In-Depth Analysis: The 2008 Undrafted Free Agents

In-depth coverage like you've never seen before: unless, of course, you visit youtube daily.  Zap did it with the big guys Denver drafted, so I figured...why not throw some more video info out on the MHR net?  I apologize for the length of the post, but it'll give you something to look at over the next week or so.  Plus, not everyone knows all that much about these guys at this point anyway!

Thanks to styg and others for posting their thoughts and reports on these undrafted guys.  I figured I'd post my takes on these players based on what I saw in the videos.

Anthony Alridge (WR - Houston) 

Well, it turns out that the guy can pass as well.  He hits his buddy Rodriguez right on the money after a quick bootleg to the right.  Other teams have dual threats, so why can't the Broncos?  Sure, Denver may not wrap this guy up and keep him on the roster, but this guy is a dual threat who can run the ball as well.

Maybe not the speed of a top draft pick, but I think the kid knows how to follow blockers.  It seems this "wide receiver" is also a crucial "running back."  Keep in mind: the following video does feature Alridge scoring against a Pac-10 Oregon Duck squad.  Although his team played in C-USA, Alridge did get a chance to face some "power" conference teams (I guess it all depends on what you think of the Pac-10).

Maybe Denver IS looking for some more competition from the late rounds at the spot.  The hope, as always, with most late free agents is that they can contribute on special teams.  The guy CERTAINLY has speed.  A lot of the kick returns I've seen him make have been the beneficiary of good blocking.  Again, he obviously wasn't enough of a talent to get drafted, but he still may contribute.  He'll also get much better blocking on an NFL team.

Then there's "this."  I think it's great to see many of these guys "off-the-field" as well.  Here's Alridge in the East-West Shrine Game of this year.  He certainly knows how to enjoy himself (watch the speed through the hole on the TD though).

OLB Wesley Woodyard (Kentucky)

Now here's a video of the Kentucky linebackers in 07.  Let's see, who are you looking for here?  Watch for number sixteen, his name is Wesley Woodyard and he might just be a Denver Bronco.  You'll see a HUGE hit early on against Missouri I believe...that's Mr. Woodyard.  He can hit.  He also wraps up well and isn't afraid to talk some trash.  I loved the music in this video, and loved the highlights as well (both Wesley and Anthony look like they enjoy talking it up and having some fun on the field).

WR  Lorne Sam (Texas-El Paso)

As styg said, this is a guy who played at quarterback, who also had wide receiver experience.  First, check him out responding to reporters after a loss (that may give you an insight into what kind of person the UTEP player seems to be).

Sam was #3 for UTEP (the orange team in the video).  I believe that's Sam running from the QB position against Tulsa on the highlight right before the music stops in the video.  This was from the game against Tulsa, in which he caught a TD pass AND threw a TD pass (although he's not the main QB making most of the throws in this video).  Lorne seems to have a big frame and could be a tough runner as well after the catch.  With Alridge and Sam now, that's two guys that can throw as well.

K Garrett Hartley (Oklahoma)

Yes, I did get some video of our UFA kicker, but unfortunately the world is not as kind to punters.  Here's Hartley before last season.  He seems like a humble guy in the typical kicker mold (certainly not a Vanderjadgt).

As for Mitch Erickson (OT South Dakota St.), Tyler Polumbus (OT Colorado), and yet another pesky punter, Brett Kern (Toledo), you'll have to re-read styg's analysis.  You won't find too many videos on guys like those.  

  1. T Mitch Erickson (South Dakota State)  Quick footed player with marginal speed and hands, but good lower body strength.  Had 66 knockdowns and graded above 80% on his blocking for three of four years.  Has the strength to develop at RT or could be moved inside to guard with time.
  2. T Tyler Polumbus (Colorado)  A ton of potential here, Polumbus needs to (and can) add some weight, but could be a long term project to develop for RT or LT depth.  Hawkins gave this late bloomer a chance to start as a junior and was rewarded with 54 knockdowns the first year and 68 knockdowns the second, as well as seeing 8 of those blocks lead to TDs and only 1 sack getting by him.  Not a natural player, he needs to show more spark and fire, and reduce the thinking workload.  Fundamentally unsound (can't keep his pads down, doesn't protect his legs) and needs to prove his commitment.  In short, nothing a few years in Shanny's patented incubation tubes can't fix...
  3. P Brett Kern (Toledo)  An overall project punter that could end up on the practice squad.  Has amazing instincts, and grasps some of the more difficult nuances, being a good directional and placement punter.  Has good leg and could develop even more leg strength, in the meantime he has limited hangtime and a well below average kicking speed.  He can be rattled under pressure and had a lot of Ernsterish miskicks at critical moments. 

Sure, this may have been a little too much for UFA's, but anyone of these guys still could be a Bronco someday.  It helps to gain a little more of a personal viewpoint on them, even if they have no shot in the world of making the team.  Plus, it's always fun.  I apologize for the length of the post, but I hope you enjoyed it.  I'm looking forward to a great season after a nice draft (and some decent additions post-draft).


This is a Fan-Created Comment on The opinion here is not necessarily shared by the editorial staff of MHR

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