Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Broncos coach: Every option on table
By John Clayton ESPN.com
DANA POINT, Calif. -- Even though he would be the point person in a potential Jay Cutler trade, Broncos coach Josh McDaniels has focused his attention on improving his relationship with his Pro Bowl quarterback instead of seeking offers.
In speaking to the media for the first time Tuesday since the rift between the two became public, McDaniels reiterated Cutler is the Broncos' quarterback. Still, McDaniels says no options -- including trades -- are being ruled out.
"We're looking forward to getting him back. We're committed to him," McDaniels said. "I'll continue to do what we can do to try to affect our relationship positively from this point forward."
Their relationship became strained last month when McDaniels failed to inform Cutler about trade talks in which the Broncos showed interest in Matt Cassel. Cassel wound up being traded by New England to Kansas City, and Cutler asked to be traded.
McDaniels said there has been communication between both sides in the past couple of days, but the coach would not elaborate. Cutler apparently has no intention of attending Denver's voluntary offseason conditioning program.
Reportedly, as many as 10 teams have expressed interest in acquiring Cutler, but McDaniels said messages have been left in Denver with team management and not with him directly. Talks, according to McDaniels, have not heated up with any interested team during the owners' meetings.
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"Nobody's contacted me," McDaniels said. "Nobody's texted me, nobody's e-mailed me. And nothing is going to happen on our football team unless those decisions go through me.''
Asked point-blank if he thought Cutler would be a Bronco five weeks from now -- a period that would take teams beyond the draft in late April -- McDaniels answered in the affirmative.
"I understand there are things we have to work on toward fixing our relationship, but I'm optimistic about those things and where it's going to go," McDaniels said. "As long as we are both committed to each other, then he absolutely will be our quarterback."
John Clayton is an ESPN.com senior NFL writer. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.