Julius Thomas on a ball that is tipped. Orton rolls right and as Brian Dawkins bears down on, Kyle passes back to Daniel Fells who scores. Brady Quinn leads the 2nd unit and passes to Dan Gronkowski for a TD. Quinn to Willis McGahee. After that, Brady make a reverse pass, During Tebow's turn and he responds with a shovel pass to Brandon Minor that gets 7 yards. Tebow eludes the rush and throws a long shovel pass to LenDale White. On the next play, Tebow is pressured by Derek Domino and has to throw it away. HORN.
More 11 on 11's from the 40. A screen play fails because there is no receiver. Kyle hits Decker on a slant for 15 yards. Orton passes to Larsen out of the backfield and Spencer rumbles for 17 yards. McGahee sees daylight in the second level and then Decker drops one that hits him right in the hands. Tebow throws what should be a pick, but Cassius Vaughn tips the pass and Darcel McBath groans like he would have had the interception. Tebow passes to David Anderson for 5 yards. Tebow on a keeper right. After an outstanding fake hand off to LenDale, Tebow bounces a pass to Anderson. LenDale rumbles for 9 yards and then Tebow has to throw the ball away because if pressure. Quinn comes in. 2's vs. 2's. Jeremiah Johnson gets a couple of tough yards and doesn't stop his legs. A screen pass to Minor nets 10 yards and a crossing pattern he gets the ball to D'Andre Goodwin. Brady rolls right and Dante Rosario follows him and makes a good catch. Austin Sylvester gets a carry as the upback and nets 2 yards. Quinn passes too high for Virgil Green. HORN.
Another water break and the Special Teams have another go with the kick coverage unit this time. Matt Prater is 2 for 2 in hitting the crossbar along with an upright as well. HORN.
2 minute drills from the 40 begin, with better results. Kyle passes to Britt Davis for 20 yards and then hits Decker who runs out of bounds after a good gain. After a pass over the middle to Decker they get into the Hurry up mode. Coach Fox calls Offsides Defense. Kyle rolls all the way to the sideline and has to throw the ball away out of the end zone. Orton completes a quick pass to Willis and then finds Julius Thomas for a TD. Tebow runs the 2's vs, the 2's. The first play is a Lance Ball run for 4 yards. Tebow takes off for a 5 yard gain, then finds David Anderson over by the sideline on his 3rd progression. Anderson steps out of bounds to stop the clock. On the next play Tebow throws it to Lance Ball perfectly over the Linebacker. Lance makes a beautiful over the shoulder catch as well. A terrific play. Tebow recovers from a bad snap and gets the ball to Eron Riley, who makes the catch, but Cassius Vaughn hijacks Eron and takes the ball away for the interception. Brady Quinn passes to Goodwin for 16 yards, Mark Dell drops a pass, Goodwin grabs a high pass and gets out of bounds. Then Brady gets 7 or 8 yards and runs out of bounds. Quinn recovers from a bad shotgun snap and swings a pass to Jeremiah Johnson, who gets yardage and out of bounds. Brady leads a wide open Mark Dell too far in the end zone. A quick roll out by Quinn gets him out of bounds. Derek Domino bats down a pass at the line of scrimmage and Quinn makes a nice touch pass to Jeremiah Johnson. HORN.
The Running Backs are on autograph duty today and I manage about 6 more.
Stay tuned for the next chapter tomorrow, and...