Monday, Oct. 15
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NFL Today, Week 6 (The Associated Press)
Monday, Oct. 15
Go here to see the original:
NFL Today, Week 6 (The Associated Press)
Denver Broncos cornerback Tracy Porter will not play in Monday night’s game against the San Diego Chargers because on an illness that has caused dizziness, the Denver Post reported Sunday.
SAN DIEGO (AP) – Peyton Manning or Ryan Leaf? It was the big question going into the 1998 draft and one that was quickly answered that fall. Indianapolis made the right choice and Bobby Beathard and the San Diego Chargers were stuck with a colossal mistake. Nearly 15 years later, Manning is still crossing paths with the Chargers. On Monday night, he’ll bring his Denver Broncos (2-3) to Qualcomm Stadium to face the AFC West rival Chargers (3-2). It’ll be the first time the Chargers have faced Manning since he joined the Broncos in the offseason. It turns out the Chargers have owned Manning, in a sense. The Chargers are 5-1 against Manning since 2005, when they ruined Indianapolis’ shot at a perfect season. They also eliminated Manning and the Colts from the playoffs in consecutive seasons. But they never owned him in the way that really would have mattered. In the spring of 1998, the Chargers were looking to replace Stan Humphries, the only quarterback who ever got them to the Super Bowl. Humphries had been sidelined midway through the 1997 season with a concussion and then decided to retire. Indianapolis had the No. 1 pick. San Diego had the third. Beathard sent a king’s ransom of draft picks and players to Arizona to move up one spot. He said he tried to move into the top spot but Bill Polian, then the Colts’ GM, didn’t want to make the deal. Beathard knew which of the two he would have taken, if given the chance to pick first. “Absolutely Peyton Manning . Absolutely,” Beathard said a few days ago while visiting San Diego. “I even called Archie,” Beathard said, referring to Manning’s father. “In fact, I called Bill Polian to try to make that trade and Bill said they weren’t sure which one they were going to take, so he didn’t want to do that.” Beathard – the only GM to build a Super Bowl team in San Diego – can’t remember what he offered Polian for the top pick, only that he wanted it. He didn’t get it. Indy got a quarterback that would eventually win one Super Bowl, get his team to another and has been chosen NFL MVP four times. San Diego got a quarterback who hurled obscenities and interceptions at an alarming rate before his career flamed out. Beathard remembers coming back from a fact-finding trip to Pullman, Wash., aware of Leaf’s talent – he had led Washington State to the Rose Bowl the previous season – but unaware of his combustible personality. “The thing is about Peyton, we knew them. I knew Archie. It would have been a slam dunk,” said Beathard, who retired in 2000 and now lives in Tennessee. “Polian told me later, `I’m not sure which one is better.’ There’s no question Ryan was good in college. But all the off-field stuff, they were things that I know their coach didn’t divulge and he stuck up for him when I went up there. “It was a mistake we made that was hard to recover from. We would have taken Peyton, no question about it. It wasn’t even a hard decision.” Beathard has another regret. When Indy wouldn’t give up the No. 1 pick, Beathard thought about trading down and grabbing another quarterback. “I can’t remember who, and I wish I had done it,” Beathard said. Beathard always loathed first-round draft picks, treating them as if they were nuclear waste. He often dealt them to stock up on lower-round picks and then take flyers on players from lesser-known schools. Some panned out. Many didn’t. In this case, though, the Chargers were stuck. “The thing didn’t come out well,” Beathard said. “We were scared to death we’d be stuck without a quarterback. We knew we had to get one of the two guys. We unanimously agreed on Peyton, but we couldn’t make that trade up, so we thought we’d at least be fortunate to get one of them. But then all hell broke loose.” The Chargers opened 2-0 in 1998 before Leaf’s meltdown began, on and off the field. He had an abysmal performance in a loss at Kansas City. The next day, he berated a reporter in the locker room, unaware that a television cameraman was taping the entire exchange. After the team’s bye week, reports surfaced that Leaf acted obnoxiously while bar-hopping during a visit to Pullman to contribute $200,000 to his alma mater. His poor performance on the field led the Chargers to bench him, and he finished that season with 15 interceptions, two touchdowns and a 39.0 passer rating. During his long career, Beathard had a hand in building seven Super Bowl teams in jobs ranging from scout to GM. One of his greatest successes was hiring Joe Gibbs as coach of the Washington Redskins in 1981. Together, they won two of the three Super Bowls they reached in the 1980s. He wasn’t as lucky in 1998. “It was really bad,” Beathard said. “There were people in the league that thought we made the right choice, that we got the better of the two. In hindsight, it really made us or me look silly that we didn’t know all that. But we didn’t. I went up there, asked everybody if there were any problems and was told, `He’s a great kid’ and all that stuff. There