The Denver Broncos have found their way again as Jay Cutler has finally answered the question of who will replace John Elway in the hopes and dreams of fans. Brian Griese came and went, Jake “The Snake” Plummer came and went, but Cutler is the real deal. His arm, his attitude, his accuracy, and his room for growth keep the talk around town every Monday going until the weekend.
The cowboy quarterback from Vanderbilt is shining thanks to a new line that has become one, instead of five very quickly. Ryan Clady, Ben Hamilton, Casey Wiegmann, Chris Kuper, and Ryan Harris are the new front five to support the bevy of quality running backs that Denver always has and to support the gunslinger as he bides time to find the big play down field at Invesco Field at Mile High.
It helps when one of the big play options is Brandon Marshall. The development of Marshall and Cutler is linked, and now Eddie Royal has been added to that process. The future for this season, next year, and the seasons beyond look very promising. The running backs getting five or six yards a carry this time are Selvin Young and Andre Hall. A Super Bowl trip is not out of the question now. In a couple of seasons the Broncos will replace the Chargers as the favorites in the AFC West and become one of the most dangerous teams in football.
The Broncos are already scoring points like the Colorado Rockies, but the defense is also giving up points like the baseball brethren. Once the defense solidifies around young guys like linebacker D.J. Williams and defensive end Elvis Dumervil and veteran secondary stars like Champ Bailey and Dre’ Bly, the postseason will become much more than just a one and done exercise.
Mike Shanahan has struck gold just in time to extend his tenure as the Broncos coach. He brought himself the love of the fans and the gratitude of the front office when he won two Super Bowls in a row to close out Elway’s career. Getting an endorsement from the Hall of Fame quarterback made him the only coach in the NFL without a job security issue. A decade later that goodwill was starting to wane. Hopefully, he can bring the defense around and get another 10 years to play at Mile High. His life here and the future of the Broncos depend on the arm of Cutler. That may be a lot of pressure to put on a single player, but when you come and replace Elway (several years after he has retired mind you) that is the hand you are dealt. You can not exchange it, you can only leave the table and play elsewhere.