Mike Klis, KUSA
Published 7:53 p.m. ET Nov. 7, 2018
Houston Texans wide receiver Demaryius Thomas (87) and wide receiver Sammie Coates Jr. (18) talk before a game against the Denver Broncos at Broncos Stadium at Mile High.
(Photo: Isaiah J. Downing, USA TODAY Sports)
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — 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.
“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.”
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