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Montee Ball learning from Peyton Manning on Broncos

  • By Kevin Patra NFL.com
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Montee Ball's immersion into the NFL is getting a heavy dose of Peyton Manning.

The rookie running back has spent most of his time at organized team activities working with the four-time NFL MVP on learning plays and schemes. Even at the Denver Broncos' golf outing earlier this week, the second-round pick was in Manning's foursome, which doesn't sound like too much fun.

"I can tell you Ball (and rookie tackle Vinston Painter) have been studying their playbooks and not playing much golf, which is a good thing," Manning joked Thursday, according to USA Today Sports.

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It isn't a joke that the Broncos will be counting on Ball big time this season, and Manning doesn't plan on leaning on a rookie who isn't up to speed.

"We're just kind of going through plays, going through games, getting him comfortable hearing audibles at the line of scrimmage," Manning said. "Because we are going to count on him in a big way this year. He's a rookie, but coach (John) Fox isn't going to bring him along slowly."

Ball and second-year man Ronnie Hillman are getting most of the reps during OTAs as injured veterans Willis McGahee -- who has been rumored to be on the roster bubble -- and Knowshon Moreno sit out.

Ball, with Manning's help, will get every chance to win carries and make the aging veterans on the roster expendable.

Follow Kevin Patra on Twitter @kpatra.

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