were a lot of them up there that stuck up for him.” Leaf missed the 1999 season after injuring his right shoulder during training camp and still managed to get into trouble. While rehabbing his shoulder that November, he was suspended for four weeks for cussing at Beathard and others in the organization. Leaf got the heave-ho in February 2001 by then-GM John Butler. Recently, he’s faced drug and burglary charges in Texas and Montana. For Beathard, it’s hard to forget. For Manning, he doesn’t want to remember recent losses to San Diego, although he did beat them his first three tries, including a showdown against Leaf as rookies in 1998. “For me, I’m playing for the Broncos right now. This is my first time playing the Chargers under these circumstances,” he said. “There is some newness to this game and some unknown in terms of what they’ll do. We have new things we’re working on and developing at the same time. I think it’s hard to draw comparisons to years past.” The Chargers also will always be linked with Manning’s younger brother, Eli. The Chargers took Eli Manning with the first pick overall in 2004 despite Archie Manning’s request that they not do so, then swapped the player’s rights to the New York Giants for Philip Rivers and additional picks. Eli Manning has gone on to lead the Giants to two Super Bowl victories. – By BERNIE WILSON, AP Sports Writer (© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
Manning Still Crossing Paths With Chargers
The versatile former starter isn’t even being utilized much as a decoy by the offense.
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TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Ronde Barber has always had a knack for making the big play for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
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Buccaneers shut down Quinn-led Chiefs 38-10 (The Associated Press)
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Peyton Manning or Ryan Leaf?
Can the San Diego Chargers’ offensive line hold up against Von Miller, Elvis Dumervil and the Denver Broncos’ defense? Pro Football Focus examines.
By Rich Kurtzman When the Broncos and Chargers meet on the football field at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, the AFC West division lead will be on the line. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images) Monday night is setting up to be a massive matchup between the two divisional foes, and while both teams are banged up, the Broncos are more healthy overall. There are nine players showing up on Denver’s injury report this week, each and every one of them is listed as probable. That includes Chris Kuper, the seven-year veteran and team captain that plays the right guard position on the Broncos’ offensive line. Kuper has taken longer than originally expected to recover from the fractured forearm he broke in mid-August and Manny Ramirez has struggled in his place. Ramirez has been run over by opposing defensive tackles, sacking Peyton Manning and blowing up running plays for losses of yards. Kuper is expected to finally make his 2012 debut, and if he does play, it will improve both run and pass-blocking for the Broncos. Linebacker Keith Brooking, who sustained a concussion last week, seems unlikely to play this Monday even though he was a full participant Friday and Saturday. Starting left tackle Ryan Clady was too, though he was forced to a limited role on Thursday. Clady is one player the Broncos’ offensive line can’t miss, as he’s their second-best player behind Kuper. Demaryius Thomas, who has become the Broncos’ No. 1 receiving threat, has a hurt hip which could limit his speed and explosiveness a bit. It remains to be seen how injured it really is and how close to 100 percent DT will be. He’s important as the biggest play threat on the team and his size makes him nearly unstoppable. Backup running back Lance Ball is set to carry the load behind veteran Willis McGahee again, while Matt Willis should be able to provide depth at the receiver position. And fullback Chris Gronkowski should be a go with his bruised thigh. Also, nickleback Tony Carter and sixth secondary man Tony Carter should be available to play as well. Overall, the Broncos are incredibly healthy considering it’s Week Six of the NFL season. The Chargers aren’t so lucky. Kicker Nate Kaeding, one of the most consistent at his position, has a bad right groin and has been listed as out. So, Nick Novak, a five-year veteran, will handle all the kicking duties Monday. He’s currently 4-5 on field goals and 7-7 on extra points in the last two weeks. Also with a groin injury is left tackle Jared Gaither, who hasn’t been able to practice all week and is listed as doubtful. Gaither, who is a top-notch tackle, would have had his hands full with Von Miller already, but if San Diego doesn’t have their starting tackle Miller could enjoy a career day. A major concern for the Chargers should be their playmaking wide receivers Malcom Floyd and Eddie Royal, who are both listed as questionable. Floyd, another sufferer of a groin injury, has become San Diego’s top receiver and their offense can’t afford to miss him. Ex-Bronco Royal is modestly producing, but he makes plays both as a wideout and return man. And finally, starting running back Ryan Matthews is expected to play, as is the Chargers’ other starting tackle Jeromey Clary, who are each vital pieces to the team’s offensive puzzle. Probable: Running Back Lance Ball (ankle) Linebacker Keith Brooking (concussion) Cornerback Tony Carter (illness) Tackle Ryan Clady (hamstring) Fullback Chris Gronkowski (thigh) Nickelback Chris Harris (ankle) Guard Chris Kuper (forearm) Wide Receiver Demaryius Thomas (hip) Wide Receiver Matt Willis (not injury related) Chargers: Tackle Jeromey Clary (foot) Running Back Ryan Matthews (ankle) Questionable: Wide Receiver Malcom Floyd (groin) Wide Receiver Eddie Royal (hamstring) Doubtful: Tackle Jared Gaither (groin) Cornerback Shareece Wright (foot) Out:
