Good morning, Broncos Country!
While "Birdman" was busy taking home all the cool trophies last night at the Oscars, I was thinking we should have some Academy Awards for the Denver Broncos' 2014 season. It was, after all, full of action, comedy and most certainly drama.
Best Foreign Language Film
John Fox could easily earn the BrOscar for Best Silent Film when he's standing on the sidelines NOT throwing his challenge flag, but he also wins Best Foreign Language Film for his press conferences. My favorite Fox quote was his reference to Broncos playing with heart, something he referred to instead as "that thing that's just to left of the nipple."
Good grief. Chicago, you may need subtitles.
Best Visual Effects
Any time Von Miller took down a quarterback (and then of course did the #FunkyVonSackDance)
Best Sound - Julius Thomas
Bringing home one of two BrOscars for dramatic performance, JT wins this for his infamous "It's so f-in easy" retort after scoring a touchdown against the Jets.
He may have a change of heart if he's donning the Silver and Black next season and finds himself surrounded by a sea of Orange and Blue. (*warning: F-bomb mic'd up)
Julius Thomas yelling :It's So Fucking Easy" after TD https://t.co/YIjeCF3ZfO
— gifdsports (@gifdsports) October 12, 2014
Best Original Screenplay
The Broncos' win over Kansas City at home had everything a good movie needs - a good guy, a bad guy, humor, drama, and a highly suspenseful finish.
With two goal-line stands in the final minutes of that game, the Broncos overcame their yellow-flag plague and pulled out a dramatic win at home when Terrance Knighton swatted down a pass from Alex Smith. It was Mile High magical.
Best Adapted Screenplay - David Bruton Jr.
The strong safety earned this outright for his fake punt audible on 4th down in Week 13 against the Chiefs. The play call to take the snap and run was brilliantly designed and executed. More of those, please.
Best Animated Live Action - C.J. Anderson
No. 22 scampering 51 yards for a touchdown against the Raiders wins this easily, though his 20-yards-for-a-first-down scramble during the now-infamous 4th and 1 against the Colts would be a close second. In fact, Anderson running for all of his 850+ yards could win this award.
Best Actress - Julius Thomas
Bringing home his second Academy Award, Thomas earns this straight up for...well, I'm just gonna say it...blocking like a girl. In fact, I know plenty of girls who might have blocked better.
Best Supporting Actor - Emmanuel Sanders
As the No. 2 wide receiver on the depth chart, this man lived up to his role and then some. Providing seven games of more than 100 yards receiving, 1,400+ yards on the season and 9 touchdowns, not to mention a handful of impressive, sacrifice-your-body-for-the-catch receptions, Sanders could have made a case for best actor. The first-time Pro Bowler certainly has the smile for it!
Best Actor - Chris Harris Jr.
The cornerback that Pro Football Focus just called the best in the league can thank the Academy for giving him an opportunity not many other teams thought about, but after that, it's all CHJ. The cornerback has consistently played his role perfectly, shutting down wide receivers to the point not too many passes come his way any more.
Best Director - John Elway
Not only does John Elway own two Super Bowl rings as a player, the GM should get at least two Oscars for best directing of this team since taking over in 2011. He did what he could via Free Agency and the Draft to beef up the defense and add offensive weapons that would ensure a championship. But Elway and his assistant director couldn't quite get on the same page this season, but with some new personnel working on the next film, Elway hopes for a different Oscar next year.
Obviously, the Best Picture would have been Peyton Manning and the Broncos holding the Lombardi this year, but alas, the director and producer just couldn't get on the same page to bring that one to audiences this year, so we will have to find more funding to shoot that film next February.
Instead, the best picture for this season will go to Peyton Manning for his 509th touchdown, surpassing Brett Favre for all-time TD passes.
Juwan Thompson at fullback?
Rookie running back Juwan Thompson just had his knee scoped over the weekend to address an injury that kept him from contributing at the end of the season.
But new head coach Gary Kubiak is likely to add a fullback in his offensive package, and many are speculating that Thompson could easily fit that role.
