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Denver Broncos News: Horse Tracks - 5/22/12


Peyton Manning directs first Broncos practice at Denver OTA - The Denver Post
Under the gaze of the legendary John Elway and upwards of 60 media members, Peyton Manning completed his first day of minicamp with the Denver Broncos without a hitch.

Manning 'Picking Up Right Where He Left Off'
The focus was on quarterback Peyton Manning as OTAs kicked off Monday, and the Broncos came away impressed.

Broncos coach John Fox's F-15 flight grounded - First-and-Orange
The Broncos head coach spent Monday afternoon at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs preparing to fly in an F-16 jet with the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, but the flight has been grounded because of mechanical issues with the jet.

Bailey: Broncos WRs showing improvement | First-and-Orange
Monday’s Organized Team Activity marked the first time the Broncos’ defense has been allowed to line up against the team’s offense this offseason.

Denver Broncos Videos

Manning Pleased - ESPN Video - ESPN
Josina Anderson reports from Colorado as Denver's organized team activities began Monday.

Manning's Next Step
Peyton Manning throws during the team's Monday OTA session and said he's excited to finally compete against a defense.

OTAs Day One: Manning
Quarterback Peyton Manning talks with the media about his first practice of OTAs and the benefits of working against a talented defense.

OTAs Day One: Fox
Head Coach John Fox addresses the media after the team's first practice of OTAs.

Top Five Wide Receivers With The Best Hands - ESPN Video - ESPN
Tim Hasselbeck reacts to Jim Harbaugh's comments about Michael Crabtree and discusses the top five wide receivers with the best hands in the NFL.

NFL32OT - Episode 142 - ESPN Video - ESPN
Peyton Manning has his first full practice with the Broncos, Tim picks the most improved defense in the AFC North, and Marcellus on which team should grab Kellen Winslow.

Denver Broncos Blogs

John Fox: Peyton Manning’s progress has been outstanding | ProFootballTalk
Peyton Manning made his official practice debut as a member of the Denver Broncos today, and Denver coach John Fox liked what he saw.

Peyton Manning: Throwing at Broncos OTAs 'felt good' -
Peyton Manning has thrown plenty this offseason, including in Denver to his new Broncos teammates. But Monday's OTA session was different: The media was invited. A record 58 credentialed members showed up.

MaxDenver " For Those Who Thought the Guy in No. 15 Shouldn’t Play QB …
The Broncos opened practice with wide receiver Mark Dell wearing jersey No. 15. Dell wore No. 83 last year before injuring his knee during a preseason loss to the Dallas Cowboys.

Judge in D.J. Williams case declares mistrial -
Denver Broncos linebacker D.J. Williams' trial on driving under the influence and traffic charges ended in a mistrial just hours after it began Monday, when his lawyer objected to how jurors were selected.

Statistics Don't Tell Story for Ryan Clady -
Reports about a possible contract extension for Broncos left tackle Ryan Clady recently led to a wave of arguments that his performance had been declining. Those arguments aren’t flawed, but their main points of evidence are.

MaxDenver " Receivers Begin Jockeying for Manning’s Attention
"You don’t tell him you’re open," WR Brandon Stokley said. "You just keep doing the right things and he’ll figure it out."

MaxDenver " ‘Open Communication’ Among the QBs
The questions are flowing fast and furious among the Broncos’ quarterbacks as they get to know each other and the offense they’ll guide.

Brian Xanders served purpose as Broncos' GM, then became expendable - The Denver Post
Today's question about the Broncos comes from Daniel Nace. Q: Is Brian Xanders no longer with the Broncos because he didn't support John Elway's draft decisions this year?

Broncos RB McGahee believes Manning will provide relief -
Willis McGahee led a Denver Broncos rushing attack that ranked first in rushing attempts and yards in 2011. The 30-year-old was a yard short of the third 1,200-yard season of his career, a mark thinks he can reach in 2012 with Peyton Manning replacing Tim Tebow at quarterback,

Broncos' Peyton Manning takes charge in first offseason session - The Denver Post
Where it really hit home that Peyton Manning belongs to Denver was not the Broncos blue No. 18 jersey he wore, or any particular pass he threw, sharp as they generally were.

MaxDenver " Scenes from a Practice: Manning’s First OTA
What else would you want to see from the Broncos’ first organized team activity of 2012?

MaxDenver " Scenes from a Practice: May 21
Practice photos of Broncos not named Peyton Manning … including a look at two running backs coming off torn ACLs.

Peyton Manning Shows Off Arm at Broncos Camp -
The horseshoes on Peyton Manning’s helmet have been replaced by profiles of a horse’s head.

Division News

When the Raiders Used Casts as Clubs -
In retrospect, hitting people in the head with hands and forearms covered with illegal casts was not a good thing.

Rolando McClain back with Raiders after court appeal -
Oakland Raiders linebacker Rolando McClain was convicted of assault, reckless endangerment, illegal discharge of a firearm and menacing last week in Alabama. He was sentenced to 180 days in jail, but he is a free man while his appeal goes through the legal process.

Dexter McCluster working solely at receiver for Chiefs -
Kansas City Chiefs running back Dexter McCluster was back working exclusively with the wide receivers when the team opened up its OTAs on Monday, Adam Teicher of the Kansas City Star reports.

