The first day of Training Camp 2008 is in the books and has already left us with more questions. Each day I'll give my thoughts on the previous day's work and try to sum up what we saw, what we heard, and what we read.
1. Call The Exterminator -- The injury bug is back, that is, if you thought it had left in the first place. Before the first ball was snapped we found out the DT Carlton Powell would likely miss the season with a torn Achilles tendon. Then, reserve WR Edell Sheppard injured his knee and missed the afternoon session. If one reason could be targeted for the team's play in 2007 it would be injuries. Even Jay Cutler's diabetes is injury related in some ways. While the team does possess depth in several areas, I wouldn't term depth as a team strength. Every team tries to avoid getting hurt in Training Camp, for the Broncos it is even more important.
2. A Couple of Starters Out of Shape -- Brandon Marshall has been in the news most of the off-season for all the wrong reasons. We'll likely find out early next week his status for the early part of the season. On the field, Marshall is also making news looking "gassed" after every pass route. Sure, Marhsall's arm injury inhibited his off-season training, but he was cleared to run in April. Despite not being able to catch a football, there is no excuse for Marshall to come into camp out of shape.
Starting RT Montrae Holland is even worse off than Marshall. Coming to camp heavier than the team's required reporting weight, Holland will have to work out on his own until he gets the weight off. With the O-Line one of the big questions coming into the season the fact that one of the known starters will not be working with the group early in camp should not be overlooked. Holland played great last year, was rewarded with a contract extension, and talked during the off-season how he was as strong as ever. Hopefully this is just a hiccup for Holland and not an indictment of his work ethic. The Shanahan Doghouse is not a place you want to spend any time and it appeared Holland might be the first to take residence.
3. Diabetes Be Damned -- Sure, I was confident that Jay Cutler would be able to come into camp and play well despite being diagnosed with Diabetes, but until he actually puts the pads on and get to work you never can be sure. After 1 day of Cutler firing passes all over the practice field. It goes without saying that any success the Broncos have in 2008 is directly related to how Cutler and the doctors handle is medical condition and the results after Day 1 are, I'm happy to say, positive.
4. Playing Through Pain -- It has been reported that OL Chris Kuper suffered a broken hand during the morning practice and missed the afternoon workout. The hand, when fitted with a cast, should not keep Chris from practicing. Kuper is battling for a starting job along the offensive line and needs to be on the field. There is no questioning this kid's toughness and I hope the injury doesn't slow him down.
4. Ex-Bronco Sighting -- Former Broncos RB Mike Bell will receive a try-out with the New England Patriots.