INDIANAPOLIS — Broncos executive V.P. of football operations John Elway was the first to the podium Friday at the Scouting Combine, and he had to know what was coming when he asked reporters "Who's going to start it off?"
He didn't have to wait more than a second for a question about his star quarterback.
"Tim Tebow, your thoughts?" a Broncos beat reporter offered.
"What took so long?" Elway said.
He continued as the laughter in the room died down.
"You know what, we're happy with his year last year," Elway said. "Obviously, to finish 9-9 and get a playoff win, which we hadn't done in several years, and for him to come in after (we started) 1-4, he added a great spark for us. We really had some good things happen to us. I was really happy with his progress. I know Tim's going to work hard this offseason.
"We're hoping that he's going to be the guy for a long, long time."
While the commitment to Tebow as the starter is firm, the Broncos are looking to add two quarterbacks to their roster this offseason, and they don't necessarily have to be in the same mold as Tebow.
"We're going through that process now and we kind of have to let it happen," Elway said. "I don't know that we're looking for one like Tim or you're ordinary drop-back (passer) or somewhere in between. I think until we find out the interest out there, it's going to be hard to fill those spots.
"When I look at Tim and I look at our offense, we can do it with either one, whether it be a guy like Tim or if it's more of a drop-back type guy. We feel like either one is going to be able to fit."
Elway looked forward, and back, Friday. One year ago he was just starting out as an NFL executive and he reflected on a whirlwind debut season at the helm.
"I think the key thing was getting John Fox hired," he said. "It was a tremendous help for us to change the culture in the building. Any time you go through a streak like we went through, to me the hardest thing to change is the culture and to try to get the winning mentality back in the players' minds. I think that that's what John did a tremendous job with last year."
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