Archive for the ‘Tony Scheffler’ Category

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Some things to watch for vs Dallas

August 18, 2007

Unfortunately, I don’t live in Denver or Colorado or any state nearby in fact. That means I don’t have local TV coverage of the Bronco’s. And that means I won’t be able to see our second preseason game tonight against the Dallas Cowboys until tomorrow afternoon when the NFL Network replays the game.

And since I want to watch the game before reading anyone else’s opinions or analysis, I will be imposing an internet-ban on myself from tonight until tomorrow evening. That means no surfing the net, checking email or blogging for 24 hours… ouch!

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Read the rest of this entry ?

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TRAINING CAMP: DAY 11

August 9, 2007

 

NOTES AND NEWS FROM DAY ELEVEN OF TRAINING CAMP:

“I’m bringing it back. Today’s an old-school day.” — Javon Walker 8/9/07

And with that, Javon Walker broke into another dance in front of Brian Clark who was admirably trying to keep a straight face while covering #84 during 1-on-1 drills.

Today marked a cheerful day for our #1 wide out, as Javon joke and smile all morning. He danced, he high-stepped, he laughed and he even spent the end of practice impersonating a sideline judge — holding the down marker and even whistling the play dead as Cutler worked on spiking the ball to stop the clock.

Shanahan didn’t have to talk about how important Javon Walker’s much improved emotional state was, instead he commented on Walker’s sideline referee work.

“Just like coaches, you never know for sure how long you’re going to be here. The more you can do – the better off you are.” — Mike Shanahan (kiddingly commenting on Javon Walker’s morning reps working the down markers) 8/9/07

All kidding aside, this is very good news for all of Bronco Nation. All Bronco fans have been watching Javon closely to see how he is handling the tragic events of 1/1/07. Javon has been silent on the issue of Darrent’s death all off-season (and who can blame him). He has also been withdrawn and reserved during Denver’s other OTA days. And he has rarely flashed his trademark grin as training camp started.

But today it was Javon “old school” Walker… and we can only hope this marks another step in his emotional healing process.

 

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ATTENDANCE:

Nate Jackson and John Lynch were both out of town today for the funeral of Bill Walsh. Jackson credits Walsh with guiding him from Menlo college to the NFL, and Lynch played under Walsh at Stanford.

Wide Recievers Brandon Stokley (left thigh), Brandon Marshall (quadriceps), Glenn Martinez (right thigh), Marquay McDaniel (left hamstring), Rod Smith (left hip) were all held out today.

OT rookie Ryan Harris was sidelined today due to ‘tweaking his back.’ It’s theoretically not serious. Unfortunately that makes our O-linemen group thin, as Lepsis (groin) and Ben Hamilton (concussion) are stil both out. We are told that both of our veteran injuries are mild and their being held out is a precautionary action.

Backup safety Hamza Abdullah (right Hamstring) and Quentin Harris (right knee) both sat out. LB’s Louis Green (knee) and Warrick Holdman (spinal cord concussion) also did not practice. OT Jacob Rogers (left knee) also was sidelined, but DE Jarvis Moss (knee) actually participated in some position drills today.

Tony Scheffler was back on the field again today — and looking good!

On the Other hand, WR David Kircus and FB Kyle Johnson had on-field treatments during the practice. They both were limited to less reps for the rest of practice.

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OFFENSIVE LINE UPS: THURSDAY

den-logo.jpg Quarterbacks:
Behind Jay Cutler and Patrick Ramsey, Darrell Hackney and Preston Parsons have been in a heated battle for a final PS spot.

den-logo.jpg Wide Outs:
No real changes here… The WR’s we have get reps. )

den-logo.jpg Tight Ends:
No real change from the last few days.

den-logo.jpg Running Backs:
No change: Travis Henry, Cecil Sapp running second. Mike Bell, Andre Hall and Young following behind.

RUMOR MILL: The Denver Post is reporting that Mike Bell has passed Cecil Sapp on the depth chart and is now running #2.
den-logo.jpg O-line:
1st Team O-line was unchanged from yesterday with LT Adam Meadows (filling in for Lepsis), LG Chris Myers (filling in for Ben Hamilton), C Tom Nalen, RG Montrae Holland and RT Erik Pears.

