Denver Broncos Rumors: Peyton Manning Injury Forces Bryce Petty, Brett Hundley Draft Picks? Demaryius Thomas Contract Priority Over Wes Welker, Michael Crabtree

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Apr 02, 2015 12:10 PM EDT
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Peyton Manning
Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning walks off the field following a team loss in 2014."

The Denver Broncos spent a portion of the offseason waiting to find out if Peyton Manning was in fact returning for another season. After ending 2014 with injuries, there was certainly doubt in the veteran's future as the Broncos began going through coaching changes. However, Manning put all of that talk to rest insisting that he was getting healthy and would return. However, are the Broncos began to look at the long-term picture at the quarterback position?

According to Broncos head coach Gary Kubiak, the Broncos are planning to give Brock Osweiler more playing time in 2015. The backup quarterback has barely been seen since getting drafted to Denver, but Kubiak believes that Manning's reps will be limited in order to keep him healthier for the long-term. According to the Denver Post, Manning is notorious for hogging practice reps and never likes being taken out of a game despite how big the score difference is. Kubiak noted that he has spoken to Manning and both parties believe this is the best option.

"I want to do what's best for him," Kubiak said, via The Denver Post. "I went through the same process with John (Elway) late in his career, and it was a battle for me and Mike (Shanahan) to do some things with him." "I'm the one who has to adjust and find out how I'm going to mesh everything together. We are going to run his offense and do what he does best, but it's going to be the Broncos' offense. Obviously, I love to run the ball, and I love the play pass. I love to do those things, so there is going to be a commitment there, but there is 17 years of investment in what he's done better than anybody, and we're not going to run away from that."

Just because Kubiak is planning for Osweiler to see more playing time does not mean there is a quarterback competition brewing in Denver. Osweiler is not a threat to the starting job, but Manning is not exactly young anymore and the Broncos need to be smart with how they handle it. The pressure is on Osweiler more than Manning as the backup enters the final year of his contract. With the NFL Draft around the corner Denver could opt to select a rookie to challenge for the job of the future.

The Denver Post is reporting the Broncos are bringing in quarterback options to work out before the draft. The team will likely not even glance at the idea until the third round at the absolute highest. They might leave them out of the running for players like Bryce Petty or Brett Hundley, but could land them Garrett Grayson out of Colorado State or Northwestern's Trevor Siemian. 

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