Denver Broncos News Blogs - Friday, Nov. 11

Denver Broncos wide receiver Todd Devoe learned that his father had been killed on Thursday and has returned to Florida. Read about Devoe and other news of the Denver Broncos in today's reports.

Devoe's father killed in Florida - Denver Post - Mike Klis
11/11/2005 - Broncos receiver Todd Devoe received news Thursday that his father was shot and killed in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., according to Broncos coach Mike Shanahan. "Todd was in our meetings this morning and he had a tough time," Shanahan said. "He found out coming to work."

Nalen's success speaks volumes - Denver Post - Mark Kiszla
11/11/2005 - Maybe you know him as Tom Nalen, the most underappreciated player in the NFL. The Broncos call him something else. "Wilson," Denver linebacker Keith Burns said Thursday. Say what? Please explain. I plead guilty to being tragically unhip. "You remember that movie starring Tom Hanks?" Broncos veteran Al Wilson said. "The one where he was stranded on a deserted island?" Oh, yeah. "Cast Away." A few years back, it played on two screens at every cineplex in America. "Hanks talks to a volleyball with a face painted on it," said Burns, listing the physical similarities between the castaway and his ball. "Long hair. A beard. Just like Nalen."

Broncos rookies have wall to climb - Rocky Mountain News - Jeff Legwold
November 11, 2005 - The calendar tells no lies. It's all right there, all in the numbers that have counted the days. It's just that Darrent Williams already has turned the page on those pages. "Everybody tells you about 'the wall,' " Williams said. "So, yeah, I've heard about it and I want to go around, over it, whatever. I'm going to do what I can so it doesn't hit me." It is the new math for Denver Broncos rookies such as Williams. Counting the preseason, Williams has played in 11 games for the Broncos this season. His longest collegiate season at Oklahoma State was 2002, when he played in 13 games. The increased number of games is why most in the NFL routinely have called the eight-game mark the rookie wall, the place where first-year players find they have played almost as much as they ever have but still have a long way to go.

Plummer, Collins whittle away errors - Rocky Mountain News - Lee Rasizer
November 11, 2005 - Jake Plummer and Kerry Collins have been models of efficiency this season, compiling two of the lowest interception percentages in the NFL. What, in the wild, wild AFC West, is going on here? Neither quarterback has been associated with mistake-free play in the past. Collins, of the Oakland Raiders, has thrown more touchdowns than interceptions only five times in 10 full seasons; Plummer, of the Denver Broncos, only three times in eight previous seasons. Each veteran threw 20 interceptions in 2004, the highest total in the AFC and tied with Vinny Testaverde for the NFL lead. Collins and Plummer each enters the game Sunday at McAfee Coliseum (2:05 p.m. MST, CBS 4) between the Raiders (3-5) and Broncos (6-2) with a mere three interceptions and 12 touchdown passes.

Devoe heads to Florida after his father's death - Rocky Mountain News - Jeff Legwold
November 11, 2005 - Denver Broncos receiver Todd Devoe was excused from the team's meetings and practice Thursday as well as those today so he could return home to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., after learning his father had died. Broncos officials were informed Thursday morning that Devoe's father had been shot and killed in Florida, but no other details were immediately available. However, Devoe told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel his father had not been murdered and that it was a "private, family matter."

Red-zone defense a concern - Daily Camera - Ryan Thorburn
November 11, 2005 — Entering the second half of the season, Broncos defensive coordinator Larry Coyer has made note of a red flag in the league statistics. Denver is currently ranked 31st in the NFL in defensive efficiency inside its own 20-yard line. Opposing offenses have scored 13 touchdowns in 19 trips inside the Broncos' 20-yard line. In other words, when Coyer's crew bends, it breaks. "We haven't made plays," Coyer said. "We've got to look at our scheme, we can't just blame players. But we've gotten them in big-play situations, and they've made them. "That's got to change. We've got to figure a way to change that. That's a key to winning. If you can force field goals, then your chances improve greatly. It's like a win."

T.O. or no T.O, Champ remains confident - Daily Camera - Ryan Thorburn
November 11, 2005 — The demise of Terrell Owens in Philadelphia couldn't have come at a worse time for Champ Bailey. Owens' final game wearing an Eagles uniform was on Oct. 30 at Invesco Field. Even though Denver won 49-21, the most popular highlight shown on ESPN — the all-T.O., all-the-time network — is the receiver's 91-yard touchdown catch in which he undressed Bailey at the line of scrimmage. It looks bad, but Bailey's hamstring felt bad. Not that the Pro Bowl cornerback needs an excuse or is worried about the nation's perception of his cover skills. "All I care about is the thoughts and feelings of the guys in this locker room," Bailey said. "That's all that matters."