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DEFENSIVE LINE UPS: THURSDAY

den-logo.jpg D-line:
* 1st Team D-line stayed the same as the last couple of days: DE’s Ebenezer Ekuban and John Engelberger, DT’s Gerard Warren and Sam Adams (Jimmy Kennedy filled in for Adams this morning).
den-logo.jpg Linebackers:
* 1st Team LB’s were: continuing the SAM rotation, Nate Webster took his turn with the starters today, D.J. Williams at MIKE and Ian Gold at WILL.

den-logo.jpg Secondary:
No changes here, but Domonique Foxworth filled in for Lynch (out at Bill Walsh’s funeral).


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SPECIAL TEAMS LINE UPS: THURSDAY

den-logo.jpg Kick-Off Return Team:
Scott O’Brien had another very productive Special Teams practice in the afternoon. Check out Andrew Mason’s blog entry covering this: HERE

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TRAINING CAMP: DAY 10

August 8, 2007

NOTES AND NEWS FROM DAY TEN OF TRAINING CAMP:

ouchThe sidelines at today’s practices were full and overflowing. Including veterans who are on one-a-days, the Broncos had 27 players watching rather than playing this afternoon. That’s over a fourth of our roster!

I am certainly not being craven about the situation. This is normal for training camp, and our list isn’t much longer than most of the other teams currently at camp. I know you won’t hear much more than who isn’t at practice from most of the mainstream media, but that’s because of the old “if it bleeds, it leads” mentality.

Actually, all of the media’s focus on the team’s injuries may be a good thing. Jay Cutler has probably experienced reduced media attention as they instead have beaten to death the subject of our depth at wide receiver for example. And D.J. Williams has also likely been less harassed by the media hounds in recent days as they have prefered to talk endlessly about rookie injuries (like Jarvis Moss’s knee injury scare).

All this media coverage of our injuries, also keeps expectations low leading into the season (or at least the preseason). I’d much rather let the media discuss how great the Colt, Patriots and Chargers are going to be this season, while ignoring our strong points and chatting about our camp injury report.

In the end, all these injuries and one-a-day sessions are completely normal. Nothing we’ve heard so far should have fans concerns. We’ll have a great team when the season starts and the roster is down to 53 players. For now, we just have to humor the media’s coverage of the latest bruise on John Lynch’s shin, David Kircus’s stubbed toe and Travis Henry’s new hangnail.

 

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ATTENDANCE:

The following players were held out of practice today due to injury: Louis Green (left knee), Ben Hamilton (concussion), Quentin Harris (right knee), Warrick Holdman (spinal cord concussion), Matt Lepsis (groin), Brandon Marshall (quadriceps), Glenn Martinez (right thigh), Marquay McDaniel (left hamstring), Rod Smith (left hip), Brandon Stokley (left thigh), Lamont Reid and Doug Nienhuis (both injured in NFL Europa).

And the following players participated in the morning session, but were held out of the afternoon work: Travis Henry, Champ Bailey, Nick Ferguson, Dre’ Bly, John Lynch, Ian Gold, Gerard Warren, Tom Nalen, Jacob Rogers, Stephen Alexander, Daniel Graham, Ebenezer Ekuban, Sam Adams, Jarvis Moss.

Hamza Abdullah also sat out of the afternoon practice, but he was held out due to a slight injury in the morning session.

Tony Scheffler practiced again today, although he still split off after a while to continue his rehab.

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TRAINING CAMP: DAY 9

August 7, 2007

NOTES AND NEWS FROM DAY NINE OF TRAINING CAMP:

“I’ve just been banging into Travis a little bit too much.” — John Lynch 8/7/07

Not content with one injury announcement, the Broncos had four of them today. The biggest name among them was John Lynch, who left the field this morning after suffering a bruised sternum… Uh, yeah. The dude bruised his sternum on Travis Henry — ouch! John Lynch said he would have continued to practice, but that the coaches pulled him. TRUTH: Lynch is a BEAST!

LT Matt Lepsis hit the injured list today. No, it wasn’t his rebuilt knee –it was a pulled groin. Actually, according to Mike Shanahan it was “a little bit of a groin pull”… which sounds more like a very naughty action rather than an injury.

“I’m not sure how serious it is right now, but it’s enough to keep him out” — Mike Shanahan 8/7/07

Mike Bell was shook up after a got hit during team drills today. And finally, backup safety Quentin Harris left the field after smashing into RB Andre Hall during goal-line drills. It looked like he was getting treatment on his right knee. Both players remained on the sidelines but didn’t participate for the rest of the morning practice.

But, a small ray of hope was seen briefly as Tony Scheffler showed up this morning in full uniform. He only participated in 30 minutes of warm-ups and light work, before calling it a morning… but it’s progress!

