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Notebook: Building with Manning


ENGLEWOOD, Colo. --As far as Offensive Coordinator Mike McCoy is concerned, his job is to adjust to the players he has.

It just so happens that this season he has Peyton Manning at quarterback.

"It all starts with the quarterback," McCoy said. "We have to look at the quarterback and [ask], 'What does he like? What are the things that he is excited to do?' Or, if we come Sunday and there are a couple plays in the game plan that Peyton doesn't like—or any quarterback here doesn't like—we're taking them out, because you have two strikes against you already."

McCoy said the coaching staff is still in the process of perfecting the club's offensive system.

That doesn't mean it will be totally different -- "we are going to run (plays) that we have been running," he said.

But with a player like Manning around, McCoy and the rest of the coaching staff aren't hesitant to ask him what he wants to run on Sundays -- and Thursdays, and Mondays.

"We're going to throw plenty at Peyton of the stuff we've done here in the past, some good concepts that we all like here and some things he hasn't done, and then we're going to adjust to him also and do a few things that they've done in Indianapolis in the past couple of years with him," he explained. "I keep on saying the same thing, but we're going to throw as much at the players as we can and see what we do best as an offense come the end of training camp."

McCoy said both he and Manning are open to new ideas, and the coaching staff has spent some time explaining some of their offensive philosophies, including using using two-back schemes.

"Our offense will grow," McCoy said. "(We'll) just build the best system we can here."


Certainly the offense will benefit from having Manning on the field, but don't discount the effect the quarterback will have on the defense.

"It'll definitely help," Defensive Coordinator Jack Del Rio said of practicing against Manning. "I think he'll challenge us in ways that you need to be challenged to really be at the top of your game. He's very good at what he does, obviously."

But if he has too much success, can it hurt the defense's confidence?

"No, we like competing," Del Rio laughed."So it ought to be fun. We've got a lot of work to do, and who better to work against?"

As for the offense, McCoy said tight ends should be more involved in 2012, and receivers Eric Decker and Demaryius Thomas are "like two little kids in a candy shop right now."

"They've worked extremely hard this offseason so far and they know that an opportunity like this doesn't come around very often," McCoy said of Decker and Thomas. "To be able to play with the quarterback we have now, they are doing everything possible to make sure they know every little detail of everything we're doing, getting in the best shape of their lives so when it comes gameday in September, Peyton and the entire offense—not just those two guys, but everyone—is on the same page."


On MLB Joe Mays: "Joe's an active, aggressive middle linebacker. He packs a punch. He's got excellent closing speed. I think that he's a thumper in terms of when he hits, he's not just a wrap tackler—he delivers a blow. There were a lot of things that I saw on tape that I feel very confident about being able to help elevate him to play even better, and to help the front play even better around him. Some of the holes that he was asked to fill were awfully big. Wwe're going to try to reduce some of those holes a little bit with our technique up front. I think Joe will play even better when that happens."

On LB Von Miller: "The biggest thing is he's come in the way you'd hope he would. He's really attacked the offseason, trying to really learn the new system, the tweaks in the system. It's not all completely new. But to really get it down to where he can just play and let loose. [Linebackers Coach] Richard Smith does a great job with the linebacker group. I know he's been working hard with Von, trying to get him dialed in on the things that we're going to ask him to do. He's a talented guy. Guys that work hard that are talented typically play real well for you."

On DT Derek Wolfe: "I liked him on tape. Really a hard-charging guy, effort-filled. He's got some pass-rush ability inside. I think he'll grow into a real strong player for the Broncos for many years."

On the front seven: "Everywhere I've been, if you go back to Baltimore and Carolina and Jacksonville, it starts up front on defense. We've been fortunate to acquire and develop good players and put together a good front. I feel confident we'll be able to do that here. We've got a lot of work to do. We're busy doing that now in terms of developing guys we have. We've added a couple guys obviously in the draft and a free agent here or there. We're going to make it competitive. We're going to push that group. We're going to expect the front to really help us play great defense."

On the team's defensive backs:"You really can't be deep enough at that position. In today's NFL, with some of the quarterbacks that we have on our schedule, some of the guys you're going to go against, having the ability to cover multiple-receiver sets is very important. We've been aggressive trying to solidify the back end as well. We brought in [CB Tracy] Porter and now [CB] Drayton [Florence] and then [CB Omar] Bolden, added those guys to the guys that were returning. So with that, we think we can make it real competitive and come out with a good group."

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