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7 things I don’t want to hear from Training Camp news

Info is good. Speculation is bad.

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Denver Broncos Mandatory Minicamp Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Broncos Training Camp 2022 - under new coaching leadership - will kick off in just over two weeks, and it can’t come soon enough.

For a fanbase that has been starved of good football for six years, July is the worst month of the year - we’ve already spent six months of the offseason nitpicking the strengths and weaknesses of the free agents and draft picks, speculated on what scheme coaches will install, highlighted our favorite “position battles” and basically talked ad nauseam about the team.

By July there’s nothing left to talk about and no press conferences in which to parse words and read between every line.

Plus, there are too many dog days of summer heat that melt our brains and allow us to pay attention to even the stupidest of stupid sports news - like the Saudi Tour drama, for example.

As training camp begins, our thirst for anything football becomes a little rabid and coverage at camp can also get, for lack of a more nuanced term, stupid (even by MHR). So to have a little fun on this no-news July day, here are the seven things I don’t want to hear about during training camp coverage because ultimately ...

They. Are. Stupid.

How many INTs Russell Wilson throws

I get it. We like to know when our QB gets a touchdown and also want to know if he ever makes a mistake. The thing is...if there is a time to make a mistake - AND IT IS GOING TO HAPPEN - you want it to be in training camp. That’s when an offense is figuring out what it has mostly only been studying on paper to this point. It’s also when a quarterback and his receivers really get to work on timing - with a little defense, some pads-on play, etc.

And it wouldn’t bother me to know how many interceptions there were if Broncos Twitter didn’t have an absolute meltdown each time. As if those are costing us the Super Bowl right now.

And while I can easily ignore that nonsense, so much of the counting of them is usually without any context (such as there were fewer INTs at the end of camp than the beginning, or the INTs came when working specific situations under stress, etc.) or maybe, the defenders just made a really kick-ass play on the ball, which is a good thing

Either way, interceptions happen. A lot. It’s just the odds when you’re throwing the ball that much. Embrace them now because it’ll mean fewer later.

“Dimes” to Player X

If there’s one thing I hate more than the INT update, it’s the hype over a long-bomb TD. Because for the same reason interceptions shouldn’t be a big deal, neither should the 80-yard passes to the end zone. I mean, l like them too...but ultimately at training camp, they don't mean too much.

How many of those did we get excited about the last six years with Drew Lock, Teddy Bridgewater (his were more like 35 yards), Trevor Siemian, Case Keenum, Joe Flacco, Paxton Lynch, Brett Rypien...did I miss anyone?

It’s silly. Sure it’s fun to see and watch the countless hype videos on Twitter - and I like them as much as anyone. But ultimately, I’d rather see 50 really quick slants to Albert O or KJ Hamler so I know we’ve got a regular 15-yard route that will definitely be needed more times in a game than any 80-yard pass.

How great it is to have music back at Training Camp

It still bothers me that this was a thing.

I know these guys are adults and professionals and a coach shouldn’t necessarily treat them like a bunch of 7th-graders because they can stay focused and get the job done. After all they are getting paid big money to do this; they’re probably going to take it seriously.

However, this is still a league that has produced a quarterback who just slept with his mom’s best friend and one who can’t hire a massage therapist without exposing himself. Sooo, maybe they’re not as “adult” as we’d like. If a coach thinks no music will provide better focus, then maybe we should let him decide that.

Daily report on who played better at “position x”

This one has a fair amount of legitimacy to it, so I won’t berate the comparisons too much. But I would caution against naming a “winner” in just two weeks of practice.

Thankfully - and I mean that in a HALLELUJAH/AMEN kind of way - we don’t have to do this with the quarterback. I’m sure I couldn’t have handled another QB competition between two mediocre quarterbacks.

But it can be equally frustrating to listen to speculation about how a couple flash plays make a guy the next Hall-of-Famer at that position.

However, I do love analysis of young talent that gives insight on their ability, so keep that coming all day long.

Who’s emerging as a ‘team leader’

For one thing, it damn well better be Russell Wilson. It needs to always be the quarterback (at the very least), and so far there’s no reason to think Wilson didn’t immediately grab that bull by the horns the second he signed with Denver.

But beyond that, every season will produce new leaders and it doesn’t happen by the first week of training camp, so stop asking players if they are a leader or which teammates are leaders.

Von Miller was the perennial media-designated team leader, but the truth is, he wasn’t really a leader. He was a great example of work ethic and love for the game, but he’s more of a team player than a leader.

So stop adding titles in July and just watch the team dynamic. Leaders will emerge.

Which players aren’t at camp (along with speculation as to why)

This is the 70s “if it bleeds, it leads” approach to news reporting. If a player isn’t at practice, there’s a reason and you can bet the coach knows about it. If the coach thinks it’s invalid, disciplinary action will happen and you can report on that later.

But speculating why someone isn’t there, wondering if he’s in trouble or injured or skipping practice in defiance is amateur hour. Stop it. Just go ahead and lament the interceptions if you can’t think of anything better to talk about.

The depth chart

Dear reporters/fellow bloggers (including here at MHR), I know it’s tempting. Especially as the first preseason game looms.

But pump the brakes. Wait until the last preseason game at least. Let the boys play, make some mistakes, learn from those mistakes, show some flashes.

And THEN do a complete analysis to determine your best guess at the depth chart.

As if our opinions matter anyway. LOL.

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