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Potent Quotables - We got all the quarterbacks today...McDaniels, too!

***Transcripts provided by the fine folks with the Denver Broncos P.R. Staff***


Opening Statement

"It was a good day. It's been a really productive week so far (with) a lot of good things we've done in a lot of different areas this week and now we have the holiday weekend off."

On the depth of the secondary

"We've had a lot of people competing in there. (CB) Nate Jones came from Miami, a veteran player who has really done a great job of knowing our system quickly and really clicking well with the other players that he needs to communicate with back there so that's definitely improved from last year and doing a nice job in there. We've got some other young guys to take some reps in there: (CB) Tony Carter, (CB) Syd'Quan Thompson - they're all competing in there, getting a lot of reps and they are really battling hard; we've had both guys in there early in each period and they've gotten an opportunity to work with everybody. I feel like we have an opportunity for it to be a position that we have some depth at this year."

On Broncos WR Brandon Stokley

"He's got a minor deal with the shoulder and just kind of fell on the ground but hopefully he'll be back out there."

On Broncos WR Brandon Lloyd

"I think he's really comfortable with what we're doing. It's his second year here and he missed all of this time last year. He didn't get here until June and to be able to come in and start the offseason like this, knowing the offense, knowing the system... We're moving him around and trying to do some of the things to take advantage of the skill set that he has. He's really responded really well early in passing camp and we would anticipate that to continue. He's a talented player - a very talented player. He's got a lot of skills down the field, made a lot of plays today down the field. He's got good hands, great body control and we're excited about him."

On the progress of the Broncos' second-year players, especially RB Knowshon Moreno

"I think they're just playing. Like the rookies, for example, right now they're out there and their heads are just spinning. When your head is spinning, you can't play football the way you know you can play football because it's hard to just go as fast as you can and play with the speed that you need to pay with to be competitive. Knowshon, Brandon Lloyd and the same thing with (WR) Eddie Royal - It's Eddie's second year now (in the system) and Eddie is doing some good things for us, he's playing in the slot a lot but a lot of those second-year players are really starting to come on and the game has slowed down - you can tell. It makes everybody better because now we have 11 guys out there that can really play at the speed and tempo of the game."

On the skill set needed for a quarterback in his system

"Well, I think the hard work - they have to kind of set the pace. I think they need to be able to handle adversity and help their teammates handle adversity too because there's always somebody that they look to in the huddle when things are going exactly the way you want them to go. Somebody needs to kind of calm the huddle down and have some poise and confidence that we're going to get things kind of righted and we hope that all of our quarterbacks possess those kinds of traits and skills but in general there are a lot of things that go into making a really productive, successful quarterback. The things he does on the field the things he does off the field, the time he spends in the meeting rooms, how much can he help his teammates - because inevitably that's going to happen multiple times in a game and he needs to be able to do that. We're pushing all of them to try to get to that point."

On a timetable for a decision by free-agent RB Brian Westbrook

"I have no update on that."

On Broncos LB Baraka Atkins

"He's another guy that will be making that conversion from having his hand down most of the time where he's used to playing to standing up now but he's got the size that you're looking for. A lot of the outside linebackers - their best traits are going to show up in August because they're big (and) they're physical. Most of our guys are 255 (lbs.) or above and he's one of those guys. He'll be able to impact us in the running game on the edge and we don't ask him to do that much in coverage. He's learning how to play, he's kind of like (LB) Jarvis (Moss) and (LB) Elvis (Dumervil) and (LB) Robert (Ayers) were last year where they were kind of in that first stage in learning how to stand up and do some of those different things and adjust going from the defensive end to the linebacker position. He's got a long way to go but he's working his butt off to try to get there."

On Broncos OL J.D. Walton

 "We're mixing him in and out; he and (OL) Dustin (Fry) are going in and out in terms of starting a period and not starting a period and I think J.D. started a lot of them today. I think every day is more comfortable for him in terms of communicating with the guards and understanding the cadence. He's not afraid to take charge at all - we like his confidence. He'll stand up and he'll make sure that we're all set before the ball is snapped and that's a good thing. That has a calming influence on the rest of the guys. He's one of those guys that hopefully one of his best traits will show up in August too. He's a physical player and plays hard and finishes a lot of plays and this work has been invaluable for him in terms of getting in there and having an opportunity to work at a high speed, high tempo against a defense that is doing a lot of different things.

On whether he would be comfortable starting a rookie at center

"If he's the best player, sure - no question."

