Van Pelt admits that he wasn't ready for the transition from college to the pros.
"I thought that I would come here (Denver) be myself and play football," he said.
He quickly learned that it takes more than just showing up and putting on the pads. As a pro player you might actually want to crack the playbook, because it takes long grueling hours of studying and true dedication to your team to be successful in the NFL.
Van Pelt was put in the booth for a lot of last year's season. Kind of like a baby in a crib. He sat there for two reasons: one, he needed to be babysat and two, the Broncos had taken an interest in what he could do, so they wanted to make sure he was learning what he was supposed to be learning about the game. Van Pelt worked hard in the off season to get his mind right. He learned that just because he was a stud in college, it didn't mean that he could just walk through the motions at the professional level. "I'm just trying to stay cool out there" Van Pelt said about how he's approaching his new spot on the roster. He knows that the Bronco coaching staff is going to be constantly evaluating his and the other quarterbacks play every snap, "…I'm evaluated every day, every snap." Van Pelt said.
Van Pelt knows to keep his excitement in check. This isn't Christmas, things aren't just given in the NFL, you have to earn them. When asked about his excitement he responded, "all you have to do is look next to you in the locker room and see Danny (Kanell) and Matt (Mauck) and you know they're going to be fighting."
Danny Kanell knows how quickly things can change, "When I came here I was fifth (on the depth chart)." Kanell isn't hiding the fact that he's a little "ticked off", but he's been in the league long enough to know that if he keeps persevering and plays well in the preseason the spot can be his once again.
When it comes to the things that Van Pelt can bring to the field, he reminds you a lot of Jake Plummer. Van Pelt's not the most accurate passer, but he can move, which could help him turn nothing into something. He also never believes a game is out of hand; he's always trying to win. The one thing that Van Pelt lacks is experience, and in close games that's a factor. Don't expect Van pelt to be the second coming, but as the second string quarterback, he could be successful.
Additional contributions by Mishka Char and Diane Harrison Miller
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