Mike Shanahan - Day 2

Denver Broncos head coach Mike Shanahan discusses the team's current crop of draft pick from the 2006 NFL Draft. Check out the full transcript.

On WRs Brandon Marshall (UCF) and Domenik Hixon (Akron), whom the Broncos selected in the 2006 NFL Draft
"Brandon Marshall is 6-foot-4 and a half, almost 6-foot-5, 230 pounds. We think he has the flexibility to play on the outside and inside. He could be an H-back tight end, wide receiver… We think he's a good athlete, and he has played defensive back one year and he led the team in tackles when one of his safeties went down. We feel like he has a lot of value. When you take a look at Domenik Hixon from Akron, we just liked the way he played. He's another guy that started off on defense. J.D. Brookhart, the coach at Akron, felt like their quarterback needed some speed at the wide receiver position so they switched him over, and he had two great years of catching the football. He's got great speed. he's in that 4.3 range. He makes a lot of plays after the catch, and we thought he was a good value there in the fourth round. I don't think he will be able to go until the end of May because he did break a bone in his leg, but he should be able to go on the first of June and kind of get started."

On whether WR Domenik Hixon will contribute on special teams
"He's a punt returner and kickoff returner, so it's always a plus. But we brought him in here not strictly for special teams. We brought him in to compete with our wide receivers because we thought with his speed and some of the plays he made that there was a lot of value there at that pick."

On why he thinks DE Elvis Dumervil was seleced late in the draft despite a stellar collegiate career at Louisville
"You never know what people are looking for, but we are very happy to have him we think he is a player that can play both outside and inside. He could possibly be a nose tackle, three-technique. He obviously rushed from the outside in college. He has always been an overachiever. People have always said that he is too short and can't make the plays and he seems to make the plays at every level, so he's excited about being here and we're excited about having him. He has those long arms, too. That always helps a lot of those defensive lineman."

On the possibility of DE Elvis Dumervil playing different positions
"We just view them as football players and when they compete, we'll figure where he plays."

On DE Elvis Dumervil's height (5-foot-11)
"Obviously, height helps so you would rather be 6'6" than 5'6". There's not a lot of 5'6" players in the National Football League. Height is a factor, but a guy like this has longer arms. His arms are long, so it helps in the pass rush. One of the reasons why there is not a lot of short defensive lineman is because it goes with arm length. His arm length is of a guy about 6'4" or 6'5 and probably one of the reasons he has had so much success getting to the quarterback through his high school and collegiate days."

On how he feels about the wide receiver position after the new acquisitions
"There will be a lot of competition. Any time you bring in a Pro Bowl player (WR Javon Walker) that we have a lot of confidence in, obviously, that brings a lot to the table not only the way he plays but the way he has handled himself… really a class guy. We are very happy to have Javon with us. And then you have some competition. We have lot of young guys coming in that will get a chance to compete with the guys that are here. I believe we have a lot more depth at that position than we have had in a long time, so that's a big positive right there."

On the two offensive lineman drafted: Chris Kuper (North Dakota) and Greg Eslinger (Minnesota)
"We liked both of them. We were hoping both of them would be there with that pick, but you never know. Both Kuper and Eslinger are two guys that we were hoping would be there with our pick, and very seldom does that happen. A lot of times, you are hoping for a guy to be there and he's not there and you have to go with your second third ort fourth pick. We were hoping that one would be there in the fifth round and the other would be there in the sixth round and fortunately, both were there. They are our style offensive lineman, and I think they bring good value. Kuper was a guy that played both tackle and guard. He has some flexibility there. Eslinger was a four-year starter at Minnesota and team captain and then they run the zone-blocking scheme, which is very similar to what we do, so they should fit in well."