Tailgaters of all types make it out to Broncos games (Credit= Michelle Perez) At Sports Authority Field at Mile High, tailgating reigns supreme before kickoff. From bus bashes to two pals and a grill, there is room for everyone in the lots of the stadium. And one of the great things about Denver is that it’s a melting pot where almost everyone gets along. It’s a place where you can find rival jerseys cheers-ing Broncos-clad fanatics, and despite the endless barrage of trash talking amongst them, the smiles never fade. So here’s a look at the fun groups of people that make up the tailgating scene in the Mile High city. The Clowns Catch The Clowns at your next Broncos tailgate (Credit= Michelle Perez) Contrary to popular belief, a clown is not a negative persona but rather a blessing in silly disguise. History can attest that no matter what you call them, clowns or silly people in general promote happiness. In the tailgate arena, the sillier the better as costumes range from boys in tutus to Broncos leprechaun to pom-pom monsters. And the smiles they create are reason enough to join them in clownish fashion. So if you’re the silly type who’s not afraid to dress up, then it’s time to get creative and join the rest of the best in the lots of the stadium. There’s no better way to show your Broncos spirit than by creating smiles everywhere you go. The Grill Master Follow your nose to find The Grill Master (Credit= Michelle Perez) A position of prestige, the Grill Master can be found manning his post at the grill, which he won’t budge from until kickoff time. Some you will find quietly turning a steak, basting a rib or flipping a kabob. Others will be found serving up plates topped high with meat and sauce, cheering with their faithful crowd. No matter who they are, there is one thing they all have in common: the allure of delicious, smoky food wafting through the air around them. And they will proudly boast the local market or butcher from which the food came, a classic Coloradoan tribute to the farmers and small businesses that keep it fresh and home-raised. The Bros Bros abound with tailgate games (Credit= Michelle Perez) You will spot them by their rowdy displays at the beer pong table or egging on the girls at the keg. These are the boys-will-be-boys types, challenging each other in games of beer pong, corn hole and drinking. The Bros are found tossing a football around in the lots, shouting “go long!” They would never be caught at a home game without a proper jersey, feeding off the competitive vibes in the air. No matter what school they come from, it’s all about the Broncos at Sports Authority Field. The Humble Tailgater You don’t need much to enjoy a Broncos tailgate (Credit= Michelle Perez) There’s no need for big RVs or elaborate costumes here. The Humble Tailgater is happy to set up shop in their one-lot space with a pal or two and a small grill. However, their Broncos spirit is never broken. You will find them calmly resting in a chair, flipping a brat and enjoying a cold brew, chatting with their small group of friends that came along. Their entourage may be small, but they are nonetheless troopers who refuse to miss out on the fun. The Humbles are proof that you don’t have to go big to have a good time at the tailgate party. The Fam Fans of all ages make it out for the fun (Credit= Michelle Perez) Families come from far and wide to celebrate with the rest of the rowdy pack at the stadium for home games. And with fun, kid-friendly activities all about, it shouldn’t come as a surprise. From tots to teens, the tailgate scene is fun for all ages. The Mile High Mountain Village has inflatable football toss games, bean bag toss, face painting professionals and even Thunder, the horse mascot of the Broncos who rides down the field before every home game. Marching bands make their rounds from lot to lot, getting the crowd amped up for the game with football theme songs. And there is nothing more adorable than a Broncos-clad tot fast asleep in daddy’s arms. Just be sure to keep an eye on the kiddos with all of the movement and drinking going on in the lots. No matter who you are or where you’re from, if you’re in the lots at Sports Authority Field for a Broncos game, you’re as local as anyone. The camaraderie among sports fans everywhere is unique in Denver and whether it’s warm or cold out, you can be sure the party will be fired up before every game. Check out Tailgate Fan to keep the party going at tailgatefan.cbslocal.com . Michelle Perez is a freelance writer covering all things Denver. Her work can be found on Examiner.com .
Broncos Tailgater Profiles
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