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McDaniels says disgruntled Broncos QB Cutler will not be traded

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Denver Broncos head coach Josh McDaniels, who plans to meet with Jay Cutler sometime next week, told NFL Network's Adam Schefter that the disgruntled Pro Bowl quarterback will not be traded despite rampant rumors.

Mile-high issues

People around the NFL and in Denver describe an atmosphere of growing tension and anxiety among Broncos players who are left over from the Mike Shanahan regime,

Vic Carucci writes. **More ...**

"Let me be as clear as I can about this," McDaniels said when reached at his office Tuesday afternoon. "We are not trading Jay Cutler — period."

The Broncos hope the meeting will help the two men repair their relationship, which became strained after Cutler became unhappy over trade talks. The team said the conversation between Cutler and McDaniels will take place once the quarterback returns to Denver from Nashville, Tenn.

Cutler is upset that he was the subject of trade talks for Matt Cassel, who eventually was dealt from the New England Patriots to the Kansas City Chiefs, and has suggested that his relationship with first-year coach McDaniels has become tense.

Cutler was angered during the weekend when his name came up in talks involving a three-way trade that would have sent him to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and landed Cassel in Denver.

McDaniels was the offensive coordinator last year in New England, where he tutored Cassel, a career backup who led the Patriots to an 11-5 season after Tom Brady was injured during the season opener.

Cutler, who is preparing to learn the intricate New England-style offense after working in the West Coast system during his first three NFL seasons, was miffed that McDaniels even entertained the notion of dealing him to another team. Cutler also said he believed he still would be traded.

Cutler, who has three years left on the six-year deal that he signed with the Broncos as a rookie, set numerous team records last season, including single-season passing yards (4,526), completions (384) and 300-yard games (eight).

However, Cutler and the Broncos squandered a three-game AFC West lead with three games to go, missing out on the playoffs for a third consecutive season and costing former coach Mike Shanahan his job after 14 seasons in Denver.

Cutler is 17-20 with no playoff appearances since replacing Jake Plummer as the Broncos' starting quarterback late in the 2006 season.

McDaniels, 32, was hired as the new coach in January, and the Broncos promoted Brian Xanders, 37, to general manager last month. Both of them report directly to team owner Pat Bowlen, who hasn't publicly addressed the rift between his new coach and his temperamental quarterback.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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