On Broncos OL Zane Beadles

"Yeah, Zane, because of the situation we have, he's been thrust into the fire and there have been some bad plays - and I think the same is true for all the linemen but there have been a lot of good ones too. I think that right now, getting the work against different looks - some of the things they're seeing, if they can handle some of this stuff, that's probably as hard as it's going to get at times. To be able to communicate, function and learn now for nine, 10 practices and we've got another nine to go. I think by the time we're done in the middle of June with OTAs they will have come a long way. Zane, (OL) Eric Olsen, J.D. (Walton) - there are a lot of young guys who are playing in our system for the first time but they're responding very well."

On Broncos OL Ryan Harris

"(He's) good. We're hopeful - and I don't want to say an exact day or date - but hopefully (we will) see him out there soon. He's doing well and we're excited about getting him back out and I know he is too."  

On being worried about re-aggravating foot injuries

"Yeah, we've got a lot of them right now: (WR) Demaryius (Thomas), Ryan Harris, (WR) Eric (Decker), so we're going to be careful. At this point we're going to err on the side of being real careful and not put them in a situation where (it's) the last day of minicamp on June 13th and all of the sudden we have a foot injury. If there' a guy who is borderline ready and not ready, we're not going to push it and really we've told all the players August is the time we want you to be ready to go. If they are ready I think we'll be excited to see them out there. They're all taking a bunch of mental reps. They're all in the film session and they're all seeing the things were doing and getting all the information but hopefully everybody will be ready by August."

On the jerseys that the offense wears while simulating the defense

"We go against each other in some of these (drills) where we're trying to simulate some pressure looks and do some of those things. It's not a physical drill; it's a recognition and an assignment drill. What we're doing there is that we've made some mistakes on both sides of the ball. Yesterday we made some errors, today we came out and I wanted to give them the same look that they had yesterday. Unless you tell them all, ‘He's No. 20 - which would be (S Brian) Dawkins and he's No. 55 (LB D.J. Williams),' we have a bunch of big linemen over there who don't look much like Dawkins and D.J. Williams so we've got to try to tell them who the linebackers are, who the secondary players are and who the linemen are so that we have an opportunity to actually go through the period and make some progress. We're not trying to cheat anybody out of anything or get ahead of the defense - we're just trying to compete."

On the quarterbacks' rotations

"Kyle (Orton) is definitely getting the most - and he deserves to, there is no question about that. Brady (Quinn) goes in there next but we've been flopping them all. The only thing that is really consistent is that Kyle is in the first huddle. Other than that, yesterday was different than today and Tuesday wasn't the same either. Some of that is they need to get work with different players in the huddle. We're trying to make sure they don't take all their reps with the same two receivers or the same center. In order to do that, there are a lot of coaches who are moving those pieces around too so that they can work with a different quarterback. (Quinn) usually goes in there second and he's progressing as they all are but we've got a long way to go."




On sharing reps with three other quarterbacks

"It's just one more guy than last year. It's not that big of a deal to me. I'm still trying to get better working on myself and taking mental reps. When I get the reps with the rest of the team, I want to do it the best that I can. The four of us are working together, trying to get better. And if we're getting better then we're helping this team get better as well."

On if he feels like he is getting better

"I do feel like I'm getting better. Obviously you're never satisfied with where you're at. I want to get better every day, and if I'm doing that, if I can just get better and better every day, I'll be content. But until I'm on the field playing, I'm not going to be happy. I want to keep proving myself."

On the other three quarterbacks getting more attention from the media

"That's the way it goes in this league. It doesn't really matter about all that stuff. The best guy is going to be on the field at any position. That's my mindset. If I can control what I can control and make myself better, then the rest of it will take care of itself."

On whether Broncos Head Coach Josh McDaniels talked to him before practice about the distribution of repetitions

"No, he doesn't really give us too much insight, it's basically they have their own order and we don't really know who's going beforehand. The order doesn't matter to me. The reps that I get, I need to make them count and that goes for every guy on the team."

On his reaction to complimentary comments about him made by other Broncos players

"Well, that's obviously flattering but until I prove myself on the field day-in and day-out... the coaches have the ultimate say still and I trust in their judgment and that's a great thing to hear but at the same time, Josh (McDaniels) is the one who knows best and he'll put the best guy on the field."

On how he feels he's improved from last year

"Most of it is just learning this offense and just sitting down with Josh. There are so many ins and outs of knowing the play and knowing where your guys are and you've got to know what the defense does. I'm learning so much about football and I feel like I'm basically cheating and getting to know the defense and know what I'm getting before it even happens so I think that's the biggest key learning from Josh and learning from the other coaches."

