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Shanahan Addresses The Media, Answers A Few Questions

Mike Shanahan has a policy.  He'll talk with the media at the end of the season, then not again until the Owner's Meetings in the spring.  Alot can happen during that time, of course, which means these meetings are chock full of information.  This meet and greet with the media was no different, with Shanny at long last answering some of the questions bothering Broncos fans everywhere --

* Wide receiver Brandon Marshall, who suffered a severe gash on his forearm, will be "ready to go" for training camp if the doctors projections hold true in his recovery from surgery.

* D.J. Williams will move back to weak-side linebacker, a position he played in 2005, his first year as a starter. Williams had played middle linebacker this past season.

"I thought D.J. was a more natural (weak-side) linebacker," Shanahan said.

  • Free-agent signee Niko Koutouvides will line up in the middle when the team begins on-field work and free-agent Boss Bailey will play the strong side.
  • The firing of general manager Ted Sundquist was "a very tough decision," but it was one Shanahan believed was necessary for the team to shake itself out of two consecutive seasons without a playoff appearance.
  • Free-agent signee Keary Colbert is projected to be a starter in the offense, alongside Marshall. Shanahan compared Colbert to Ed McCaffrey in that McCaffrey's career didn't fully take off until he joined the Broncos.
"I like the type of person he is, you could see the way he played in the running game and the passing game, that's what we look for in a player," Shanahan said.

* The San Diego Chargers are still the class of the AFC West until proven otherwise.

"Personnel wise, I'd say they're probably ranked No. 1 in the National Football League, I think a lot of them, they're a pretty good football team," Shanahan said.

* If the team lined up today to play a game, the offensive line would be Tom Nalen at center, Ben Hamilton and Montrae Holland at left and right guards, respectively, Chris Kuper at left tackle and Erik Pears at right.

"It will depend on how we go through (offseason workouts), but Kuper would probably get the nod over (Ryan) Harris because of how he played last year," Shanahan said.

A few things stand out to me....

When Shanny makes a decision, he certainly doesn't beat around the bush.  The D.J. Williams debate has been a hot topic here, and everywhere this off-season.  When Shanny, at long last, answered the question, he did so with barely a blink.  It was the thought of many here, me included, that D.J. is just a better football player at WILL and it is a credit to his freakish athleticism that he performed as well as he did last year.  This move makes the Broncos a better defense and football team.

For all those who don't think Ted Sundquist wasn't the fall guy for the team's recent failures, well, think again.  "a tough decision, but one that was necessary for the team to shake itself out of two consecutive seasons without a playoff appearance"?  Translation -- "Hey Ted, we aren't going to do things your way anymore.  Your way has led us to 2 straight disappointing seasons and countless draft failures.  Now, get out!"

The O-Line configuration, with Chris Kuper lining up at Left Tackle if the season started today.  Maybe OL is a First Round priority for the Broncos....

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