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Denver Broncos July Scouting Report
Charles Rives
7/5/2017

The first training-camp practice can take place no earlier than Thursday, July 27 -- two weeks before the preseason opener at Chicago.

The second season as a starter, third in the NFL, is the time when a player must display his long-term potential at most positions. Second year starter: QB Trevor Siemian. Third year players: G Max Garcia; TE Jeff Heureman; OLB Shane Ray; OL Ty Sambrilo; WR Bennie Fowler; TE A. J. Derby; CB Lorenzo Doss; CB Tauran Nixon (waived).

OC Mike McCoy will adjust his game plan to attack the defense's weakness on week to week basis. The skill-position players are being asked to learn multiple spots which (versatility) helps in up-tempo situations and will be crucial for running backs, tight ends, wide receivers and FB Andy Janovich, the lone fullback.

The Offensive line will probably not fully jell until some point during the regular season. With G Ron Leary moving to right guard alongside right tackle Menelik Watson, the Broncos could have some road-grading capability on the right side. Cedrick Lang is listed as a tight end, but is working with the offensive line.

"Power football" (power and counter) can be run from a variety of formations with subtle adjustments like, motioning and shifting tight ends, fullbacks, and even extra offensive linemen to confuse and get defenders out of position, wear them down and provide big shots down field.

There was solid work by the quarterback passing duo; both were better when they finished than when they began. QB Lynch's spring practice performances were highly inconsistent. Lynch isn't a finished product, but there have been signs that he's 'getting it'. He's got a big arm and has a willingness to challenge a defense deep. Lynch needs to work on the 5-yard passes that he's errant on. Lynch has a high ceiling but a low floor; QB Trevor Siemian has a decent floor, but doesn’t have much of a ceiling. "Work in progress" will apply, no matter who ends up starting Week 1.

In the red zone, most of your (route) concepts are back line (the back of the end zone). You want the quarterbacks to put enough pace on the ball, but with enough height, so that WR Demaryius Thomas can go up and catch the football. (Joseph) You work on accuracy and touch by attempting to throw the football into a large plastic wastebasket in the back of the end zone.

Denver’s schedule looks like a positive for the Bronco RBs if the offensive line is better than it was in 2016. There are two tough match ups (NYG, NE) and six favorable ones (BUF, OAK, OAK, MIA, IND, and WAS). Against the pass, there are four tough match ups against NYG, KC, NE, and KC (Week 17) and eight promising match ups against DAL, BUF, OAK, PHI, OAK, MIA, NYJ, and IND, Weeks 13 through 16 looking good against MIA, NYJ, IND, WAS.

How to overcome adversity: turn one bad play into a positive. The task isn't to avoid mistakes; but to ensure that when they happen, they become a learning tool and a source of progress.(Joseph)

Head Coach Vance Joseph recognizes the value of an inside/outside pass rush (nose tackle and outside linebacker) and having quick inside targets (like WR Isaiah McKenzie; RB De'Andre Henderson; and, WR Carlos Henderson).

The Broncos are a man-to-man coverage team, and will remain that way, but they will use zone principles to mix up their coverages and throw some different wrinkles at opponents. S Justin Simmons is a very smart player that the Broncos are counting on this year.

DE Adam Gotsis underwent minor arthroscopic surgery on his right knee-a small clean-up job which was successful..Gotsis is expected to return the first week of training camp. He provides depth at defensive end behind Derek Wolfe (neck) and Jared Crick. The Broncos added more veteran experience to their secondary signing CB Chris Lewis-Harris and waiving CB Taurean Nixon. They also beefed up its interior defensive line by adding veterans and CFA Tyrique Jarrett from the University of Pittsburgh 6'3, 335 who projects well as a double-team eating nose tackle.

Some in the public see the middle linebacker position as far more of a need than the Broncos do. As far back as March, Head Coach Vance Joseph said that ILB Todd Davis was the type of player he liked at inside linebacker. ILB Brandon Marshall, could break out not only as a linebacker, but as a team leader.

The OTA/minicamp work this year saw a few more team (11-on-11) periods and slightly fewer seven-on-seven periods. The tempo was also a bit faster.

The Bronco players will have a six-week break after mini-camp to go home and train during the next five weeks. Joseph wants his players to do two things: retain what they've learned on the field and be responsible in any situations that could lead to potential trouble.

The first training-camp practice can take place no earlier than Thursday, July 27 -- two weeks before the preseason opener at Chicago.

The Broncos' 2017 training camp will start July 27, with 12 practices open to the public.

DENVER BRONCOS 2017 TRAINING CAMP PRACTICE SCHEDULE

DATE

DAY

TIME

July 27

Thursday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

July 28

Friday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

July 29

Saturday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

July 30

Sunday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

July 31

Monday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Aug. 2

Wednesday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Aug. 3

Thursday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Aug. 4

Friday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Aug. 5

Saturday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Aug. 7

Monday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Aug. 8

Tuesday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Aug. 12

Saturday

9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

 

FANTASY OUTLOOK

Quarterback remains uncertain and the Broncos’ must find a functional running game with a new offensive line. The running game has personnel and depth chart uncertainty. RB C. J. Anderson doesn’t offer an especially safe floor because his starting job is in doubt. It’s conceivable McCoy’s gap-blocking run game will better suit RB DeVonte Booker’s skills. RB Jamaal Charles is trying to return from surgeries on both knees. A deep sleeper is rookie RB De’Angelo Henderson, a 5-foot-8, 208-pound Ahmad Bradshaw lookalike with 4.48 speed.that he doesn't lose making cuts. Both WR Demaryius Thomas and WR Emmanuel Sanders are high-floor investments because of the poor running game and a lack of passing alternatives. Thomas’ patented tunnel and bubble screens are coming back and he offers security at WR15-WR17. WR Emmanuel Sanders fell seven targets shy of Thomas’ 2016 total but arguably outplayed Thomas on the field. If forced to decide between the two, Sanders is the better investment at WR31-WR34. Both Sanders and Thomas will be on the wrong side of 30 by the end of the season and Thomas' contract contains no guaranteed money beyond 2017. Rookie slot WR Carlos Henderson 5'11,199, breaks tackles and is a more explosive Golden Tate/ Pierre Garcon if he realize his ceiling (unlikely in 2017). The rest of the wide receivers are unexciting holdovers. TE A. J. Derby is the likeliest candidate for targets as three different coaching staffs have trained TE Virgil Green to be a better blocker than pass catcher. Rookie TE Jake Butt could prove to be the future at tight end, but he is recovering from his second right ACL tear and may not be ready for Week 1. The defense remains a top fantasy unit, especially if the run defense is improved. The strength of the offense will determine strong legged K Brandon McManus' value.

End.

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