FanPost

D-line, then and now

Going into this offseason, the defensive line was broken. Now, that we have the 53 man roster mostly set, what has changed? Let's look at some of the moves.



The Broncos have added 5(!) first round picks to the defensive line.

1. Von Miller - passing-down DE

2. Robert Ayers - moves from OLB to DE and passing-down DT

3. Brodrick Bunkley - a 2-down NT on this team; formerly a regular starter for a playoff team; widely considered an elite run stopper, but a bit of a 1st round bust because of a lack of pass-rush production (think Miller and Doom might help compensate for that?)

4. Ty Warren - DT; formerly a regular starter for a playoff team; unfortunately injured to start the season, though expected to return

5. Derrick Harvey - DE; like Bunkley, a solid run stopper considered a bit of a bust because of a lack of pass-rush production

Oh yeah, they also added some schlub called Doom at DE.

Now let's look more closely at the defensive tackles in particular. What has changed?

1. System change - the Broncos were previously pulling 2 to 3 players from this pool to play every down; now they will only be playing 1 (on passing downs) to 2. So we will see significantly less of these guys on the field.

2. Position change (Vickerson and Thomas) - Kevin Vickerson and Marcus Thomas will transition from 3-4 DEs to 4-3 DTs; both have previously played 4-3 DT with greater success than they enjoyed in the 3-4; if there is a weakness on the D-line, this is it, but from what little I could tell during the preseason, they seemed to be doing an adequate job.

3. Bunkley and Warren - These are quality starters. As long as one of these guys is healthy, at least one of the 2 DT positions on running downs is going to be taken care of.

4. Ryan McBean and Mitch Unrein - If these guys are playing significantly, there might be a problem, but even with the current injuries they will unlikely to see the field much; McBean was a starter last year and this year is deep depth; teams don't generally carry this many DTs, if injuries get this deep on other teams, they are bringing in guys off the practice squad.

All in all, a massive remaking of the defensive line. Will it perform better than last year? I think so, but only time will tell.

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

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