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Transcending the Hype - Are You Buying or Selling It?

Shuffling Off To Buffalo | Rocky Mountain Are You High? | 30-Something RBs

Rocky Mountain Are You High? - I Am Selling The Broncos And It's Not Because I'm A Charger Fan

I cannot even begin to explain just how perplexed I am by the number of people who are predicting a big year for Kyle Orton. To me, this is the proverbial question of whether the Dog is Wagging the Tail or the Tail is Wagging the Dog. Josh McDaniels? Has anybody noticed that the Bill Belichick disciples do not come storming out of the gates with great offensive juggernauts? Working in a great system which brought along Tom Brady and turned Matt Cassel into a household name does not automatically qualify McDaniels as the next great coach of quarterbacks. McDaniels flourished when he had Tom Brady throwing to Randy Moss. Kyle Orton is not Tom Brady nor was Kyle Orton the first choice of Josh McDaniel’s. Somehow, his first choice Cassel slipped through his hands as did the Broncos number one offensive weapon, Pro-Bowler Jay Cutler. Now, their number two offensive player, Brandon Marshall wants to abandon ship and will likely sulk in the corner if forced to play out the season in Denver.

Flashback to the 2009 NFL draft when a team sorely lacking in defense selects a running back despite an already crowded backfield. Are the Broncos a team that are going to rally behind their new coach, or do they secretly harbor a fear that their new coach is a bumbling buffoon who is leading them down the path to destruction?

Can Someone Please Get Me a Body Bag. If I were a young quarterback in the NFL and took a look at the schedule beginning week three with Oakland, Dallas, New England, San Diego, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Washington, San Diego (again) and the New York Giants to round out week 12, I would be concerned about where I just came from and where I was going. Orton will be staring down the sights of Shawne Merriman twice, Osi Umenyiora, Demarcus Ware, Albert Haynesworth, James Harrison and Terrell Suggs (omitting a whole host of other sack leaders). He played against three top ten pass defenses last year, but is likely to see twice as many in 2009. On the upside, two of his better games last season were against Tampa Bay and Philadelphia.

Offensive Line - The Denver offensive line was one of the best last season statistically only giving up 12 sacks, and paved the way for Bronco running backs at a 4.8 yd-per-carry clip. All five starters return which bodes extremely well for Orton. Left tackle Ryan Clady was huge was a key addition and now has a season under his belt. The loss of Shanahan could have cumlative negative effect on the offense as a whole but retaining offensive line coach Rick Dennison has been one of McDaniels better moves thus far.

Is it time to Buy or Sell the Hype?

Kyle Orton - Sell. Face it! The Bears were all too happy to give up first round picks in 2009 and 2010 along with a third round pick, wrapping up that gift with a Kyle Orton bow. Orton was not the answer in Chicago and now he is being asked to be the conductor of this year’s train wreck. Psychologically, I view the fact that McDaniels prematurely declared Orton the starter over Simms - despite the fact that the team has not met together in full pads or in full contact - as a feigned effort to gain control over and boost confidence in not only his QB, but his team as well. McDaniels is off to a shaky start and Orton will be his greatest casualty.

Eddie Royal and Brandon Marshall - Sell. Marshall has love for his team similar to the 2008 Chad Johnson. Marshall told police last year that he hates Denver. This year he doesn’t trust the medical staff, cleared his locker, and even though he is now saying he will be present opening day of training camp, his words sound hollow and I would not be surprised if he pulls up lame with hip pain or an mysterious hamstring strain conveniently landing him on the sidelines without having to forego salary. These are systemic issues that are not going away with a salary bump (which he will not get). Let’s see how Eddie Royal does his sophomore year as the number one, without Jay Cutler.