Broncos sign QB Grayson to practice squad, promote McKenzie to active roster

Garrett Grayson, the former CSU player, becomes Denver's third quartertback; McKenzie returns to active roster

Garrett Grayson is coming back to familiar territory.

Grayson, who played at Colorado State in Fort Collins, was signed to the Denver Broncos practice squad Thursday and will serve as the team's third quarterback. He replaces Chad Kelly, who was released Wednesday following his arrest on suspicion of criminal trespass.

Wide receiver Isaiah McKenzie was promoted to the active roster to take the place of Kelly.

Grayson, 27, was a third-round pick of New Orleans in 2015 after throwing 55 touchdown passes and 18 interceptions in his last two seasons with the Colorado State Rams. He spent two years on the Saints' roster before being cut. He was signed late in 2017 by Atlanta but was cut Sept. 1

McKenzie, who had a fumble-prone stint as Denver's return man last year, is insurance if DaeSean Hamilton can't play Sunday against Kansas City. Hamilton has not practiced this week because of a knee injury.

Transcript of Garrett Grayson's meeting with the Denver Broncos press corps on Thursday:

On receiving the phone call that the Broncos were signing him to the practice squad:

“I actually just walked in my door back in Nashville. Me and my best friend started a real estate company and so we had just gotten done with some meetings. I just walked through the door and my phone started going crazy. My agent was calling, my dad was calling, everybody. I was obviously very excited and happy to get the opportunity.”

On if he was a Broncos fan during his time at Colorado State University:

“Growing up, I actually had a hard time cheering for them because my uncle was a huge fan, so I always kind of cheered against his teams. But, I was a big Peyton Manning fan, so once Peyton came out here, I kind of hopped on the bandwagon and came down here and watched as much as I could and tried to learn from afar.”

On what he hopes to prove:

“Just prove that I deserve to be here at the end of the day. I think having been behind two future Hall of Fame quarterbacks (Drew Brees in New Orleans and Matt Ryan in Atlanta), I think that helps me in the long run. Just seeing how they prepare, how they go about their daily business and just being a true pro. I think that helped me a ton and it’s something, I’m sure, I don’t even realize how much I learned from that. I’m very grateful for that and hopefully it shows while I’m here.”

On how he stayed ready while not on a team’s roster:

“My roommate out there was one of my receivers at CSU (Thomas Coffman), so we kind of just took it and ran with it. We threw as much as we could, studied film as much as we could and tried to relive the glory days, I guess, if you want to say that.”

On his first impression of QB Case Keenum:

“Great dude. He’s kind of taken me under his wing. Any questions that I’ve had, he’s answered honestly and truthfully and I’m excited to learn from him. He’s kind of bounced around and seems like he’s finally found a home now, so I’m kind of excited to ask him how he kept his head on straight, stayed focused and kept his goal at the top and made sure he achieved it at the end of the day.”

On how much interaction he had with the Broncos during the pre-draft process:

“I had a little bit, not a ton. I think at the end of the day nobody really wants to show their hand. I got drafted by the Saints, but I didn’t talk to them until two days before the draft. It’s a crazy business but we’re all part of it and excited to be here.”