Time to see what we have after the draft and start predicting who will be the starters.
Starting with the QB's, RB's, WR's & TE's
Quarterback - Peyton (Freakin) Manning
Peyton Williams Manning (born March 24, 1976) is an American football quarterback for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). He played for the Indianapolis Colts for 14 seasons from 1998–2011. He is the son of former NFL quarterback Archie Manning and an elder brother of New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning.
Manning played college football at the University of Tennessee, leading the Volunteers to the 1997 SEC Championship in his senior season. He was chosen by the Indianapolis Colts with the first overall pick in the 1998 NFL Draft. From 1998 to 2010, he led the Colts to seven AFC South division championships, two AFC championships, and to a Super Bowl championship (Super Bowl XLI). He has won a record four league most valuable player awards, was the most valuable player of Super Bowl XLI, has been named to eleven Pro Bowls, has eleven 4,000-yard passing seasons (including a record six straight), and is the Indianapolis Colts' all-time leader in passing yards (54,828) and touchdown passes (399). In 2009, he was named the best player in the NFL and Fox Sports along with Sports Illustrated named him the NFL player of the decade of the 2000s.
In May 2011, he underwent neck surgery to alleviate neck pain and arm weakness he dealt with during the previous few seasons before signing a five-year, $90 million contract extension with the Colts in July 2011. Manning had hoped to play in the 2011 season, but in September 2011, he underwent a much more serious second surgery: a level one cervical fusion procedure. Manning had never missed an NFL game in his career, but was forced to miss the entire 2011 season. He was released by the Colts on March 7, 2012, and after an almost two-week period where he visited with and worked out for several NFL teams, he signed with the Denver Broncos on March 20, 2012.
Manning's pre-snap routine is one of the most recognizable and parodied in sports. The Indianapolis Colts' almost exclusive use of the hurry-up offense led to Manning using an array of gestures and verbal commands to call the play at the line of scrimmage rather than in the huddle.
Quarterback - Brock Osweiler
As a true freshman in 2009, Osweiler played in six games, with one start. He became the first true freshman to start a game for the Sun Devils since Jake Plummer in 1993. He finished the season completing 24 of 55 passes for 249 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. As a sophomore in 2010 he again played in six games, with one start. For the season he completed 62 of 109 passes for 797 yards, five touchdowns and no interceptions. As a junior in 2011, he took over as the Sun Devils starting quarterback after the retirement of Steven Threet.
At the 2012 NFL Draft, Osweiler was selected in round 2, pick 57 overall by the Denver Broncos.
Gruden's QB Camp: Brock Osweiler (FULL)- HD (via HollyMartins)
Running Back - Willis McGahee
Willis Andrew McGahee, III (born October 21, 1981) is an American football running back for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for the University of Miami, and was recognized as an All-American. He was drafted by the Buffalo Bills in the first round of the 2003 NFL Draft. He also played for the Baltimore Ravens.
On July 30, 2011, McGahee signed a four-year deal with the Denver Broncos worth $9.5 million, $3 million being guaranteed. Following an injury in Week 1 to Knowshon Moreno, McGahee became the primary back for the Broncos and in Week 2 versus the Cincinnati Bengals, he rushed for 101 yards on 28 carries and a 1 yard touchdown run, in which he also brought back the famed "Mile High Salute". In a Week 3 loss to the Titans, McGahee ran for 52 yards on 22 carries and had a 5 yard reception for a touchdown. During a Week 4 loss to the Packers, McGahee rushed 15 times for 103 yards with two receptions for 10 yards. In a Week 5 loss to the Chargers, McGahee rushed for 125 yards on 16 carries. In the Week 7 win against the Dolphins, in the early second half McGahee already racked up 76 yards with an average of 4.2 yards per carry. It looked as if McGahee was on pace for his third-straight 100 yard game, and fourth of the season. However, McGahee fractured his hand early in the second half as well. In that game McGahee could've moved up from 10th in the NFL in rushing to 8th. McGahee was unable to play the following week against the Lions due to his injury. The Broncos lost 45-10. However, the following week against the Raiders McGahee came back with a strong performance. He put up 163 rushing yards, which included a 60 yard touchdown and 24 yard touchdown. That game moved McGahee up to 9th in the NFL rushing leaders statistics. In a Week 10 bout against the Chiefs, McGahee was favored to have another 100 yard game, giving him a total of 5 on the season.
