JERSEY CITY, N.J. --Tom Brady, Eli Manning, Alex Smith, Philip Rivers, Andrew Luck, Tony Romo. No. 3 quarterback Zac Dysert has been them all in his first season with the Broncos, which has been spent running the scout team in practice.
But the style of Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson represents an unusual challenge for Dysert, a seventh-round pick from Miami of Ohio last year for his drop-back and passing acumen, not his mobility.
Dysert acknowledged that Wilson is among the most difficult quarterbacks for him to impersonate -- partially because of skill set, but also because of what is emphasized for Denver's quarterbacks in the team's offense.
"Probably Russell or maybe Terrelle Pryor (of Oakland)," Dysert said. "We're taught, 'if you get pressure, find your check-down.' For a guy that's athletic like Russell, he can start moving around, maybe extend the play a little bit and make something out of nothing, unlike some other guys. That's just not how they're taught. It's not their style."
Wilson will throw, so it's not going to be the central focus of Dysert's work. But the Broncos' study of Wilson's tendencies will be deep, and Dysert's work must give the defense the looks it needs to prepare.
"We'll do a couple of scramble drills throughout practice to kind of get people used to it," Dysert said "Russell Wilson, he'll scramble, unlike Tom Brady, who'll just try to find his checkdown."
That's more like the style to which Dysert is accustomed. But the scout-team year has been of benefit to him, providing needed repetitions.
"You have a lot of different offenses, obviously, so it's hard to be perfect on that stuff," he said. "But for me, I just work on the things that are universal: your footwork, your timing, accuracy, decision-making, where to go with the ball," Dysert said. "And just to try to give the defense the best look possible when it comes to the other team's quarterback."
It's not game action. But it helps Dysert's development, along with his copious work in the classroom, which he compares with getting a master's degree in football.
"I couldn't be in a better situation," Dysert said. "I've been so blessed, because there's no pressure on me to do anything, it's just learn the offense, do whatever you can to learn as much as you can, watch Peyton, learn from him, be a sponge. And no pressure -- it's the best part. You just kind of sit back and watch Peyton and learn from him, and try to emulate what he does."
Even when that means mimicking another Super Bowl XLVIII quarterback for a few days.