It is a lot of fun to watch something develop when it involves a really good guy who is genuine, sincere, hard working, and who totally embraces the concept of team first.
That’s what makes the development of Kyle Orton in Denver so much fun. I have seen a lot of them come and go, and this is a class guy, a true professional who embraces what Head Coach Josh McDaniels is doing.
So, having said that all of this is happening just as it should in an ideal world, within the complete concept of team first and only, consider what Kyle Orton is creating so far this year.
Orton has joined Peyton Manning (in 2009), Kurt Warner (2000) and Steve Young (1998) as the only quarterbacks in NFL history with 295 or more yards in each of the season’s first four games. They are the only passers in the history of pro football to accomplish this feat.
He completed 35 of 50 (70.0%) passes for 341 yards and two touchdowns and one interception for a 93.8 passer rating while gaining 11 rushing yards at Tennessee, finishing with 352 yards of total offense in Denver’s 26-20 comeback win.
The Purdue grad’s 341 passing yards and 35 completions led all winning passers for Week 4 and helped the Broncos become……drum roll right now……the first team in NFL history to win a game despite totaling less than 20 rushing yards and yielding six sacks.
His effort against the Titans marked Orton’s third consecutive 300-yard passing game. That represents the longest current streak in the league.
Following his play against the Titans, Orton has totaled 1,419 passing yards, with that mark the second most in NFL history through a player’s first four games.
Trailing 20-16 with less than three minutes to go in the fourth quarter, Orton led the Broncos on a five-play, 49-yard game-winning touchdown drive that culminated in his six-yard scoring pass to running back Correll Buckhalter. It marked the sixth comeback drive of his career and the seventh fourth quarter game winning effort.
Orton threw two touchdown passes in the red zone at Tennessee, improving his career TD-to-INT ratio inside the 20-yard line to 43-3, which stands as the fourth best mark in the NFL among active players.
There is a real long shadow cast over the quarterback position in Denver, but Kyle Orton is working as a great team leader and doing a great job of stepping out from the shadow and into his own light.