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ATTENDANCE:

In addition Lynch, Lepsis, Bell, Harris wideouts Brandon Marshall, Rod Smith, Marquay McDaniel and Glenn Martinez were all still out.   TE Chad Mustard, LB Louis Green DT Sam Adams were also held out today.  Brandon Stokley was in pads, but only did light work in individual drills and installation.  Lamont Reid and Doug Niehuis were also both still on PUP.

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OFFENSIVE LINE UPS: TUESDAY

den-logo.jpg Wide Outs:
No real changes here… The WR’s we have get reps.  🙂
den-logo.jpg Tight Ends:
No real change from the last few days. Although in an update from Andrew Mason reported that Nate Jackson (although listed on the 3rd Team) has had plenty of reps with the 1st Team when we they line up with two TE’s.
den-logo.jpg Running Backs:
No change: Travis Henry, Cecil Sapp running second. Mike Bell, Andre Hall and Young following behind.
den-logo.jpg O-line:
1st Team O-line was unchanged from yesterday with LT Adam Meadows (filling in for Lepsis), LG Ben Hamilton, C Tom Nalen, RG Montrae Holland and RT Erik Pears.

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DEFENSIVE LINE UPS: TUESDAY

den-logo.jpg D-line:
* 1st Team D-line stayed the same as the last couple of days: DE’s Ebenezer Ekuban and John Engelberger, DT’s Gerard Warren and Sam Adams.

NOTE:Jimmy Kennedy filled in for Adams and Warren throughout the day.

den-logo.jpg Linebackers:
* 1st Team LB’s were: D. D. Lewis took his turn with the starters today at SAM today, D.J. Williams at MIKE and Ian Gold at WILL.

den-logo.jpg Secondary:
No changes here as CB’s Champ Bailey and Dre’ Bly and Safeties Nick Ferguson and John Lynch played on the 1st Team. Foxworth was their Nickel back and Cox joined the 1st Team during work on the Dime Package.


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SPECIAL TEAMS LINE UPS: TUESDAY

den-logo.jpg Kick-Off Return Team:
Scott O’Brien had a very active Special Teams practice in the afternoon. Check out Andrew Mason’s blog entry covering this: HERE.

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Training Camp Starts Tomorrow!

July 28, 2007

Jump starting the training camp coverage, Andrew Mason has posted the full video of Mike Shanahan’s pre-camp press conference over on denverbroncos.com. He also has a break down of the conference on his blog over at Mason’s Morsels. Here’s a quick look at a few points of interest…

 

den-logo.jpg PUP (physically unable to preform) list includes Rod Smith, Tony Scheffler and… you guessed it, Brandon Marshall. Marshall is still recovering from his quad injury at mini-camp. And while ‘Baby TO’ has unbelievable talent and skills, he HAS to get on the field to get that #2 spot.

“It never helps you when you’re not practicing” — Mike Shanahan 7/29/07

The positive thing about this list is that Brandon Stokley is not on it. After he participated in drills at mini-camp, he has not had any set backs and is expected to take part in all of camp (although he will be among the veterans that are waved from two-a-days).

Mike mentioned that we have 11 guys at the WR position. And with 8-9 guys getting reps per session, he and the other coaches should get a good idea of who is progressing toward one of the final roster spots.

den-logo.jpg Leadership was mentioned in the wake of losing Plummer and Wilson (and with Rod still sidelined). Mike’s response was typical Shanahan:

“There is only one was to be a leader in the Nation Football League — and that’s you have to play well.”

— Mike Shanahan 7/29/07

Not that the team doesn’t have a slew of veteran leaders. Shanahan’s list started with John Lynch, which shouldn’t surprise anyone that watched Tampa Bay during the years leading up to the Super Bowl, when Lynch was the captain of the defense. Nick Ferguson and Champ Bailey were also noted as leaders by example. On the offensive side several O-linemen were mentioned (Matt Lepsis, Tom Nalen and Ben Hamlton).

And what of our new QB’s leadership?

“Jay Cutler will become a leader when he plays well… We’re all judged on Game Day — and he will be judged as well.”

— Mike Shanahan 7/29/07

 

den-logo.jpg Mike also had a few words for his former Super Bowl MVP, Terrell Davis, the day after it was announced he will be inducted into the Ring of Fame.

“A lot of people talk about ‘The System’ all the time. People don’t realize how great a back Terrell Davis was for this organization, and what type of person he was as well. To see him get into the Ring of Fame is really special.”

— Mike Shanahan 7/27/07

 

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Have a good night sleep tonight… we’ll have photos, video and news to go over from the first day of Denver Bronco’s training camp 2007 tomorrow!

