ENGLEWOOD — Vance Joseph balanced both taking the high road when asked about the criticism he and other Broncos’ bosses received from Demaryius Thomas while also not allowing his former receiver to get away with his rants unchecked.
Thomas, traded a week ago to the Houston Texans, made several accusations during an interview with Orange and Blue AM-760 radio Monday, including that:
*Joseph, the Broncos’ head coach told him the trade rumors “were not true.”
*Joseph and general manager John Elway were privately letting people know Thomas was the problem with the Broncos’ offense.
*Receivers coach Zach Azzanni told him to stand down from reps during the New York Jets game so rookie DaeSean Hamilton could get some playing time.
*The coaches didn’t take player input on play calls.
*And, finally, while intimating the captain vote was rigged when he wasn’t selected, Thomas said Elway asked him to change his leadership approach, so he wouldn’t be so tough on his teammates.
The last claim alone damages Thomas’ credibility. Elway would never, ever, ever tell a player or coach to go easier on another player. And Thomas is not exactly a rah-rah type. To the contrary, he’s extremely laid back and quiet.
“No. 1, we have great respect for ‘D.T.’," Joseph said during his press conference Wednesday. “Myself, John, Zach and all the guys who were included in that article, I guess you could say, or the conversation, have great respect for D.T.
“That’s first. I think, secondly, I’m disappointed to read those things about how he recalls the conversations going. It was obviously a week and a half where the rumors and gossip were flowing, and we talked about the rumors and gossip. Until something happened, we all had to focus on doing our jobs and winning football games. That was, from my end, that was discussed.
“I’m disappointed in how he remembers it, but again, we have great respect for D.T. He was a great player here and we honored him on Sunday. We didn’t win the game, he won the game. I think it’s a little frustration on his part, but I’m disappointed in how it came out because I don’t recall it being discussed that way. And that’s OK.
“The last point: We’ve got to move on. He’s got to move on and we have to move on. He’s no longer a Bronco and I can’t spend any time worrying about that. As far as reading the stuff, I’m disappointed it was presented that way. I really am.”
Paradis undergoes surgery
Broncos center Matt Paradis was undergoing season-ending surgery late Wednesday afternoon to have the fractured fibula near his right ankle prepared. The procedure, which was to involve inserting a plate in the broken bone area, was being performed by Dr. Josh Metzl, a highly regarded local orthopedic surgeon.
Entering surgery, the prognosis was Paradis would make a full recovery. He will become an unrestricted free agent in March, although the Broncos are interested in bringing him back.
“Great player, but even better person," said quarterback Case Keenum. “So, I’ve really enjoyed working with him. It’s not a fun deal. It’s an unfortunate part of our game where injuries happen. But he’s one of the best in the game at playing center. There’s no doubt in my mind. I look forward to seeing him get back on the field.”
McManus makes 'em
Yes, Brandon McManus missed from 51 yards at the buzzer Sunday against the Houston Texans. Nothing can change that outcome. What can be done is take steps so he makes the next one.
Joseph had McManus attempt eight kicks from 51 yards in front of teammates Wednesday. He was good on 8 of 8.