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My Q&A with Kyle from BroncoTalk.net
Spencer Larsen may be the only Bronco who plays both ways. But the team's most versatile player has to be Eddie Royal.
One tailback from the University of Arkansas heard his name called with the No. 4 overall pick in the NFL draft last April. Another Razorback back had to wait until No. 227, midway through the final round of the draft.
He isn't as famous as Eddie Royal, the Broncos' second-rounder draft choice, or, for that matter, Peyton Hillis, their seventh-rounder. But Ryan Clady is making at least as big of an impact.
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Having lost touch somewhat with his college buddy at Arkansas, his focus being the rigors of his own rookie season in the NFL, Darren McFadden mostly knows about Peyton Hillis' season with the Broncos on a cursory level.
Broncos quarterback Jay Cutler has wrestled the hands of time fairly well this season. Ten games in, and no quarterback in the league has thrown for more yards (806) or more touchdowns (eight) in the fourth quarter this season.
Mike Shanahan has jumped on the Nnamdi Asomugha bandwagon. Asomugha's play this season has been very under appreciated. The Oakland cornerback has been thrown at only 10 times in 10 games. He is a dominant player but because Oakland is 2-8 and one of the worst teams in the league, he doesn't get much publicity.
He didn't think it was a big deal. And even more amazing, he wasn't that nervous about it, whether he was making history or not. However, in retrospect, the sixth-round pick of the Denver Broncos is blown away in the aftermath of his accomplishment Sunday in Denver's 24-20 win.
Recruited as a virtually unknown defensive lineman out of high school, Boise State offensive tackle Ryan Clady headed to the pros after his junior year in college. He amassed a first-round grade despite a pectoral injury that prevented him from working out at the 2008 Scouting Combine (though he did well at his Pro Day). Clady was ranked by most analysts as the second best offensive lineman behind first overall pick Jake Long. The Broncos took him with the 12th overall pick and immediately set him up on the left side of what had been renowned for years as one of the NFL's best offensive lines. After preseason practice struggles with Mario Williams and DeMarcus Ware, Clady got the hang of the pro game, and hasn't looked back since. Denver currently ranks first in Adjusted Line Yards and fourth in Adjusted Sack Rate, and Clady has shown amazing abilities when flaring out against the run and directing defenders away from quarterback Jay Cutler.
The storied rivalry between the Denver Broncos and the Oakland Raiders will write yet another chapter Sunday at Invesco Field at Mile High.