Around the AFC: Kubiak & Del Rio

  • Repeating as a Super Bowl champion, the state of the roster, and of course Peyton Manning's future were the top questions that Broncos Coach Gary Kubiak faced at the NFL Scouting Combine, but there were a few other topics he hit on as well.**

Kubiak on if left and right tackles are equally important:** "I think what you see in our league is if you have a staple at left tackle, a Pro Bowl player, you can help the other player a lot in certain situations," said Kubiak. "If you're not in that (situation), it's hard to help two guys, especially with great pass rushers and defensive coordinators who move people around. That makes it more difficult. Obviously tackles are extremely important positions. I think if you're going to throw the football and protect the quarterback it's a very important position."Kubiak on his feeling regarding expanding instant replay:
"Whatever gets it right," said Kubiak. "Whatever we can do to get as close to being exactly right on game day, I think everybody wants without slowing the game down. Without slowing the pace of the game down and having big delays but trying to get things right, I think we're all in favor of that."

  • Raiders Coach Jack Del Rio faced similar questions as Kubiak at the NFL Scouting Combine as far as the team's roster, but was also asked about the Raiders future in Oakland as well. Be he also weighed in on a variety of other topics.

Del Rio on if it's harder to evaluate offensive linemen now than it was 5-10 years ago based on the offenses colleges run:
"What you see are fewer and fewer college offensive linemen getting in three-point stances and doing some of the combination blocks we do in the NFL," said Del Rio. "There are more and more of the guys playing in a two-point stance and not used to coming back to a huddle. There is a little bit of development once you get to the league. I think that's the biggest part of it. You're still getting big, strong, talented young men with feet to move and the ability to play. But maybe their development isn't as far along as it was when colleges were more closely aligned with what we're doing in the NFL."

Del Rio on if defensive linemen are more focused on containment rather than rushing now:
"No. We're looking to rush and disrupt quarterbacks. We don't want them to be comfortable back there or sit back, pat the ball and go to different reads. The more you can eliminate that time, the more effective and efficient your defense will be."

Del Rio on if he is in favor of expanding the coach's challenges:
"Bill Belichick brought up a great point in our owner's meetings last year about allowing a coach to challenge a play if he decided it was worthy," said Del Rio. "I'm in favor of that. If we have an opportunity to get something right, let's use that change to get it right. That's what he was saying. If it's wrong and we have a chance to make it right with undisputable evidence, then let's do it. I'm supportive of something along those lines. We'll see where it goes."

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