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Broncos will need to be patient with Thomas, Tebow

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Dan Parr
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Posted April 22, 2010 @ 10:33 p.m. ET
By Dan Parr

Jay Cutler, Brandon Marshall — meet your replacements.

Broncos head coach Josh McDaniels, in typically gutsy and controversial fashion, traded out of both the No. 11 slot and No. 13, stockpiling picks before trading up twice to select Georgia Tech WR Demaryius Thomas 22nd overall and Florida QB Tim Tebow at No. 25.

In little over one year on the job, McDaniels has made it perfectly clear that he's willing to sacrifice players who could help him win now because they are not his type of player. In Thomas and Tebow, he found players that are going to need time — probably a full season at least — to develop before they're ready to realize their potential.

McDaniels is willing to wait.

Tebow fell into an ideal situation. He will not be asked to be a starting quarterback for at least one year and can learn from a quality QB guru in McDaniels while Kyle Orton, and possibly Brady Quinn, take the bulk of playing time. Tebow might get on the field in certain packages — like the "Wildcat" — next season, but he's not going to be put into a situation he's not prepared to handle.

Thomas apparently reminded McDaniels of Marshall, and he'll be expected to contribute from Day One. Denver's biggest need became receiver when Marshall was dealt to Miami, but Thomas, a big, long-armed, soft-handed receiver, won't replace Marshall's production in Year One.

He dropped as far as he did because of concerns from some teams over the broken foot he suffered in February and consequently had surgery to repair.


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