Cassel believes in himself, calls OTA process "pivotal" | ProFootballTalk
Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel has become the center of some controversy in Kansas City, given a disappointing performance from the team and Cassel personally in 2011

Future Foes - AFC North players in the crosshairs
As training camp approaches, we take a look at the players on each team who will be most heavily scrutinized. The list contains a fair amount of quarterbacks — no stunner there — but we tried to highlight as many non-QBs as we could. The players featured range from rookies to veterans with 10 or more years of experience.

Bengals OC: 'No reservations' about Andy Dalton's arm -
Andy Dalton came into the NFL with limitations -- for example, he doesn't have the laser-like arm of Matthew Stafford -- but the Cincinnati Bengals did a great job working around those limitations during his rookie year.

Dallas Clark agrees to terms with Tampa Bay Buccaneers -
Former Indianapolis Colts tight end Dallas Clark has agreed to terms with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday after meeting with the Bucs last week, according to a source with knowledge of the situation.

Report: Kellen Winslow generated interest from Bears -
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are going to have a hard time trading Kellen Winslow, but it sounds like they will give it a shot before possibly releasing him outright. One of their first calls will likely be to the Chicago Bears.

Buccaneers deal disgruntled TE Winslow to Seahawks -
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers traded tight end Kellen Winslow to the Seattle Seahawks for an undisclosed 2013 draft pick, the Buccaneers announced in a release.

Andre Johnson has knee scoped, to miss Texans OTAs -
Houston Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson will not participate in the teams OTAs and minicamp following arthroscopic surgery on his left knee, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle reports

Texans don't have much at WR after Andre Johnson -
Andre Johnson underwent knee surgery two weeks ago. Like all offseason surgeries, this one is being called minor. He's expected to be ready for training camp.

Report: Progress made in Ray Rice contract talks -
Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice has not yet signed his franchise tender and isn't expected to attend the start of the team's OTAs on Tuesday, but there has been progress in talks towards a multi-year contract, Jeff Zrebiec of The Baltimore Sun reports.

Mike Jenkins hoping to be traded, will skip Cowboys OTAs -
Dallas Cowboys cornerback Mike Jenkins won't be attending organized team activities when they begin Tuesday, a source with knowledge of Jenkins' situation said. He is rehabbing his shoulder after offseason surgery, so he would not have been able to participate in the on-field portions, anyway.

Phil Taylor should be back by fall, Browns GM says -
Cleveland Browns general manager Tom Heckert gave the most definitive prognosis for injured defensive tackle Phil Taylor yet, saying on Monday that Taylor should be ready to go by the fall.

Brandon Weeden should be 'the guy' at QB, Browns GM says -
Cleveland Browns general manager Tom Heckert left no doubt on Monday that he sees first-round draft pick Brandon Weeden winning the team's quarterback competition.

NFL News

FOOTBALL OUTSIDERS: Innovative Statistics, Intelligent Analysis | 2011 Special Teams Tackles
Let's continue our series presenting various 2011 stats from the multitude of Football Outsiders spreadsheets. Today, we'll look at special teams tackles, both last year and over a three-year period.

NFL owners to consider making leg pads mandatory -
When the NFL owners convene for their spring meeting in Buckhead, Georgia, on Tuesday, one proposal they are expected to vote on is one that would make wearing thigh and knee pads mandatory for all players beginning in 2013, Alex Marvez of reports. Marvez reported hip pads would not be mandatory.

Report: NFLPA would fight against pad proposal -
If NFL owners approve a measure requiring the use of hip, thigh and knee pads by all players starting in 2013 during Tuesday's spring meeting in Buckhead, Ga., the rule will be met with resistance from the NFL Players Association, Alex Marvez of reports.

Eric Dickerson files concussion lawsuit against NFL -
Hall of Fame running back Eric Dickerson filed a lawsuit along with 15 retired NFL players against the league in Houston on Monday, alleging the NFL insufficiently responded to the long-term effects of head trauma, according to Paul Anderson, an attorney who follows concussion litigation.

New device could help limit concussions in practice | ProFootballTalk
As all levels of football try to deal with the realities of head injuries, a new device could reduce concussions that happen during practice.

NFLPA says players have benefitted from new CBA -
New NFL Players Association president Domonique Foxworth sent a letter on Monday to NFL players and agents addressing the criticism levied at the union for its final takeaway following last year's lockout.

Who do you got: Darrell Green or I’ll Have Another? -
Congratulations to I’ll Have Another, who once again surged past Bodemeister to win the Preakness. Watching I’ll Have Another rally for the win brought to mind some of the great rundowns in NFL history, like Don Beebe‘s strip of Leon Lett in Super Bowl XXVII, or

Tabled rules changes on the docket for owners meetings | ProFootballTalk
The owners gathered in Atlanta for their quarterly meetings are expected to take up a host of items that were tabled in March. - Player safety on owners' agenda
With the Saints bounty case moving to grievance hearings and court, NFL owners will talk about player safety when they meet on Tuesday.

California delivers blow to player workers’ compensation claims | ProFootballTalk
Last year at this time, the NFL and NFLPA weren’t able to agree on many things. Eventually, they agreed on enough things to end the lockout.

Draft News

Richardson is waiting for other top picks to sign | ProFootballTalk
On Monday night, Browns G.M. Tom Heckert said that the team has not had extensive negotiations with running back Trent Richardson, the third overall pick in the draft. "I think he wants to wait for some other [top picks to sign],"

Go Broncos!