Maddox ready to move on with things

Tommy Maddox knows what it's like to be the new quarterback in town. In fact, he knows what it's like to be viewed as the guy who's coming in to replace a legend.

That was Maddox's situation in 1992 when the Denver Broncos selected him in the first round of the draft with the idea he would be the eventual replacement for John Elway.

Elway and head coach Dan Reeves weren't getting along and the selection of Maddox only made things worse. Elway resented the fact the Broncos were looking to replace him and wasn't all that helpful to a 20-year-old quarterback out of UCLA.

"John and I got along very well, but he wasn't too concerned with helping me out a whole lot," Maddox said. "He and (coach) Dan Reeves weren't getting along so there was a lot of tension between them, and sometimes that carried over to me a little bit. If I asked him something he gave me his input, but he wasn't real open with coming up and talking to me about it."

Maddox will find himself in a similar situation in coming weeks as he will be asked to help the man the Steelers will replace him with, Ben Roethlisberger.

Maddox met for 45 minutes with head coach Bill Cowher to discuss the situation Tuesday morning, but didn't speak to reporters until Wednesday because, "I didn't want to say anything I didn't want to say."

Maddox said he and Cowher had a good conversation – one during which the quarterback was promised a bump in pay for 2004 once Jason Gildon is released June 1.

"Until they tell me differently. I'm preparing, planning, and getting ready like I am (playing this season)," Maddox said. "I appreciated the things he had to say and I appreciated him listening to me. We had a good, long meeting."

But the selection of Roethlisberger was definitely a dose of reality for Maddox.

"Obviously, by (them) drafting somebody, you kind of need to sit down and see where they're at and where they want to go, and what part you have in it," Maddox said.

Maddox is signed for three more seasons, for $750,000 in 2004 and 2005 and a base salary of $1 million in 2006. The Steelers may also look at releasing backup quarterback Charlie Batch, who is signed through the end of this season, at a savings of about $1 million. That would allow them to use Roethlisberger as Maddox's primary backup, with Brian St. Pierre, the team's fifth-round pick in the 2003 draft, as the No. 3 QB.

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