Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Kansas City claims quarterback Kyle Orton off waivers

On Tuesday, the Denver Broncos waived veteran quarterback Kyle Orton, ending his stint with the team. According to a league source, Orton and his agent, David Dun, requested that the Broncos waive Orton after learning that Chicago quarterback Jay Cutler broke his thumb last week.

The Broncos obliged, and placed Orton on waivers. The Bears, Dallas Cowboys and Kansas City Chiefs all placed waiver claims on Orton. The Chiefs were awarded Orton because they had the worst record of the three teams that placed a claim.

Orton struggled early in the season, throwing eight touchdown passes and seven interceptions while going 1-4 through Denver's first five games. Against the San Diego Chargers in Week Five, Orton was benched at halftime in favor of second year quarterback Tim Tebow.

Tebow rallied the Broncos to a narrow 24-29 defeat and has kept the starting job. Since the loss to the Chargers, Tebow and the Broncos have gone 4-1; San Diego has gone 0-5. The Broncos play San Diego again this week, on the road.

The Chiefs found themselves in need of a quarterback after starter Matt Cassel broke his hand, an injury sustained when his hand was wedged between his chest and the helmet of Broncos rookie linebacker Von Miller on November 13th. On Tuesday, the same day Denver waived Kyle Orton, the Kansas City placed Cassel on injured reserve.

Orton will return to Denver on January 1st when the Chiefs play the Broncos in Week 17. The game could have playoff implications, as both the Chiefs and Broncos are in the thick of the AFC West race.

Tim Tebow and Brady Quinn are now the only two active quarterbacks on Denver's roster. Undrafted rookie Adam Weber is also on the practice squad, and may be activated by the club.

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