 

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INJURY UPDATE: Rod Smith, Tony Scheffler, Brandon Stokley

July 11, 2007

So, Rod Smith’s recovery is going slower than expected.  Not all that surprising, but as the wide receiver position is an open competition this year (beyond Javon Walker, of course), it makes Smith a hot topic.  ALL of the major papers and websites have articles running on Smith, who met with reporters after mini-camp wrapped up on Tuesday. 

“Everybody’s body is different.  When you get a little older, it takes a little longer. My body said, ‘No, you’re not (ready).’ I have to listen. The thing is getting ready for football season. I know camp is a part of the season, but football season starts in September. That’s what I’m looking forward to.”

— Rod Smith 7/10/07

Article and video on Denverbroncos.com: FULL STORY & VIDEO

Article at Rocky Mountain News: FULL STORY

Notes on Smith in the Denver Post: FULL STORY

Associated Press Article: FULL STORY

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Tony Scheffler had a doctor visit on Friday (before mini-camp) that confirmed he is on schedule with his recovery.  That’s good news on an injury that can be problematic.  Scheffler broke his foot (specifically his fifth metatarsal bone) and had to have a screw inserted to repair the split.  That surgery was May 21st, and Tony has been in a boot until last week. 

“I’m kind of in their hands and they’ve stressed to me I should be about ready to go come camp. But it’s kind of hard to guess what will happen in the next two or three weeks.  At this point, I’m not terribly concerned about it.”

— Tony Scheffler 7/10/07

The good news is that Scheffler has continued to work out (his upper body) and has lost 11 pounds from his ill-advised off-season bulking up plan.  The coaches were not pleased with Tony’s idea, and he has managed to lose almost all of the added weight. 

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The bright spot during mini-camp was seeing Brandon Stokley, not only in a Denver uniform finally, but actually participating in 7-on-7 drills.  He seems to be ahead of schedule and should be full speed by the preseason (if not camp).  That’s really good news for a position with many questions marks.

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DOGFISH: Camp Preview WR’s & TE’s

July 10, 2007

With the first day of the Bronco’s mini-camp in the books, we got an answer regarding “The Brandon’s,” Mike Shanahan had this to say about Stokley appearing for the first time in a Broncos jersey.

“He’s ahead of schedule. When we start camp, he should be 100 percent (to) go.”

— Mike Shanahan 7/9/07

Stokley didn’t partake in 7-on-7’s but he was in uniform and ran drills. In addition to Stokley, Brandon Marshall was on the field and participated in drills — which is a great sign as he had sat out the last part of team camp.

…and speaking of wide receivers… we have today’s Training Camp Preview on wide outs and tight ends by our friend and fellow obsessed fan, Dogfish.

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GUEST AUTHOR: DOGFISH

WIDE RECEIVERS

OVERVIEW:

Receiver is one of the most crowded spots on the roster right now, so camp will be crucial to start seperating the men from the boys. Javon Walker is the only one who’s pretty much guaranteed his spot on the depth chart, and the coaching staff isn’t likely to overwork the vet after the way he proved himself last year–look for walker to be excused from some of the back ends of two-a-days, as the younger guys need the reps more anyways.
The health of Rod Smith and Brandon Stokley will definitely be one of TC’s burning questions. Lee Rasizer recently reported that Stokley is running freely, and that Smith is progressing nicely, so that’s good news. Both players have a big edge in the battle for spots 2-4 due to their track record and experience, but they’ll still have to show it on the field with lots of young legs behind them waiting for a shot. All they have to prove is that they’re healthy, though– if they are, both should easily win their spots.
TC will be as important for Brandon Marshall as anyone on the team. According to early reports, he will enter camp as the favorite for the second starting spot–a good showing could go a long way to cementing that position for him. This will be a great chance for Marshall to refine his route-running skills working against our starting corners. On the opposite end of the spectrum, this camp may be David Terrell’s last chance to make it in the NFL.
I believe that we’ll probably carry six receivers again this year–with the last two spots reserved for guys who can contribute on special teams. There will be major competition for those two spots between Quincy Morgan, Brian Clarke, David Kircus, Domenik Hixon and Marquay McDaniel. The wildcard here is Hixon, who’ll finally get a chance to justify the 4th round pick we spent on him in 2006 after spending last season on IR. Hixon’s size, speed and experience on the defensive side of the ball make him an ideal candidate to play gunner on the punt coverage units, so if he can show something as a return specialist he’s likely to earn a spot.