John Elway reiterated his preference for the fullback position last week, saying he considers that to be the best way to have a real running game.
"My thing is that to be really effective in the running game, you have to run the fullback," Elway told the Denver Post. "I think to be really effective, you have to have another package."
Could Thompson be that package or will the Broncos need to look beyond the current roster? His size and speed make him a potentially good fit.
Elway on Juwan Thompson perhaps playing Fullback in 2015 "I could see that. I think to be effective in running game, you have to run w/a FB"
— Cecil Lammey (@CecilLammey) February 19, 2015
Irving gaining interest despite injury
Broncos may have to fight to keep Nate Irving in Denver when Free Agency begins next month. Despite a season-ending injury taking the linebacker off the roster late in the season, Irving is getting attention around the league.
ESPN's Josina Anderson reports that despite Irving being placed on Injured Reserve last November for a knee injury that required surgery, he is getting interest from several teams. In his first season as a starter in Denver, the linebacker had 46 tackles in eight games, and his strength is run-blocking.
Kenny Bell at Combine
Remember that cool kid from University of Nebraska who is related to one of our own - KRONK-00 - AND is also the son of former Broncos' running back/kick returner Ken Bell?
Yeah, well, he's fast.
Horse Tracks - Broncos
Gary Kubiak wants to bring back the fullback to Broncos roster
New coach Gary Kubiak likes to have a fullback for his offense. The Broncos haven't had one in three years.
Terrance Knighton among free agents the Broncos likely will lose - The Denver Post
Once the media got a taste of Pot Roast, they kept coming back for more. Every day in the Broncos' locker room became Terrance Knighton media day.
John Elway believes Sylvester Williams will be 'tested'
If the Broncos can't afford to keep Terrance Knighton, the onus falls on Sylvester Williams to take on a bigger role.
Agent: Julius Thomas getting pushed from Broncos - NFL.com
The future of tight end Julius Thomas remains up in the air. Will Thomas part ways with the Broncos? His agent thinks that people are trying to push him out of Denver.
Elway: Coaches "are not afraid to play young guys"
One key aspect of the Broncos' philosophy in 2015 will be giving younger players opportunities to flourish.
Legend and Legacy: Orange's origin
Orange has become one of the most easily identifiable markers of the Broncos' brand. Find out how and why the Broncos decided to adopt it as one of their primary colors.
Horse Tracks - Combine
Denver Broncos tight end/offensive line prospects to keep an eye on, Part I - ESPN
Some of the Denver Broncos' targets at tight end and offensive line worked out at the NFL scouting combine on Friday.
Combine prospects to keep an eye on for Denver Broncos, Part II - ESPN
It's a deep group of receivers in this draft, and even though the Broncos appear to be well-stocked there, they will take a look.
John Elway attended combine as player -- or did he?
John Elway almost attended a regional NFL combine when he was the top player in the 1983 draft. Funny story about that.
Lorenzo Mauldin stands out by standing up as a feminist
Growing up, Lorenzo Mauldin moved from one foster home to another. Eventually he found stability being raised by women, shaping his proud feminist perspective.
TCU's Paul Dawson disappoints in NFL combine 40-yard dash - NFL.com
Touted TCU linebacker Paul Dawson, Mike Mayock's top-rated LB in the 2015 draft, disappointed with his 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Sunday's best performances from the NFL Scouting Combine - NFL.com
Clemson's Vic Beasley was among the standouts at the NFL Scouting Combine on Sunday, as was Kentucky's Bud Dupree and Florida's Dante Fowler. See the top performances of the day from Lucas Oil Stadium.
Vic Beasley, Dante Fowler, Jr. blaze to impressive combine 40s - NFL.com
Top edge rushers Vic Beasley, Dante Fowler, Jr., and Randy Gregory show off their speed Sunday at the NFL Scouting Combine.
47" inch vertical jump at Regional Combine
Willie Creear of Eastern Michigan jumps 47 inches at the Regional Combine in Denver.