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- Shocker: Mike Bell Leads Broncos

Chris Pokorny August 7, 2006
Chris Pokorny
PFC Owner & Writer

Tell Chris your opinion.

At this point in time, the Denver Broncos have a starting running back, and his name is Bell. Guess what though? It's not Tatum, it's Mike. Broncos' head coach Mike Shanahan has currently placed rookie running back Mike Bell at the top of his depth chart, putting him ahead of Tatum Bell and Ron Dayne, who are still in the running for the job.

"This is a dream come true," said M. Bell. "For him (Shanahan) to give me the opportunity to be the starter on a great organization like this is a blessing."

M. Bell is an undrafted rookie from out of Arizona. With the way the Broncos have shown that they can just slap a running back into their system and watch them gain 1,000 yards, you never know what M. Bell can do. The announcement came as a shocker to M. Bell, who was nervous after Shanahan told him that he needed to see him.

"He's been real impressive," Shanahan said. "It is very close, and it could change day by day, week by week, but we felt like Mike deserves a chance to work with the first team and take a look to see if he can keep it."

However, M. Bell has to feel pretty good knowing that he will be starting this Friday's preseason game against the Detroit Lions. Even though he started camp as the fourth-string running back, the Broncos never had a true No. 1 back heading into camp after the departure of Mike Anderson.

"A lot of people in this situation will get complacent, but Ron and Tatum are great backs so they're going to be pushing and pushing, so I've got to keep pushing and pushing," said M. Bell. "Ultimately, it's going to be good for the team's success."

PFC Analysis: Some people feel that this move was made to light a fire under Tatum or Dayne, but that doesn't seem to be the case. We've seen the Broncos utilize whatever running back they have the past several years, and if Mike Bell produces during the preseason, he will be their opening day starter. Of course, this makes any Denver running back a very risky fantasy pick until an "official" starter is named. For all we know, Mike Bell could be a third-stringer by next week again.

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