On meeting with first-round pick QB Jay Cutler and second-round pick TE Tony Scheffler on Sunday
"I had a chance to spend a little time with Jay and Tony. Two great guys, two class guys. We were in the draft room the whole time, so I didn't get a chance to spend as much time as I would like. I got a chance to spend about 15 minutes with each guy, got a chance to talk, but with all of those draft choices going on…. One of the bad parts of bringing them in this early is you are consumed with the draft. They already took off, but they will be back in a couple of weeks and I'm sure they will get tired of seeing me very quickly (smiling)."

On if he thinks QB Jay Cutler will be able to pick up the offense fairly quickly "It's a learning experience for everybody, but he's an extremely bright guy and he's going to work at it. There's always a learning curve, but he will do whatever he can to prepare to learn it. Things come fairly quickly to him, so I don't think it will take too long. But there is nothing like the experience of going against an NFL defense. That will take some time."

On how he feels about the 2006 NFL Draft
"I feel very good about our weekend. Like we talked about yesterday, we had a couple of extra picks, and any time you have low picks in the first round or multiple picks, you should feel good about your draft. Sometimes later on in the draft, you don't get some of your needs but with the number of picks we had we felt we addressed a lot of areas and we felt very good about it."

On when the Broncos expect to have WR Javon Walker at their facility
"He's going to come in a week from tomorrow. He'll come in and start some of his rehab on the ACL, start picking up our system and be a part of our off-season program."

On whether drafting two receivers was planned
"Like I said, it's not necessarily two receivers. It could be. One guy can play receiver and can play tight end, H-back. Any time you have a guy almost 6-foot-5, 230 pounds, you get the flexibility to play him at a lot of different positions. Those are the players that have been to the Pro Bowl for us came in as wide receivers like Shannon Sharpe, Billy Smith, Byron Chamberlain and Desmond Clark. We have had a lot of success with wide receivers converting over to tight ends. Not saying that's where we'll be, but when you get guys like Brandon (Marshall) you get an opportunity to play him at a lot of different positions."

On drafting tall receivers
"You want receivers that can do everything, obviously. You want receivers that have a chance to be bump-covered that are big that can play the game. If you had your pick you would rather have a tall receiver than a short receiver you would rather have a tall guy. But that tall receiver has to be productive. There is a lot of things we ask our receivers to do, and hopefully this will pick up the competition at this position."

On whether the Broncos looked to draft a running back in the 2006 NFL Draft
"No, we did not. We weren't planning on picking up a running back. Like we said yesterday, Maroney (Lawrence, Minnesota RB) was a guy that we thought a lot of, a guy we probably would have taken because of his value and how good we thought he would fit into any zone-blocking scheme. Obviously, we stepped up and went a different direction, but he is quality back and obviously going to New England. We will get chance to play against him."

On whether the Broncos had a goal of adding more players on the team
"We have a lot of bodies right now, probably have more bodies right now than we have had in a while. When we go into free agency, we will probably pick up five guys, which is all we have room for. We've got most of the depth on our football team and most of our squad in tact right now. So we will wait until after the draft after the seventh round and try to sign a few free agents and hopefully they are the guys that we want and some of those free agents will have the opportunity to make our football team. We used to have 12 rounds, 16 rounds and now it's down to seven. There are still some quality players that are out there at the end of the day."

On the Broncos' running back situation
"We have some depth at the running back position, and we have three guys; Ron Dayne—we all know what Ron has done throughout his career, Tatum Bell, who was very productive for us last year and is going to have chance to compete. Cedric Cobbs, a guy that we thought a lot of that went to New England and we were fortunate enough to get late in the season and you still have a guy like Cecil Sapp who can play the fullback and the tailback position, so we do feel like we have some depth there."

On drafting primarily defense last year and primarily offense this year
"Sometimes you address your needs. I thought we needed some more speed, and I think we were able to do that. I felt we needed obviously, a quarterback that could come in here and compete. Very seldom are you able to get the quality quarterback that we think we got. We were able to add a few other positions. Any time you bring in a Pro Bowl player to your team that has proven himself and you are able to get a tight end that you think can run with the best of them, you feel like you added some quality depth and playmakers. Hopefully, it works out that way."



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