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Report: Broncos wanted to start coach Rob Calabrese after Covid-19 wiped out QB room

The Broncos quarterback room is a mess due to Covid-19.

A Denver Broncos helmet on the ground before the game against the Tennessee Titans at Empower Field at Mile High. Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos are expected to start practice squad wide receiver Kendall Hinton at the quarterback position in Week 12 when they face the New Orleans Saints. The team’s entire quarterback depth chart is on the Covid-19 injured reserve list due to Jeff Driskel testing positive and the rest of the room being considered high-risk close contacts.

Hinton played three years of quarterback at Wake Forest before converting to wide receiver. The team could not sign an outside player to play because the NFL’s Covid-19 protocol requires a new signing to wait five days before joining the team.

The Broncos had a couple contingencies in mind. Per multiple reports, they asked the NFL if they could push the game to Tuesday, which would give their quarterback room time to clear the Covid-19 IR list. They also asked about activating offensive quality control coach Rob Calabrese to play quarterback, per Adam Schefter.

The NFL rejected the former because any postponements are for extensive outbreaks across the roster and not just one position group. The league rejected the latter because they don’t want teams using coaching staffs being storage areas for potential players.

Calabrese played quarterback at Central Florida, appearing in 34 games over four seasons in five years. He has been the Broncos offensive QC coach for the past two years and was the OC at Wagner College.