New Broncos coach John Fox says he’s a long way off from choosing a starting quarterback for 2011, and he wants to get a first-hand look at Tim Tebow and Kyle Orton on the practice field before he makes any decisions about which one is leading his team.
“Just like any position, they’ll compete and we’ll go from there,” Fox said of his quarterbacks in an interview on the Dan Patrick Show. “It’s too early for me to say. . . . I’m going to evaluate guys on grass and we’ll have to see when we get those opportunities.”
Fox’s comments point to one of the disadvantages that new coaches will have if the league’s labor uncertainty leads to less offseason work for NFL teams: Coaches in their first seasons with a new team simply won’t know their players very well if they don’t have the usual schedule of organized team activities, minicamps and training camps.
Fox also wouldn’t commit to the team giving cornerback Champ Bailey, whose contract is up, a big new deal.
“It’s going to be tough. I have great respect for Champ. He’s a great player,” Fox said. “But we’re going to have to go through this process and this year’s process might be a little more unusual than some.”
And Fox wasn’t ready to announce that Jim Mora will be his defensive coordinator, although all indications are that he will.
“I don’t want to jinx anything,” Fox said of Mora. “I think we’re putting together a real good staff and that would be a part of it.”