However, in the first quarter McGahee ran up one of his blockers legs, and suffered a left hamstring injury. He was taken to the locker room and listed as questionable to return. Coach John Fox stated in a post-game press conference that McGahee was fine and could've returned in an emergency situation. Coach Fox also said McGahee would most likely be able to play in the next game. McGahee then was moved from 9th to 12th in the NFL Rushing Leaders statistic board. During Week 11 against the Jets, McGahee only picked up 18 yards on the ground. McGahee stated after the game that he did not feel quite like himself. It is very probable that his hamstring was bothering him.
On November 23, 2011, McGahee was named a team captain after the release of captain and backup quarterback Kyle Orton. Coach Fox attributed this to the fact that McGahee "had the next most votes when we took the vote [for team captain] back before the season started." In the Week 12 versus the Chargers, he rushed for 117 yards on 23 carries. The 117 yards included two 20 plus yard runs. One of which was a 24 yard run in overtime which set up the Broncos inside of the 20-yard line. This critical run set up the game winning field goal for Denver. In a Week 13 win against the Vikings, he picked up 111 yards on the ground, which included a 24 yard touchdown run. This game moved McGahee back up to 10th in the NFL in rushing. This marked McGahee's sixth 100 yard performance on the year in which he leads the NFL.
After a week 14 win against the Chicago Bears McGahee had 930 yards on the season. He was expected to eclipse the 1,000-yard mark for the first time since his first season with the Ravens in 2007. On Week 15 against the New England Patriots, McGahee rushed for 70 yards averaging 10 yards per carry and 7 carries but was unfortunately pulled out of the game due to an hamstring injury. With only 10 yards to go to eclipse the 1,000-yard mark, Willis was able to accomplish that feat on a 24-yard run against the Buffalo Bills in week 16. He ended the game with only 64 yards rushing and 15 carries. The next week against the Kansas City Chiefs, McGahee rushed for 145 yards on 28 carries averaging 5.2 yards per carry which marked his seventh's 100 yard performance tying for 1st place with Houston Texans running back Arian Foster for most individual triple-digit rushing performances during the 2011 season. January 17, 2012, McGahee was added to Pro Bowl Roster to replace Arian Foster.
Willis McGahee #98 Top 100 NFL Players of 2012 (via RealTLV)
Running Back - Ronnie Hillman
Ronnie Hillman (born September 14, 1991) is an American football running back with the Denver Broncos. He was formerly the starting running back for the San Diego State Aztecs. He ranked fourth among all players in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision with an average of 134.36 rushing yards per game.
Hillman sat out the 2009 season while SDSU sorted out administrative issues involving his admission. This grayshirt year did not count towards Hillman's eligibility. As a freshman for the 2010 San Diego State Aztecs football team, Hillman gained 1,532 yards and scored 17 rushing touchdowns. On September 18, 2010, he gained 228 rushing yards against Missouri in his third college football game.
As a sophomore, Hillman rushed for 1,478 yards and 15 touchdowns during the 2011 regular season. He ranked fourth among all players in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision with an average of 134.36 rushing yards per game. He ranked sixth in total rushing yards. He gained over 100 rushing yards in eight of San Diego State's 12 games in 2011. On October, 29, 2011, he gained a season-high 224 yards against Wyoming. On January 4, 2012, Ronnie Hillman announced that he hired an agent and would be entering the 2012 NFL Draft. Hillman was drafted with the 67th pick by the Denver Broncos.
Ronnie Hillman 2011 highlights (via bschmall95)
Wide Receiver - Demaryius Thomas
Demaryius Antwon Thomas (born December 25, 1987) is an American football wide receiver for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League. He played college football for the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Thomas led the team in receiving in all 3 of his seasons at Tech, 2007, 2008, and 2009.
Thomas was drafted by the Denver Broncos 22nd overall in the 2010 NFL Draft. Thomas had 8 receptions for 97 yards and scored his first NFL touchdown in his NFL debut in a September 19, 2010 game against the Seattle Seahawks. Thomas battled injuries his rookie season, missing six games.
