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That's What He Said: Elway


On drafting late-round quarterbacks**
"Well, we've taken one, right? We took [QB] Zac [Dysert]. So we thought last year when we took him, seventh round, where he was, that there was enough there that we thought that eventually, hopefully someday we could make him a quarterback and turn him into a prospect. He's a prospect already so it really comes down to the fact that in the seventh round for what we were worried about last year, we thought he had the potential to maybe at some point in time, if not become a starter, then be a solid backup. I don't know what Phil [Emery's] study says; I've heard that, but really our plans is that [QB] Brock [Osweiler] is going to be that next guy. That's why we drafted him two years ago and we're thrilled with his progress up to this point. Fortunately, [QB] Peyton [Manning] has been Peyton for the past two years, so that's been a pleasant surprise but also so has Brock. Brock's really done a heck of a job and been patient and sat back and learned a lot so we will deal with that problem at some point in time [and] hopefully it's not a problem."

On whether middle linebacker is still a need going into this draft
"I don't know that it's necessarily a need. We feel pretty good about [LB] Nate [Irving], especially on first and second down. When we look at it, we're more concerned on third down—the nickel 'backer on third down. We have several options there. [S] T.J. Ward can step down in the box, does a tremendous job in the box, so he could be that nickel 'backer. But we're going into this draft and we're fortunate of the fact that we don't have huge holes. There are always little needs that you have going into a draft and we don't really feel like we have huge holes, so therefore we're going to try to pick football players that we believe can make our football team and also help us."

On what he knows now about the draft now that he didn't know back in 2011
"I think the bottom line is you don't really know until you get there. You have to try to cover all the scenarios you can, especially this week, prepping every possible scenario and really being prepared because once the draft starts, the 10 minutes in that first round is not a lot of time, especially when things are going on. Then especially once we get past the second round, that five minutes is not a lot of time to get things done; you have to make decisions on the spot, so therefore, we cover all the pieces ahead of the draft so we can make the right decision and if you come up with a few different scenarios, there's usually a good chance you're prepared for the right one."

On whether Orlando Franklin is set at left guard or right tackle
"No, I think we're going to look at all the options. I think that we feel pretty good. Obviously Orlando has played well at right tackle. With [T] Ryan Clady coming back, that gives us more options to look at a lot of different options that we have within the offensive line, and that's just what we'll do. So it's too early to say that. I think once we get into OTAs and then into training camp, we'll look at the different options that we have there. But that's not going to change our mindset going into the draft. If there's an offensive tackle or an offensive guard that's on the board that's the best player up there, we'll take him."

On whether the team adjusted its draft preparation with it being pushed back into May
"Actually, to me I've gotten asked that question, and it kind of helped us because our season went so long. It pushes everything back. So with the two extra weeks, it allowed us to really kind of catch up. So we're fine with the extra two weeks. We did stretch out the preparation period a little bit longer, but we're fine with it being where it is and we'll be ready come Thursday."

On how he weighs off-field issues for draft prospects
"What we do, is that we look at every player and we look at the full package that each player has to offer. One issue or another—we try to put them as a group as what he has to offer us with the Denver Broncos and if he can come in here and help us. That goes into evaluating each player. Whether it be character, mentality, football mentality—that all goes along with the player."

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