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Sunday, August 14, 2011
Denver Broncos believe in Kyle Orton

By Bill Williamson

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- It is obvious if you spend any time at the Denver Broncos’ training camp that the quarterback situation is the furthest thing from the team’s mind as it prepares to host Oakland on ESPN’s "Monday Night Football" on Sept. 12 in the season opener.

The Broncos have plenty of preparation to do, but it is clear the team feels it is set at quarterback with Kyle Orton.

I talked to some players who say that, as far as they are concerned, Orton is the unquestioned starter of the team. And nothing should change. It appeared the team would give second-year quarterback Tim Tebow a chance to take over when Denver tried to trade Orton to the Miami Dolphins in late July. The deal stalled when Orton couldn’t agree to a contract with the Dolphins.

Since then, Orton has easily separated himself from Tebow, who is in a bigger battle with Brady Quinn for the backup job.

The feeling I got from players is that they feel Orton’s veteran leadership and his strong training camp has earned the confidence of the team.

Players like Tebow, but this a team that is desperate to win after going 4-12 last season. Players have a difficult time buying in the theory of giving Tebow a chance to grow on the job and have Orton sit.

They want the player who gives them the best immediate chance to win and it’s clear in Denver that is Orton. Don’t expect coach John Fox to suddenly change course and give the job to Tebow. That wouldn’t sit well in the locker room. Players believe Tebow has a chance to be a solid starter someday, but Orton is a solid starter right now.