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Broncos OC: Case Keenum's workload paying dividends

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Quarterback Case Keenum hasn't taken long to assimilate in the Denver Broncos' offense.

Keenum, who signed a two-year, $36 million deal during free agency, is paid as a starter. And he has conducted himself as such while the Broncos transition to a new scheme under offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave.

"Case is working hard," Musgrave said Thursday, via the Broncos' official website. "It's a new system for him; it's a new system for everybody. Case is getting -- exclusively -- all the reps with the ones. We're not splitting them like you would if you didn't have an established starter, so he's getting more concentrated work, and it's paying dividends."

Musgrave's praise of Keenum is noteworthy when considering what the Broncos endured in 2017 without an established starter.

Denver finished the past season ranked 20th in passing en route to a 5-11 record after going through quarterbacks Trevor Siemian, Brock Osweiler and Paxton Lynch. The trio combined to throw 19 touchdowns, which ranked 25th in the league.

But with Keenum locked in as the clear No. 1, the team's receiving options can focus on building chemistry with the quarterback during organized team activities.

"You don't have to worry about getting reps with multiple guys," wide receiver Demaryius Thomas said after Tuesday's OTA practice. "Your focus is to get reps with Case and only Case. To build that connection. So far, so good."

Tight end Jake Butt echoed Thomas' assessment of Keenum.

"Obviously, Case is our leader, our head man and the voice of the offense," Butt said. "He's doing a great job commanding us, getting everybody lined up, making the right reads and making the good throws."

While players often shine during the no-contact phase of the offseason workout program, it is a good sign for the Broncos that Keenum has taken command ahead of training camp.

Should Keenum carry that momentum into the 2018 regular season, the retooled Broncos could find themselves back in the mix in the AFC West after missing the playoffs for two straight seasons.

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