OAKLAND, CA - NOVEMBER 06: Ryan McBean #98 and Elvis Dumervil #92 of the Denver Broncos celebrate after Dumervil sacked Carson Palmer #3 of the Oakland Raiders at O.co Coliseum on November 6, 2011 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
In 2011, the Broncos Defensive Line surprised many people. Dumervil started out slow, but picked up the pace as the season went on, Robert Ayers shook off the bust term by turning into a solid run stuffer, and DT Brodrick Bunkley anchored the middle. The group played well and performed better than most expected. Overall the Broncos ranked as the 20th overall defense in the league.
Now in 2012, the Broncos enter camp with a few questions about their D-Line. One being who will our starting DT's be? Brodrick Bunkley who played great last season is now in New Orleans, and Marcus Thomas is still a free agent. Returning is veterans Ty Warren, Kevin Vickerson, and Sealver Siliga and Mitch Unrein. The Broncos did add a few pieces to compete and possibly rotate at DT. The Broncos drafted DT Derek Wolfe with their first pick in this past Aprils NFL Draft, and signed former Bronco Justin Bannan.
The Broncos seem set at the Defensive end position though. Returning is sack artist Elvis Dumervil, run stuffer Robert Ayers, Jason Hunter, and Jeremy Beal. Some new faces to the group are Ben Garland, Malik Jackson and Jamie Blatnick
Wolfe was the 36th overall pick in this past Aprils NFL Draft, and the Broncos first pick in the draft. Wolfe comes in to be the interior pass rusher that the Broncos have severely lacked the last few years. Wolfe is pretty versatile, he can line up at either DT or DE, and can be a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses. Wolfe was a surprising pick in Aprils draft, but i think he will pan out to be a very solid pick for the Broncos.
What are the expectations for Wolfe in his rookie year? Normally i would say keep your expectations low. Rookie DT's usually struggle their rookie year, and take a couple years to fully develop, but i have a feeling he will be a solid contributor to our defense. his interior presence, along with Von and Dumervil coming off the edges, should give QB's issues.
A tall, long-limbed defensive tackle who coils up well for a guy his size and looks a bit thicker in the mid-section/base than his weight would indicate. Can keep his base down off the snap and extend his arms into contact vs. the run game. However, lacks ideal natural anchor strength. Possesses decent natural power and did a better job keeping his legs under him as a senior. Uses his length well to shed, showcases some violence when asked to shed and finds the football well. However, simply lacks the physical make-up to simply hold up well at the point and too often gets a bit upright and knocked off balance through contact inside.
Also, did a better job in 2011 getting off the ball on time and playing with better leverage. Does a nice job extending his long arms into contact and will keep his base under him as a puncher. However, he's a linear athlete who doesn't initially overwhelm on contact, lacks the explosion to quickly get back into his opponent or side-step laterally. