Broncos land the linebacker they've had their eyes on

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The Denver Broncos have had their eyes on Jamie Winborn for a long time and on Wednesday they finally got their first up-close look at him.

With only five linebackers on the roster and one of them, Louis Green, injuring his neck in the opener, the Broncos signed the free agent outside linebacker who was released by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sept. 1.

``We've liked him for a number of years,'' coach Mike Shanahan said. ``We like his play, we like who he is as a linebacker going back to San Francisco. We've had our eyes on him a long time. We were happy he was released by Tampa so we could go get him.''

Winborn has had his sights set on Denver for a while, too.

``I just figured it's a good spot, a good, solid team, always making a good run, so it would be a nice place to go,'' he said.

Winborn, who packs 242 pounds on his 5-11 frame, is a seventh-year pro who played for the 49ers from 2001-05, where he was a second round pick out of Vanderbilt, and also in Jacksonville and Tampa Bay.

Last year, he posted a career-best 14 special teams tackles for the Bucs.

The Broncos put him at both outside linebacker spots Wednesday and will also play him on special teams. They'd love for him to adapt quickly because they're thin at linebacker and could sure use the depth on Sunday when the Oakland Raiders visit Invesco Field.

Winborn was blunt when talking about whether he'd be ready to contribute that soon, however.

``I don't know. I can't say and I wouldn't want to give you all any false information,'' Winborn said. ``If they have something they think I'm able to do without jeopardizing the work of the team, then I'll do it. But I don't even know what the plans are right now. I don't even know if I'll be dressing or not.''