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MHR's Denver Broncos Mailbag: 2/21/2011

So, what had started out as the Monday Morning Kicker will now be known as the MHR Mailbag, that is until I decide to change it up again. If you have any questions you want answered in the mailbag, you can e-mail me at 

Otherwise, let's not waste any time and jump right in!

"Sayre, If the NFL has a lockout this year and doesn't come to an agreement until next march, what happens with next year's draft order?  Would the Broncos get the #2 draft spot again?  Thanks."


Thanks for the e-mail, Patrick. If there is no NFL season this year whatsoever, and a deal is not done before the 2012 NFL Draft, then the draft order would indeed stay the same. Because there would be no football, there would really be no fair way to change up the draft unless you did a lottery that had some formula implemented where a team's record over, say, the last three years was taken into consideration and randomized that way.

However, if there would be no season this year, there would be no change in the 2012 NFL Draft order.

"I heard that there won't be any FA or trading because of the CBA situation, so does that mean Orton will be our starter again?" 

Bob T., Jacksonville 

Thanks for the note, Bob. First things first--you are correct in saying there will be no free agency or trading if there is no new CBA before the draft, or even after the draft for that matter. Does that mean Kyle Orton will be the starting quarterback for 2011? Not necessarily, but it also doesn't mean that he won't.

The major issue at hand here is the fact that Orton, who has two years in the system and has proven to be a good game manager at the NFL level has an edge over Tim Tebow right now in that regard. He has more experience, and if John Fox plans on playing it safe, Tebow might find himself on the bench to start the season.

If Fox decides to go the aggressive route, he will likely try and trade Orton if they are able to, because $9 million dollars is a lot of money to spend on an insurance player. 

Neither Orton or Tebow is guaranteed anything. John Elway recently stated that if the season started today, that Orton would be the starter. Essentially what he's saying is that Tebow has not had enough time to adapt to the NFL game yet, and they want to bring him along more slowly. Fox and Elway and everyone who has ever heard Tebow speak rave about his intangibles and his drive to win ball games. For a team that is rebuilding, it's hard to imagine such a conservative approach, but I would understand it if Orton was the opening day starter if there were no offseason workouts. Orton would definitely have an unfair advantage over the other QB's if they are sticking to a similar offense, but really everyone would suffer if this were the case.

This is why signing a new CBA is so important. Not so we can figure out who is going to be taking the snaps, but so that quarterback can actually use the team facilities to work out with his center, receivers, and offensive line. 

"Sayre, question.... Does NASCAR's recent news of moving back the start of the 2012 Daytona 500 signify a move to an 18 game schedule?"

Ricky B., Nashville

This is an interesting theory, Ricky, but I don't know how much weight it holds.

NASCAR certainly doesn't want to lose any revenue to the NFL. There have been conspirators out there who think the move for NASCAR is symbolic of an impending 18-game schedule change for the NFL, but it's likely just that--a conspiracy. 

NASCAR must be prepared if the NFL does decide to go with 18 games because it would conflict with arguably their biggest race of the year, the Daytona 500. I do not think it will be an issue, however, and if the NFL does decide to move to an 18 game schedule, this is a good move for NASCAR anyway. Either way, fans will get to see their favorite driver turn left, and the Super Bowl will be again seen by millions.

I don't think there's anything to worry about here.

"Sayre, when is the next MHR interactive mock draft going to be? Those are always fun!"

Skotty and Patrick

Funny you should ask, guys. The next interactive mock draft is set to get going this Sunday, and our own Jeremy Bolander is going to have more information on that. I will be playing the role of co-commissioner, so stay tuned for more information on that, it is sure to be extremely entertaining!

"Would the Broncos really take Da'Quan Bowers if he were there with the second overall pick? I really think Robert Ayers needs to have a chance in the 4-3 before they spend another high pick on a DE."


This is also a very good question, and one that I have also wrestled with. The big thing with taking Da'Quan Bowers has been for me, and will continue to be, that I don't agree with two things:

1. I don't agree with the comparisons to Julius Peppers at all
2. I want to see Ayers in a 4-3

Sure, Ayers has less sacks in the NFL than letters in his last name, and yes, he's had some injuries. I would still love to see what he can do in his natural position, which is left defensive end in a 4-3 alignment. 

Wes Bunting recently reported that he has "heard" the Broncos are leaning towards Bowers at the moment, so let's say for a second that he is the pick. The great thing about Bowers right now is his versatility. He played four or five different positions at Clemson (RDE, LDE, RDT, LDT primarily) and has experience standing up. Furthermore, his 15.5 sacks in 2010 came while he played with a partially torn meniscus and had to deal with the death of his father as well as his mentor Gaines Adams.

It has been a tough 12 months for Bowers, and it's admirable the way he's played. I would love to see him stick with the color orange as he moves to the NFL, but is he the right pick right now?

If the Broncos want a pass rush specialist, how about trying to trade down and picking up Von Miller from Texas A&M? Miller has been a consistently dominant pass rusher for a couple of years now, and he would play outside linebacker for the Broncos on the first two downs, and on third down stick his hand in the ground and rush the passer, letting Ayers kick inside and use his great bull rush.

The Broncos have a bunch of options with the 2nd overall pick, but they need to get this one right. I think Miller has the potential to be a starter for a decade and a Pro Bowl player at that. He is more intriguing by the day.

Well, that does it for this week's installment of the MHR mailbag. Again, if you have any questions you want answered, feel free to shoot me an e-mail. Look forward to hearing from you!