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Broncos trade in paperbound playbooks for iPads

When John Elway retired as quarterback of the Denver Broncos in 1999, pockets of our society were still learning how to email each other.

Today, he's in charge of building Denver into a winner, and technology will play a role.

The Broncos are ditching the traditional, ultra-bulky, 500-page playbooks for iPads starting this season. The iPads will be distributed to players loaded with the week's game plan, opponent scouting reports, video and more, The Denver Post reported Monday).

"The advantage is that when they leave the building, they can take everything home with them very easily and watch tape at night and review the game-plan installation," Broncos general manager Brian Xanders told the newspaper. "This is their full-time job -- to prepare and do whatever they can to help us win each week."

The Baltimore Ravens and Tampa Bay Buccaneers have done the same, and we imagine other teams will follow suit.

Players will be allowed to use their iPads in the locker room right up until kickoff, which is a new rule for this season. The NFL doesn't allow iPads on the sideline, where they would be useful in studying still photos of plays and formations. Xanders sees it "potentially moving that way."

All of this is fitting, but don't come crying to us when some disgruntled Oakland Raiders fan finds one of these playbooks-on-an-iPad left behind at a Denver-area Starbucks. Then things will get real.

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