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Horse Tracks - 3/12/10 - Changes Continue for Broncos


You have to hand it Josh McDaniels and Brian Xanders - they are not messing around.  The Broncos gave up 558 yards on the ground to the Oakland Raiders and Kansas City Chiefs in back-to-back home games.  It was largely overshadowed in the media and by the fans because of the focus that we always place on the offense - and the weekly drama.  It wasn't unnoticed by the decision makers at Dove Valley.  The Broncos have revamped the defensive line.  Now they are starting to focus on the linebackers with the release of Andra Davis.  What does this mean?  We'll talk a little bit about that later - until then, enjoy some Tracks!

Driven To Improve -
Since Head Coach Josh McDaniels got into coaching, he hasn't experienced a losing season. He hadn't even been a part of a .500 year, as he accumulated a 121-36 record heading into his first season as a head coach.

Willie Clark guilty of killing Bronco Darrent Williams - The Denver Post
The courtroom was silent as the jury filed in, heads bowed. None of the 12 made eye contact with Willie D. Clark at the defense table. One juror began to cry. Then another.

Krieger: "A start" to ending gang killings - The Denver Post
For three weeks, she sat stoically in a Denver courtroom, still waiting. During the prosecution's closing argument, they put up the awful postmortem close -up of a bullet jacket in her son's neck. She maintained, still waiting.

Littwin: Clark verdict elucidates, frustrates - The Denver Post
What was perhaps most disturbing about the Willie Clark trial — other than the murder itself — was the familiarity of it all.

Gang culture "too huge" to make this turning point - The Denver Post
The guilty verdict against reputed Tre Tre Crips member Willie Clark is unlikely to resonate with gang members, according to experts.

Memories of D-Will held dear - The Denver Post
The verdict is in, closure still awaits and the memories remain.

Foxworth not celebrating another wasted young life | All Things Broncos
Among Broncos during Darrent Williams’ two seasons with the team in 2005-06, his closest friend was Domonique Foxworth. They were both cornerbacks, drafted in the same 2005 class (Williams in second round; Foxworth in third).

Asbestos does in Merlin Olsen | All Things Broncos
I remember a time in my life when during a rare deep-thought moment, I thought to myself that Merlin Olsen had the greatest, most-charmed life ever. For him to get taken down, way too early at the age of 69, essentially by overexposure to asbestos, well, it’s just strange how the world works.

Woody's Mailbag: Elway not tight with Coach McD - The Denver Post
Woody, I love the column. I was wondering if John Elway has made any comments about the Josh McDaniels/Kyle Orton situation that you can print? He seems far too loyal to say anything of substance, but I figured I'd take a shot anyway.

Broncos release LB Andra Davis - The Denver Post
In what may be the Broncos' most stunning transaction of the offseason, the team released inside linebacker Andra Davis.

Cleveland Browns sign Ben Watson to 3-year deal, source says - ESPN
After spending much of Thursday negotiating with the Seahawks and Browns, free-agent tight end Ben Watson opted to accept Cleveland's offer, a league source tells ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

LaDainian Tomlinson meets with Minnesota Vikings, still visiting New York Jets - ESPN
The Minnesota Vikings wined and dined LaDainian Tomlinson on Wednesday night, then spent much of Thursday meeting with the star running back in hopes of pairing him with Adrian Peterson in what would be a big-name backfield.

NFL panel finds injuries more likely on new turf - ESPN
An NFL panel found that certain serious knee and ankle injuries happen more often in games played on the most popular brand of artificial turf than on grass.

Emmitt Smith tweets that Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones will be his Hall of Fame presenter - ESPN Dallas
Emmitt Smith announced Thursday night on Twitter that Dallas Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones accepted his request to present him at his Pro Football Hall of Fame induction this summer.

Dan Snyder supports Washington Redskins' new offseason plan - ESPN
Dan Snyder's early verdict on Mike Shanahan and Bruce Allen: "Great guys. Lucky to have 'em."

