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Second Time Around

Posted Feb 21, 2011

Richard Quinn has only experienced one NFL offseason. In his second time off between seasons, the tight end hopes to improve and ready himself for added responsibility on the team.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- On his last snap of the 2010 season, Richard Quinn gave his team a chance.

The Broncos trailed the Chargers 33-28 with 26 seconds left on the clock when Steven Hauschka lined up for an onside kick and drilled the football in a perfect arc just past the 10-yards such a kick is required to travel before the kicking team can recover. David Veikune drilled San Diego's Malcom Floyd when the receiver went up for the football, and Quinn scrambled for the recovery once Veikune jarred the ball loose.

The Broncos could not complete the comeback, but thanks to Quinn, they had their shot. The second-year tight end naabbed his first NFL catch this year, but so far he has made a career out of contributions outside of the spotlight as an extra blocker on running plays and a versatile special-teamer.

"As far as the season, I'm satisfied with the role that I had," Quinn said. "All I wanted to do was contribute the best way I could. Whenever my time was called, I had to do what I had to do. I felt like as far as the things that I did to contribute, I felt like I did a pretty good job."

Quinn ranked fifth on the team with eight special-teams stops, four times the number of special-teams tackles he tallied as a rookie last season. In 2009 he also returned a kickoff for 19 yards and deflected a pass on a fake punt attempt.

The tight end said his goals for his second NFL offseason include intensifying his training and returning to the team ready to develop a larger role on the squad.

"I wish I could definitely always do more," he said. "Now I know this NFL experience is a grind. You just have to get better every day. You have to climb and you have to strive to achieve. There are a lot of things that I have on myself that I want to get done this offseason so I can help improve for the team."

As he takes his time away from his teammates, Quinn said he will focus on amping up his running and conditioning work within the state so he can ensure the altitude won't wind him when it's time to get back to work. He said he will probably visit Red Rocks Park to break a sweat in the thin air. He might drag a teammate with him.

Last offseason Quinn worked out with Lance Ball, who saw the most extensive workload of his career in 2010, and said he plans to team up with Ball again this year.

"You always need that other person to help push you," Quinn said. "When you feel like you've done enough, it may not be enough, so you need that other person to just watch you and keep you on top of your feet."

Running and weight-lifting sessions dominate his schedule, but the offseason won't hold all work for Quinn. He said it's important to him to spend "quality time" with his family, especially his young daughter. He might visit his alma mater, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, to take in a basketball game before he returns to Colarado.

But any vacation won't last long. Quinn any improvement in 2011 will result from how much he toils in his own spare time.

"Just like the season can go by quickly, the offseason does, too," Quinn said. "You always have to be ready to go."