On whether he's discussed his status with Broncos Head Coach Josh McDaniels

"I have not and in all honesty, this is the National Football League and from what I've learned, you just go in there and do your job. You don't really ask questions, you just do what you're going to be told to do and try to get better and leave the rest up to the coach and it will take care of itself."  




On what the rookies are going through right now

"I don't think they're going through too much right now. I think it's real light but it'll pick up in a couple of weeks."

On pressure that the rookies are dealing with

"It's a little bit of pressure, it's something new. You're around new people, new system - you've really got to hit that book and learn as fast as you can because it's all going so fast."

On his goals for this season

"I don't know. I think if I can work hard, those things will come to me."

On whether he was happy with his rookie season

"Yeah, I think I did well. I was healthy and that's one thing and I helped my team when I was out there but at the same time, I think this year will be a little better."

On whether he felt like he hit a wall last season

"I felt really good and going into those last couple of weeks, I still felt really good."

On the lack of big plays in running game last season

"You really can't plan for it. That was last year and it's a new slate now. Let's just start something new and get better."


On passing camp so far

"I think just as an offense as a whole, we're doing well at all the new things, things that we've maybe made a mistake early on in camp and everything. We're taking all the corrections to the field. Really just doing a good job as a unit of hopefully not making those mistakes twice, which is really all you need in passing camp."

On playing against the defense

"Our defense does a lot of stuff, now, so it's great for the offense. It really makes you go by your rules of the system. It's not like we're really game-planning our defense, so it makes it that much tougher to really see what you see, direct traffic and try to get all 11 guys doing the same thing. But we've done a great job of it so far."

On making mistakes against the Broncos defense rather than an opponent

"That stuff happens in passing camp. It's tough to throw play-action passes when you don't run the ball very much in passing camp, obviously, without any pads. But we've got a good defense. They really make us do our best and if we do, we've done well."

On whether there is pressure on him with three quarterbacks behind him

"I'd say there's just more pressure on me because we didn't make the playoffs last year, and that's our goal - to make the playoffs. 8-8 is not good enough, so obviously everyone's got to get better, myself included."

On if he feels like the leader of the team

"I hope so. It's just nice being around the guys for a second year. They know what I'm all about. They know that I might not be the loudest guy or anything, but certainly with my effort and with my work, I'm going to give them everything that I have, and hopefully that's something that they see."

On if he takes pride in being a leader

"No question. You always want the respect of your peers."

On CB Champ Bailey saying he has faith in Orton

"It means a lot. Champ is the face of this franchise, for sure. It means a lot from him. I want the respect of all the vets. They know this league, they've been around it for a long time and I think they know what I bring to the table and what I can do. That's always great to hear."

On Brandon Lloyd

"Brandon's had a great camp. Really all the receivers were really coming together. This is my third year with Brandon, so we've got some good timing and a good rapport built up. He's a guy that didn't get a big chance last year, but when he did, those three games he came in he played really well for us. Hopefully he'll continue to build on that."

On if he likes WR Eddie Royal in the slot receiver position

"I like Eddie all over the place. Eddie's a unique receiver. Some guys are built for the slot, some guys are built for outside, and Eddie can really move around and do a lot of different things. I know Eddie does want to be a great slot receiver, he really does, and we talk about it every day. He's working on that and he's going to get there."

On Royal learning several receiver positions

"I think for the receivers last year, it was enough to learn one spot, and we asked Eddie to learn a lot of different spots. I think sometimes that might have slowed him down a little bit, just thinking about everything so much. Now I think, like everybody, he's taking that next step. He's comfortable in all the positions and he's not really thinking as much and just going out there and being the athlete that he is."

On if he is anxious to work with rookie wide receivers Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker

"Yeah. Like all rookies, they've got a long way to go and they need to get on the field as much as possible."

On how much rookies miss when they're not on the field for OTAs

"These OTAs are certainly big for rookies. It's a chance to really run the same plays over and over and over again. For the vets, been there and done that, but for the rookies this is a prime chance to get those reps."


On how much progress he has made throughout passing camp

"I think I've made a lot of progress. Obviously we've put in a good amount of our offense, I'm sure, and we still have a long way to go. But right now just trying to get into everything and know it like the back of my hand."

On the biggest transition coming to Denver

"The people here are great. Honestly, everyone has been very open and welcoming. So that hasn't been a problem. I think the biggest thing is probably the playbook. Getting down those nuances here and there. When you get here March 15, you don't have a season under your belt in this offense."