On February 10, 2011 Thomas tore his achilles tendon while working out and was expected to miss a majority, if not the entirety, of the 2011 season, Thomas was surprisingly activated from the Physically Unable to Perform List on September 3, 2011 prior to the start of the season as Broncos GM Brian Xanders said Thomas had responded to rehab well and was "ready to go."
On January 8, 2012 Thomas caught 4 passes for 204 yards and 1 touchdown in his playoff debut, setting an NFL Playoff single game record for yards per catch (51.0). He caught the game-winning, 80-yard touchdown pass on the opening play of overtime to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Wild Card game, 29-23. It was the first overtime playoff game ever contested under the new rules, but Denver's score ended the game because the rules only allowed the other team a possession if the coin-toss winner proceeded to kick a field goal (or, of course, score zero points). The play took 11 seconds, and is the fastest ending to an overtime in NFL history to date. It is also the longest playoff overtime touchdown in NFL history.
Demaryius Thomas- Optimus Prime (via TheBroncoJohnson)
Wide Receiver - Eric Decker
Eric Decker (born March 15, 1987) is an American football wide receiver for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). He was drafted by the Broncos in the third round of the 2010 NFL Draft. He played college football and college baseball at Minnesota, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in business and marketing.
Decker was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the third round (87th overall) of the 2010 NFL Draft. Because of a foot surgery, Decker sat out the Broncos Rookie Mini Camp and OTA's. Broncos Head Coach Josh McDaniels said he hopes he'll be ready for the season opener, "At this point we’re going to err on the side of being real careful and not put them in a situation where (it’s) the last day of minicamp on June 13th and all of a sudden we have a foot injury," said McDaniels."Hopefully everybody will be ready by August."
On July 27, 2010, the Denver Broncos signed Decker to a 4 year contract. In preseason, Decker led all NFL rookies in receptions, but due to the Broncos depth at receiver, Decker didn't see much action in the offense until late in the regular season. He did contribute on special teams however, recording seven special teams tackles while returning 17 kickoffs for 429 yards giving him a 25.2 yards per return average.
Toward the end of the 2010 season the Broncos did start to mix Decker into the offense more, after fellow rookie Demaryius Thomas—a first round draft pick—went down with an ankle injury. Decker finished his rookie season with 6 catches that went for 106 yards and one touchdown—a six-yard score off a Tim Tebow pass.
Decker's role in Denver's offense expanded in 2011. In a week 1 Monday Night Football loss to the Oakland Raiders, Decker returned a fourth quarter punt 90 yards for a touchdown but the Broncos fell 23-20.
In week 2, making his first career start, Decker hauled in 5 passes for 113 yards and 2 touchdowns, the second on a 52 yard catch in the 4th quarter as Denver recorded their first win of the 2011 season, 24-22 over the Cincinnati Bengals. On September 25, in Denvers week 3 17-14 loss to the Tennessee Titans, Decker had a career high 7 catches for 48 yards. Over the next 4 weeks, Decker continued his steady play by hauling in 18 passes for 192 yards and 4 touchdowns.
On November 13, in a week 10 divisional road game at Arrowhead Stadium against the Kansas City Chiefs, starting quarterback Tim Tebow attempted a pair of deep passes for Decker, the first almost being hauled in off a deflection and the other being knocked down by the defender. But in the 4th quarter, with Denver hanging on the a slim 10-7 lead, Tebow hit Decker on a go route deep for a 56 yard touchdown catch, Decker's only catch of the game and only Tebow's 2nd completion, as the Broncos won 17-10 to move into a second place tie in the AFC West with the San Diego Chargers & the Chiefs. In the first round of the playoffs against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Decker was taken out of the game due to injury.
Eric Decker: The Stud (via DFVideos84)
Wide Receiver - Brandon Stokley
Brandon Stokley (born June 23, 1976) is an American football wide receiver for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). He was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in the fourth round of the 1999 NFL Draft. He played college football at Louisiana-Lafayette. Stokley also played for the Indianapolis Colts, Seattle Seahawks, and New York Giants.
