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Broncos cut ties with secondary coach Ron Milus

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Broncos cut ties with secondary coach Ron Milus

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) The Denver Broncos have promoted Cory Undlin to secondary coach, replacing Ron Milus, who had coached defensive backs under John Fox for the last four seasons.

However, Milus isn't being made the scapegoat for the Broncos' stunning surrender of that 70-yard touchdown pass with 31 seconds left that led to their 38-35 loss to the Baltimore Ravens in double-overtime last weekend, a person with the team told The Associated Press on Tuesday night.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the club doesn't speak publicly about coaches' contracts.

Milus' contract wasn't renewed. He was in his second stint with the Broncos, who hadn't allowed a 300-yard passer all season before giving up 331 to Joe Flacco last weekend. Flacco also threw TD passes of 59 and 32 yards to Torrey Smith, who repeatedly got behind 12-time Pro Bowler Champ Bailey.

The Ravens faced a third-and-3 from their own 30 in the final minute when Jacoby Jones raced past cornerback Tony Carter and hauled in Flacco's heave that safety Rahim Moore badly misjudged.

After the game, Moore put the loss squarely on his shoulders, saying, ``When it's all said and done, the safeties can't let nothing get behind them and I did. ... I misjudged it. It actually floated a little farther than I thought it was.''

Fox said, ``I've never believed in it's one guy, one play. It obviously was a big play.''

Fox said the players were so stunned by the gaffe that he decided to play for overtime and had Peyton Manning take a knee instead of trying to move into field goal range with two timeouts and 31 seconds to work with.

Fox has taken a lot of heat for that decision but said this week he stands by it and ``I'd do it again 10 times.'' His boss, John Elway, concurred with the call to play for overtime, where Manning's interception led to the game-deciding field goal in the 77th minute of the longest game in the NFL in 26 years.

Undlin, 41, spent last season as the quality control coach for Denver's defense, which finished third in the league against both the run and the pass. He also coached DBs in Jacksonville under Jack Del Rio when Denver's defensive coordinator was the Jaguars' head coach.

``I am confident he will be a great fit and get the most out of our secondary,'' Fox said, adding, ``I appreciate all of Ron Milus' hard work and wish him the best.''

Undlin coached linebackers in 2009 in Jacksonville and DBs there in 2010-11. He's also worked with the secondary in both Cleveland and New England.

Earlier in the day, the Broncos lost versatile offensive coordinator Mike McCoy, who was hired as head coach of the San Diego Chargers, marking the second straight season a top Denver assistant was hired away by an AFC West rival. The Raiders grabbed defensive coordinator Dennis Allen a year ago.

On Monday, Fox said he was prepared for McCoy's expected departure.

``No different than when Dennis left a year ago. I think that worked out all right,'' he said. ``And I don't have any reasons to think any different.''

Possible candidates to replace McCoy include Broncos quarterbacks coach Adam Gase and Tom Moore, Manning's old coordinator in Indianapolis.

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Best case, worst case scenario for WR Steve Smith Sr.

Best case, worst case scenario for WR Steve Smith Sr.

Clifton Brown and Bo Smolka are taking turns putting 25 key Ravens under the microscope leading up to veterans reporting to training camp. They’ll speculate on a best-case, worst-case scenario for at least one player every day, concluding with quarterback Joe Flacco on July 25.

UNDER THE MICROSCOPE: Steve Smith Sr., 37-year-old wide receiver

Best-case scenario for Smith:

He enjoys a typical 1,000-yard season, and he remains the Ravens’ top receiver.

Why it could happen:

It’s dangerous to bet against Smith making a full recovery from Achilles surgery, even in the twilight of his career. Few athletes perform with more of a chip on their shoulder than Smith, who is always driven to prove doubters wrong. He’s a technician at route running, he studies film diligently, and he’s a master at using his body and hands to ward off defenders. Smith never relied on pure speed to be a top receiver. So even if he’s a tad less explosive, Smith has the talent to end his career playing at a high level.

Worst-case scenario for Smith:

Smith’s body betrays him, and the Ravens’ depth at wide receiver reduces his playing time and role.

Why it could happen:

Father Time is undefeated, and may finally be calling for Smith. The older an athlete gets, the harder it gets to recover from injuries. With their deep group of tight ends, and the addition of wide receivers Mike Wallace and rookie Chris Moore, the Ravens may not be as dependent on Smith as they have been. Even if Smith is healthy, his role in the offense might be less prominent.

RELATED: FLACCO HAS LONG ODDS FOR MVP

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Flacco has same MVP odds as Winston and Mariota

Flacco has same MVP odds as Winston and Mariota

Joe Flacco has been a Super Bowl MVP and has won 10 playoff games. Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston have played one NFL season.

However, all three of those quarterbacks have been given the same odds (100/1) of winning next season’s MVP award by sportsbook Bovada.lv.

People who think Flacco is an elite quarterback may view that as disrespect. But the Bovada.lv odds throw even more shade at Flacco.

Sixteen quarterbacks are given a better chance of winning the MVP award in 2016 than Flacco. Some of the names you would expect, like Aaron Rodgers, who is the favorite at 4/1, followed by Ben Roethlisberger (7/1), Cam Newton (15/2), Russell Wilson (8/1), and Tom Brady (9/1).

But do Blake Bortles (66/1) of the Jaguars or Brock Osweiler of the Texans (66/1) really have a better chance of winning the MVP than Flacco? According to Bovada.lv they do. That’s also an indication that not much is expected from the Ravens overall after their 5-11 season. The better your team does, the better your chances of winning the MVP.

Newton won the MVP last year starting at 50/1 odds. So if you believe in Flacco and the Ravens, those 100/1 MVP odds for Flacco may look like an enticing play.

RELATED: Can Dumervil lead a rebirth of Ravens's pass rush?

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Ravens under the Microscope: Best case, worst case for DE Elvis Dumervil

Ravens under the Microscope: Best case, worst case for DE Elvis Dumervil

As we countdown to training camp, Clifton Brown and Bo Smolka will take turns putting 25 key Ravens under the microscope this month.

They’ll speculate on a best-case, worst-case scenario for at least one player every day. They’ll begin with players looking to carve out a role, or a roster spot. They’ll end with the Ravens’ most important players, concluding with quarterback Joe Flacco on July 25. 

RELATED: DUMERVIL DESPERATE TO GET A RING

UNDER THE MICROSCOPE: Elvis Dumervil, 32-year-old linebacker

Best-case scenario:

Dumervil is among the NFL’s sack leaders and spearheads a rebirth of the Ravens’ pass rush.

Why it could happen: 

Dumervil equaled his career high with 17 sacks as recently as 2014. He keeps himself in great shape, and says he feels great after offseason foot surgery. If Terrell Suggs returns healthy, Dumervil won’t have to face as many double-teams, or play as many snaps. Dumervil looks at last season’s results as unacceptable – just six sacks for him, and just five wins for the Ravens. He’s motivated to double both totals – at least.

Worst-case scenario:

Dumervil is no longer an elite pass rusher

Why it could happen:

Dumervil entered the league in 2006, and at some point the wear and tear will start to show. If young pass rushers like Za’Darius Smith, Kamalei Correa, and Branson Kaufusi  are effective, Dumervil could see his role diminish as the season wears on.

RELATED: BEST & WORST CASE SCENARIO FOR JIMMY SMITH