I personally feel that Morgan is next in line–he came on a bit as a returner at the end of the season, and is the only player among the bunch who has any proven history as a receiver. With a full off-season and TC under his belt, he may get a chance to carve out a role as an occasional deep threat on offense. Some people still love Kircus’ potential, but he’s played for quite some time now without proving anything–and he surely didn’t win any points with Mike Shanahan by getting into some off-season legal trouble. Clarke is younger and has a relatively similar skill set, and may have a bit more developmental potential left at this point.

McDaniel, the undrafted rookie from Hampton, has been getting some attention lately. A strong showing in camp could possibly move him into position to mount a legitimate challenge for the last spot—otherwise, I see him as a likely candidate for the practice squad. Ultimately, at least one of the last two spots will be reserved for a return specialist–if one of these guys can separate himself in that area, he’ll almost certainly guarantee himself a job.

PLAYER TO WATCH:

Brandon Marshall– This guy is just oozing potential, and has reportedly been busting his butt over the off-season (including speed training in Chris Carter’s highly-touted program). The Air Marshall was one of the stars of last year’s camp before a preseason knee injury took him out of the lineup for several weeks and slowed his development. He looked tentative for a while after his return, and another good camp could go a long ways towards establishing the confidence that he needs. How quickly he develops could be one of the key factors in determining just how dangerous our passing game can be this year. Also, his size and strength give him a chance to be a great run blocker, one of the underrated aspects of his potential IMO. Hopefully the coaching staff will keep after him to work hard in this area–as downfield blocking from our receivers has been one of the keys to our running game over the years.

BEST POSITION BATTLE:

Hixon vs. the Field for the RS job. For a position that’ll be as hotly contested as any in camp, it’s hard to pick just one battle–but I’ll go with this one as I think it may be one of the most wide open competitions this summer. Also, we all know how badly our return game sucked last year–it could be really big for us if a legit threat emerges from the pack. If Hixon plays to his timed 4.34 speed, he can be dangerous.
PROJECTED DEPTH CHART:

1. Javon Walker
2. Brandon Marshall
3. Rod Smith
4. Brandon Stokley
5. Quincy Morgan
6. Domenik Hixon

TIGHT ENDS

OVERVIEW:

With the return of Dan Graham to Colorado, someone is likely to get caught in the numbers crunch here– TC could go a long way towards determining who it is. Graham will need some reps to get comfortable with Cutler, and with the O-line, but with his injury history the coaching staff will have to balance his need to learn against the risk of him getting dinged up and having it linger into the season. For that reason, I suspect that the Chef will get plenty of chances to work with the starters (not just in two-TE sets). No question TC will be big for Tony Scheffler, who like Marshall needs to build some confidence and consistency going into the season. Chef also needs some serious work on his blocking, and that should be a major area of focus for him. Stephen Alexander, Teyo Johnson, Nate Jackson, Chad Mustard and Mike Leach round out a pretty deep group of TEs (though we all know Leach is really just a badass long snapper who probably wouldn’t play offense except for emergency duty). With two capable receiving TEs at the top of the depth chart, I think converted wide receivers Jackson and Johnson are really facing long odds to make the team this year, unless one of them absolutely lights it up in camp.
PLAYER TO WATCH:

Gotta go with the Chef here, as camp will give him a golden opportunity to refine some of the impressive skills he flashed down the stretch last year. the more he improves that blocking, the more involved in the offense he’s going to be. Now that he’s had a year to make the leap from a small school and adjust to the speed of the NFL, we should see that athleticism start to show itself more and more. He can be a weapon that we move all over the field, and I’m expecting him to make some big plays for us this season.

BEST POSITION BATTLE:

Chad Mustard vs. Stephen Alexander– I think this will be the battle for the last roster spot at TE. I think we may only carry four TEs this year, and IMO Graham, Chef and Leach have their spots all but locked up. With the balanced Graham likely to start, I can see us keeping one pure receiving TE (Scheffker) and one pure blocking TE (Mustard)– if we want to go with a more balanced TE in that last spot, it will be Alexander, and if we keep five this year I think he has the best chance at the fifth spot.
PROJECTED DEPTH CHART:

1. Daniel Graham
2. Tony Scheffler
3. Chad Mustard
4. Mike Leach

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Thanks, again, to Dogfish for his excellent position reviews leading into Training Camp this month. I’ll attempt get his O-line Camp Preview up later today.

For more pictures and info about the first day of Mini-Camp check out Andrew Mason’s Blog: HERE