In 2003 Stokley signed with the Indianapolis Colts. On December 26, 2004, Stokley received the record-breaking 21-yard touchdown pass for Peyton Manning in the hunt to break Dan Marino's record of 48 touchdown passes in a season. That year, he had a breakthrough season with 68 passes caught for 1,077 yards and 10 touchdowns and an average of 15.8 yards per catch. Furthermore, the TD catch made the 2004 Colts the first NFL team to have three WRs with 1000 receiving yards and 10 TDs or more in a season, the other two being Reggie Wayne and Marvin Harrison. The next two seasons of Stokley's career were marred by various injuries. After he participated in only four games of the 2006 season, the Indianapolis Colts terminated his contract on March 1, 2007. Brandon Stokley won a Super Bowl with both the Baltimore Ravens and the Indianapolis Colts.
Stokley signed with the Denver Broncos on March 14, 2007. On December 7, 2007, he signed a 3-year extension with the team. In a memorable play from the Broncos' 2009 season opener, Stokley caught a pass intended for Brandon Marshall but tipped by Leon Hall, and took it 87 yards into the end zone for the winning score. As he approached the end zone he abruptly changed direction and ran parallel to the goal line, keenly running an additional six seconds off the clock, only crossing into the end zone once he reached the opposite side of the field. This savvy maneuver helped ensure a win for the Denver Broncos, who up until that point were trailing the Cincinnati Bengals 7-6 with 28 seconds remaining in the game. The back-end of this play can be seen in the introduction of Madden NFL 2011. With Stokley's touchdown, the final score was 12-7 and the Denver Broncos got their first 2009 regular season win. During a December 27 game at Philadelphia, Brandon Stokley was ejected for inadvertently slapping a referee on the hand while expressing his anger that a pass interference penalty was not called. On September 4, 2010, Stokley was released by the Broncos. On April 16, 2012, Stokley agreed to a one-year contract to return to the Denver Broncos, reuniting him with his former quarterback, Peyton Manning.
Tip N Catch - Denver Broncos VS Cincinnati Bengals - September 13, 2009 (via WhiteNN3rdy)
Tight End - Jacob Tamme
Jacob Tamme (pronounced /ˈtæmi/ tam-ee; born March 15, 1985) is an American football tight end for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League. He was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the fourth round of the 2008 NFL Draft. He played college football at Kentucky.
Tamme was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the 4th round of the 2008 NFL Draft. He and the Colts agreed to a 4-year contract with undisclosed terms on July 23, 2008.
After week 7 of 2010 season, Dallas Clark was placed on Injured Reserve after an injury to wrist and Tamme took over as the starting tight end. Tamme surprised everyone by producing good statistical numbers and brought comparisons between him and Dallas Clark. Tamme finished the season with a career-high 67 receptions for 631 yards and 4 touchdowns.Tamme signed with the Denver Broncos on March 23, 2012.
Testimony Jacob Tamme Indianapolis Colts (via TheSevenChosen)
Tight End - Joel Dreessen
Joel Dreessen (born July 26, 1982) is an American football tight end for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League. He was drafted by the New York Jets in the sixth round of the 2005 NFL Draft. He played college football at Colorado State. Dreessen has also played for the Houston Texans.
On October 28, 2007, Joel Dreessen caught his first NFL touchdown pass, a 28 yard reception in the fourth quarter from quarterback Sage Rosenfels against the San Diego Chargers at San Diego's Qualcomm Stadium. It was Houston's only touchdown in a 35-10 loss, and Dreessen was named Houston's top offensive player despite only one reception. Dreessen re-signed with the Texans in 2009 for a reported three-year, $3.6 million deal.
Near the end of the 2009 season, Dreessen had become the starter at tight end due to the injury of Owen Daniels. Dreessen caught the first touchdown pass in the Texans' last game against the New England Patriots from Matt Schaub. Dreessen signed with the Denver Broncos on March 23, 2012.
Joel Dreessen (via DFVideos84)
So that is the way I see the offense starting out this season.
Thoughts, comments and flames proceed to the bottom of the post.
I hope you all enjoy these posts I bring to MHR as much as I enjoy making them for you all.