I’m not sure what kind of year Broncos’ quarterback Kyle Orton will have. But I have a feeling it is going to be better than a lot of people think.
Orton absolutely deserves the contract extension he received and I am glad he and the Broncos came to an agreement. There is no doubt that Orton seems to have a much better command of the offense than he did a year ago. He seems to have more confidence in running it. And he seems to be unbelievably focused in doing whatever it takes to win games.
Even though it was “only” a preseason game last Sunday night, Orton was precise, efficient and creative in his limited duty. He led the Broncos to two touchdowns in the three series in which he played, marching the troops 72 yards in six plays and then taking seven plays to go 68 yards.
Orton completed 8-of-13 passes for 84 yards and two touchdowns. He found Eddie Royal on a 12-yard pass and then, according to Coach Josh McDaniels, checked out of a run play and threw an easy 6-yard scoring pass to Brandon Lloyd.
Keep in mind, this was against the Bengals’ first-team defense, a unit that was 4th-best in the NFL last year, allowing 301.4 yards per game of total offense. And the Bengals allowed an average of 18.2 points per game, 6th-best in the league.
I know, those are last year’s stats. There is no denying, however, that Cincinnati has a really good defense.
And while we’re on the topic of last year’s stats, here is one you might have missed. In his first season in a new system, Orton threw for 3,802 yards, the sixth-highest single season total in Broncos’ history. And he did it on an ankle that was hardly 100% much of the season.
I admit, I am biased. I want Kyle Orton to succeed, and not just because he plays for the Broncos. I want Kyle Orton to succeed because he seems to be a genuinely good guy.
While wanting a long-term deal, he didn’t complain about not getting one. While I imagine Orton was stung when the Broncos traded for Brady Quinn and then drafted Tim Tebow, he didn’t throw a fit. While knowing the NFL is a business, he was refreshingly candid when he said he wants to be with the Broncos for a long time.
Professionalism, class and character matter. Kyle Orton has demonstrated all three. I root for guys like that.
We all know there is more to the NFL than being a good guy. Can Orton lead the Broncos to the playoffs? I don’t know. I think he has the ability but he also will need some help for that to happen this season. There is no shame in that; most quarterbacks need help.
I won’t pretend that I think Orton is a future Hall of Famer or even one of the elite quarterbacks in the NFL right now.
But he is who the Broncos have. And I believe he is good enough to get them to where they want to go. No doubt, the Broncos could do a whole lot worse at the quarterback position.
Orton just has the right stuff. He has the right approach; that is, hard work is the foundation of success. He has the right perspective; that is, it is about winning games. And he has the right disposition; that is, he keeps his cool when things get heated.
Now all he needs is some more wins. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if he gets some of those this season.
What are your thoughts about Kyle Orton and the job he could do this year? Thanks for reading and posting.