Ramsey ready if necessary

The Denver Broncos won't know until later this week if Cutler will play. If the Broncos have to turn to Patrick Ramsey at quarterback this week, they aren't too nervous about it.

If the Denver Broncos have to turn to Patrick Ramsey at quarterback this week, they aren't too nervous about it.

Ramsey played well under the circumstances against Detroit on Sunday after Jay Cutler was knocked out of the game with a leg injury. Facing a tough pass rush, Ramsey had 262 yards passing.

"I like the way he handles himself," Broncos coach Mike Shanahan said. "To go into that situation, on the road with that type of pass rush, to be as cool, calm and collected as he was under the circumstances, I thought he did a heck of a job."

Denver won't know until later this week if Cutler will play. They aren't sure how his bruised lower leg will respond with a few days rest, but were happy that there were no broken bones or stress fractures. The Broncos haven't ruled him out of Sunday's game.

Ramsey said he will be prepared if called upon. Ramsey had two bad turnovers against the Lions that were returned for touchdowns. But if he had the benefit of starter's reps in practice during the week, he could probably turn in a solid performance against Kansas City on Sunday.

Ramsey, a former first-round pick, was signed this offseason as insurance in case Cutler went down and a veteran mentor for the second-year quarterback.

"If he's not able to play it's my job to go in there and play, and play well," Ramsey said.

PLAYER NOTES

--QB Jay Cutler has bounced back quickly from injuries before, and never missed a game in college due to injury as a four-year starter at Vanderbilt. So even though Cutler has a badly bruised lower leg, it's not out of the question that he could play this week.

--QB Patrick Ramsey seems to have a good feel for the Broncos' offense, despite being in his first year in Denver. If Ramsey has to play Sunday, Denver probably wouldn't have to scale much of its playbook back.

--RB Travis Henry has been banged up most of this season, and perhaps the injuries are taking a toll. Henry hasn't broken 100 yards since Week 4. Denver needs him to have a big game at Kansas City in a venue the Broncos usually don't play well at.

--RB Selvin Young had 12 yards on six carries against Detroit. Like most rookies, Young has issues with consistency, but he is capable of making a big play.

--WR Brandon Marshall wasn't affected by having Patrick Ramsey at quarterback. He had nine catches for 96 yards, and his day would have been much better had he not had an uncharacteristic stretch where he dropped three passes on one drive.

--WR Brandon Stokley didn't have a big game against Detroit but had a late touchdown. The Broncos have been pleased with Stokley this year, and he hasn't shown any ill effects from his Achilles' tendon injury late last year.

--WR Glenn Martinez has bruised ribs. He will be monitored this week. He has become a surprising contributor as a third receiver and punt returner.

--TE Tony Scheffler was targeted often by Patrick Ramsey. He is a big part of Denver's passing game and should remain one even if quarterback Jay Cutler misses some time with an injury.

--K Jason Elam missed a field goal in the first half against Detroit, then didn't have another opportunity when the game became a blowout in the second half. The miss was Elam's first since the second week of the season.

--S John Lynch will be watched during the week to see if he is back at full strength and can play Sunday. Lynch missed Denver's last game because he was still recovering from a stinger.

--CB Karl Paymah played a lot as Denver's nickel cornerback in passing situations against Detroit because Domonique Foxworth, the normal nickel back, remained at safety full time. Paymah was in coverage on a touchdown by Mike Furrey, but the Broncos didn't have much of a pass rush on the play.

--DE Simeon Rice knocked down a pass after getting a good rush against Lions quarterback Jon Kitna. Because of the season-ending injury to rookie end Jarvis Moss, Rice will likely be a regular all season. The Broncos held him out of a couple of games earlier this year because they didn't feel his shoulder was completely healthy.



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