Strong Pro Day workouts | National Football Post
Some below-the-radar NFL draft prospects turned in some impressive Pro Day workouts.

Behind the stats: QB completion percentage | National Football Post
One of the toughest evaluations an NFL team and scouting department can make is assessing and ranking a draft’s quarterback class. With more and more money being invested in the position every year, it’s becoming critical for a franchise to make the right decision regarding its quarterback. The St. Louis Rams currently find themselves debating whether to take a quarterback with the first overall pick and play the risk/reward game or choose a safer prospect with less potential future impact.

Source: Hadnot agrees to $9 million deal with Cards | National Football Post
Veteran free agent offensive lineman Rex Hadnot has agreed to a three-year, $9 million deal with the Arizona Cardinals, a league source with knowledge of the situation confirmed.

Blount set to work out on March 18 | National Football Post
Oregon running back LeGarrette Blount will work out at the Ducks' March 18 Pro Day workout, according to a league source.

Brodney Pool is a Jet | National Football Post
Veteran safety Brodney Pool has reportedly agreed to terms with the New York Jets

Raiders reportedly interested in T.O. | National Football Post
The Oakland Raiders are interested in veteran free agent wide receiver Terrell Owens, according to John Clayton of ESPN.

Source: Nolan Carroll to work out for Patriots, Browns | National Football Post
University of Maryland cornerback Nolan Carroll will conduct private workouts with the New England Patriots and the Cleveland Browns, according to a league source.

Browns target Delhomme | National Football Post
Jake Delhomme is visiting the Browns today, and a source close to the situation has told me the Browns "want him bad." In the event the Browns do sign him – which I think will happen – it will be another windfall for Delhomme. Unlike the contract discussed here Wednesday with the Eagles and Michael Vick, Delhomme has no offset in his Panthers contract. He’ll receive the entire amount owed by the Panthers ($12.68 million), no matter what he might receive from the Browns (more on that below).

Using trades to get stronger | National Football Post
Along with an active free agent period, we have begun seeing that without cap consequences from the acceleration of signing bonuses, teams can trade fairly freely now. The first weekend of free agency also saw a number of trades, and we’ll see even more. Teams covered by the Final Eight plan and limited in signing free agents will use trades to fill needs. Teams will continue to swap headaches, attempting to give talented but difficult players fresh starts in new locations.

Veteran LBs Porter, Foote like Cardinals; QB Anderson to visit Friday
The Arizona Cardinals welcomed free-agent linebackers Joey Porter and Larry Foote for visits Thursday, and both expressed a desire to join the team after seeing some familiar faces.

In search of 3-4 help, Redskins eye trade for Rams DL Carriker
The Washington Redskins are interested in acquiring defensive lineman Adam Carriker from the St. Louis Rams and have contacted the team about the possibility, league sources said Thursday

Warren becomes fourth veteran cut by Raiders this offseason
The Oakland Raiders released defensive tackle Gerard Warren on Thursday, letting go of yet another veteran this offseason.

5 burning questions: Cal's Best has most potential to be next CJ2K
As we inch closer to the 2010 NFL Draft, scouts are starting to uncover answers to the hard questions that will ultimately shape what happens when teams are officially on the clock.

Latest Roethlisberger allegations give Rooneys cause for concern
Regardless of the outcome of the latest sexual assault allegations to surface against Ben Roethlisberger, the franchise quarterback's standing and reputation in the public domain is already under scrutiny, and the Steelers organization has been rocked by the scandal.

Pro day workout schedules and analysis
In between the combine and the draft, NFL coaches and personnel -- not to mention the prospects themselves -- turn their attention to the various college "pro day" workouts. These are not as all-encompassing as the combine, but they are important enough for the key decision-makers in the league to travel around the country for more than a month to see the talent up close and personal.'s Gil Brandt will have sources at each of these workouts and will update his pro day scouting reports on a daily basis.