On Denver's playbook versus what he has done in the past

"There are definitely a lot of similarities to some things I've done before. There's definitely some crossover, but some new things as well. You've just got to re-train your brain, like learning a new language."

On having a similar offense at Notre Dame

"I think it helps a ton. Going through the same procedures and protocols - granted it was a little while ago - but doing that before brings a lot of familiarity and it makes you feel more comfortable in there."

On if the terminology is similar

"There's definitely some crossover in terminology, but again, that was a separate offense. This is its own separate offense and entity. Again, there's crossover, but nothing's going to be the exact same."

On working with QB Kyle Orton

"It's been good. He's very professional. He's a really good guy. Fun to talk to about things. I've had a good time with him."

On if he feels the competition is just between him and Orton

"Really I feel like it's just kind of every guy trying to get better. Really as a team, too. There are some things we're trying to work on. We kind of felt like the defense got us a little bit Tuesday, but I think the past two days we've come back as an offense and done better."

On having more reps

"I think it's helping our team more than anything else."



On how he feels after another week of practice

"I'm feeling good. It's great, it's great to be out here and just constantly learning more and more every day and trying to get better."

On the biggest challenges to him so far

"You've got to know what you're doing, you've got to get in the playbook, got to be studying and know the offense, know the defense and be able to play extremely fast."

On the speed of the game

"I don't know if it's moving faster than I anticipated, but I know it's moving fast. You've got to play fast, you've got to think fast and you've got to make your reads extremely quickly. That's one of the biggest things for me is just constantly knowing what we're doing, what we're trying to get the defense to do and how we manipulate them and everything like that and it's just processing that information extremely quickly."

On the quarterbacks' rotations

"Honestly, I don't even know. I just go in when they tell me to go in and try to do the best I can."

On if there have been any surprises

"No, I don't think so. I knew it was going to be tough and I just have to come out here with a great attitude and do what they tell me and that's how I'm going about it."

On whether the hardest part about being a rookie is adjusting to the new offense

"Oh definitely. I think that's the hardest part about being a rookie is your thinking. You're constantly thinking, ‘What am I doing here? What if they do this? How do I do this?' So, it's studying so much that all that becomes second nature where you can just go out there and play and play fast and you don't have to think because if you think, then you're already behind."

On whether that can only come with experience

"I think that is going to come with studying, with reps, with walking through practices. It's just going to take time and effort."

On whether he's had more ‘Aha' or frustrating moments so far

"There are some ‘Aha!' moments and some moments where you wish you did something else and know that you should have done something else. It's just constantly a learning curve that I'm just trying to get over right now."

On whether he feels like he is improving over time

"It's definitely every day getting more comfortable. You're understanding it and it's not even versus the base look - it's versus the more complicated looks and those are the ones that you really have to get nailed down and those are the things that I'm really trying to work on now and get those sealed up."

On his critique of his performance so far

"I don't know. I just know that I'm working hard every day trying to get better and just with a great group of guys."

On whether he has a specific focus to work on for each day

"Yeah, there are a lot of things. It's hard to narrow it down with all the things that I'm working on but every day there is something different: ‘What am I doing to do with my hands today? How am I going to make this cadence? I'm going to quicken this up, make this longer, I.D. different fronts.' There are always things that I want to get done every day.

On what he focused on today

"It was more about the defense today and there were different alerts that were going in from protection to protection so it was really understanding the red zone of it and being able to go in and out of protections."

On what he is working on in terms of his mechanics

"We're working on different things - drops, footwork, play-action drops and different things like that."

On whether he's working on anything that he's never worked on before

"I guess that there's stuff I haven't really done before in some of the drops and some of the footwork and some of the body-position stuff that I really haven't done so yeah, I am doing some new things."

On what he is working on during his warm-up drills

 "Just keeping that front arm down and not raising that shoulder up too much - keeping those shoulders nice and level."

On whether he's noticed an increase in the speed of the game at practice

"I think you can notice the speed - it's not necessarily how fast guys are because they don't necessarily get faster, but what they do get is a lot quicker as far as their thinking and there are guys jumping in and out of coverages and so I think that's where the game speeds up for you because they look like they're going a lot faster when they're in and out of all those coverages and that's really what I was talking about playing fast and knowing everything so that you can process that information quickly."

On Broncos CB Champ Bailey's compliments about his arm strength

"You know, any compliment that Champ Bailey gives me is a huge deal for me - that's a blessing for me. I'll have to go thank him and pay him when I go inside (laughing)."

On his relationship with former college rival and current Broncos RB Knowshon Moreno

"Oh, we've been great out here. We've been talking and it's been great."