T.O. or no T.O, Champ remains confident - Mercury News - Daniel Brown
Fri, Nov. 11, 2005 - As a high school senior, D.J. Williams spent Fridays or Saturdays scoring touchdowns for De La Salle and Sundays watching his beloved Raiders. His frequent visits to the Coliseum helped Williams put together a scouting report that will come in handy this weekend. And though the inside information is useless to his Denver Broncos teammates, it could prove vital for his contingent of about 25 friends and family members. "I told them not to wear Broncos stuff to the game,'' Williams said. ``You don't want to be wearing the other team's colors near the Black Hole.'' The harder part for the Williams crowd Sunday will be staying silent, since Broncos fans have plenty to cheer about these days. Denver is 6-2 and looks like a superior version of the teams that have flamed out in recent postseasons. The Broncos are 0-3 in the playoffs since John Elway rode off into the Super Bowl sunset in 1998.

Broncos' Plummer playing to potential - Mercury News - Steve Corkran
Fri, Nov. 11, 2005 - ALAMEDA, Calif. - Denver Broncos quarterback Jake Plummer will arrive in Oakland on Saturday for a game against the Oakland Raiders the next day no longer maligned as a talented but underachieving player. He basks in the attention being heaped upon him as the engineer of the league's third-ranked offense and the unquestioned leader of the AFC West-leading Broncos. Yet, to praise him for his superb play this season is to undermine what he accomplished in his first eight NFL seasons. In his eyes, this year is but another step in the logical progression of his career. "I guess if that's what they're writing, then I must be," said Plummer, bristling at the suggestion that his play in the first half of this season represents a long-awaited convergence of potential and execution. Few dispute Plummer's talent and versatility. It's the maddening inconsistency that has kept people from recognizing him as anything more than a player capable of making a jaw-dropping play one moment and a head-scratching one the next.

Nothing New About Wilson's Performance - Denver - Andrew Mason
Friday, November 11, 2005 - Somehow, it was appropriate that Al Wilson gleefully and playfully darted through the locker room in an old-school, faux leather helmet Thursday afternoon. Perhaps it was because the seventh-year linebacker plays the game with a passion that harkens back to bygone days. Perhaps it was because he liked the look. Or perhaps he just wanted to goof on some of his older teammates. Whatever the explanation, it somehow seemed apt for the seventh-year linebacker. "This is for all my throwback players -- Rod Smith, John (Lynch), Marco Coleman," Wilson said. "I'm like Marco Coleman's little brother. They were playing in this his rookie year." Friday, November 11, 2005

Cornerback Champ Bailey Answers Your Questions - Denver
Friday, November 11, 2005 - A quarterback has to deal with many situations on the field. He has to scramble to avoid a sack and hand off to the running back. He also has the option of firing it downfield into the hands of an open receiver. The latter task is made more difficult when that receiver is covered by Broncos' cornerback Champ Bailey. So far this season, Bailey has picked off three passes in eight games for 36 yards. He turned one of the interceptions into a 25-yard touchdown earlier this season against the Chargers in San Diego. He has been the recipient of 24 errant passes for 160 return yards in his career.

Blue in the Red Zone - Denver - Andrew Mason
Thursday, November 10, 2005 - By several standards, the Broncos' defense has been mostly stellar during the first half of the season. It generates more pressure on quarterbacks than it has in recent years, thanks in part to a transfusion of ex-Cleveland Browns and the return of Trevor Pryce on the defensive front. It has powered the Broncos to 15 forced turnovers in eight games, putting them on pace for 30 combined interceptions and fumble recoveries, which would be a 50 percent increase over last year. Then the defense gets inside its own 20-yard-line and ... something happens. Only the Buffalo Bills have allowed a higher percentage of touchdowns on red-zone drives than the Broncos, who have yielded touchdowns on 68.4 percent of the drives.

Broncos-Raiders Flashback: 1962 - Denver
Thursday, November 10, 2005 - OAKLAND --The Broncos won the first meeting against the Oakland Raiders in 1960, but had to wait until 1962 before securing their first win at their division rival's stadium in snatching away a 23-6 win at Frank Youell Field to ensure a sweep of the season series. Gene Mingo provided what turned out to be all the scoring that Denver needed, drilling two first-half field goals and adding another to put Denver in front 9-0 before the offense took coomand.

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