As Tim Tebow continues to grow from his first few games as an NFL starting quarterback, Offensive Coordinator Mike McCoy said he’s learning right along with the rookie.
McCoy, who assumed playcalling duties three games ago, said he and the offensive staff have appreciated the chance to pick up added responsibility down the stretch this season.
“It’s a great opportunity to learn because there’s something that comes up every week,” McCoy said. “You’re never going to call a perfect game. There’s always going to be something that you want to call, or you want back that you called, and you learn from it.”
McCoy, who had a little bit of playcalling experience from his days as a quarterbacks coach in Carolina, already had a lot of day-to-day responsibilities overseeing the offense and scripting plays for the beginning of the game during the week, but he’s also delighted in his new challenge.
In the last two games since Tebow took over as the starter, the offense has averaged 23.5 points per game — an effort that earned praise from Interim Head Coach Eric Studesville on Thursday.
Studesville credited the offensive coordinator’s composed demeanor and strong communication skills on the sidelines with creating a positive gameday environment for Tebow and the rest of the offensive players and coaches to operate in.
“I had great confidence in Mike from the first moment that I took this over to give him that responsibility, and I think he continues to develop and excel in it,” Studesville said. “The more he does it, the better he is going to get at it. But, Mike McCoy is an outstanding football coach.”
The coordinator said he appreciates the way his staff has pulled together and continued business as usual during a difficult time. While there are no guarantees about the future heading into the season’s final week, McCoy said the last few games have given him invaluable experience as he continues to develop as a coach.
“I’ve learned a lot in the last couple weeks and I’ll continue to learn this week and keep plugging away,” McCoy said. “It’s going to benefit me in the future.”
DARRENT WILLIAMS GOOD GUY AWARD
On Thursday, Mario Haggan was presented with the fourth-annual Darrent Williams Good Guy Award, as selected by the team’s local media.
The award was created in memory of former Broncos cornerback Darrent Williams, who passed away on Jan. 1, 2007, after completing his second season with the team. The award is given annually to the Bronco who best exemplifies Williams’ enthusiasm, cooperation and honesty while dealing with members of the press.
Haggan joins a list of previous winners that includes Elvis Dumervil (2009), Ebenezer Ekuban (2008) and John Lynch (2007).
“This is a great honor,” Haggan said. “A good guy, a guy that means a lot to the Broncos organization — I know that I didn’t get a chance to play with him, but I watched the spirit that he brought and how he meshed with teammates and the coaches and things like that, so to get a Good Guy Award in honor of Darrent Williams it means a lot to me and I appreciate the award and I take it with pride.”
BAILEY NAMED PRO BOWL ALTERNATE
When Pro Bowl rosters were announced on Tuesday, Brandon Lloyd was Denver’s lone representative. But nine-time Pro Bowler Champ Bailey was named a first-alternate at cornerback for the AFC squad.
This year’s contest will be played in the week between the conference championship game and the Super Bowl, meaning anyone playing in the Super Bowl will miss the game. With two of the players selected ahead of him on a pair of AFC favorites — New York’s Darrelle Revis and New England’s Devin McCourty — the veteran cornerback said he expects to end up in Hawaii for the game.
Bailey said that if he was asked to play in the game he would not turn down the invitation.
“It is cool — not as good as getting in there all the way,” Bailey said of his status for the game. “I have a feeling I am going to end up going anyways, considering one guy is on the Patriots and one is on the Jets. So, one of those two teams will probably go to the Super Bowl.”
Knowshon Moreno returned to the practice field on Thursday on a limited basis after missing Wednesday’s workout. Champ Bailey (ankle) and Jamal Williams (non-injury) were the lone Broncos to miss the session.
Bailey said he’s feeling better than he did when he re-aggravated an earlier injury during Sunday’s win against Houston.
The cornerback noted that he has a simple test to decide whether he will be able to go in Sunday’s season finale against San Diego.
“If it is not good enough for me to be as effective as I want to be, then that is when I do not play,” Bailey said. “If I can go out there and do what I do and not feel any pain, then I will play.”
David Bruton (ribs), Brian Dawkins (knee), Mario Haggan (quadricep), Darcel McBath (quadricep) and Kyle Orton (ribs) had limited participation in Thursday’s practice, while Eric Decker (ankle), Eddie Royal (groin), Tim Tebow (ankle) and Demaryius Thomas (ankle) practiced fully for the second straight day.
For the Chargers, tight end Antonio Gates (toe/foot) has been placed on injured reserve, meaning he will miss Sunday’s game. LB Stephen Cooper (knee), WR Patrick Crayton (wrist), LB Larry English (foot), FB Jacob Hester (knee), G Scott Mruczkowski (ankle) and RB Mike Tolbert (neck/shoulder) did not practice Thursday, while LB Antwan Applewhite (ankle) had limited participation. WR Malcom Floyd (hamstring) and LB Brandon Siler (ribs) practiced fully in Thursday’s session.
- Eric Detweiler, DenverBroncos.com
With snow falling at Dove Valley throughout the afternoon, the team moved its practice inside on Thursday. Studesville called it “our best chance to get a good day of work in.”
Here are some photos from the workout: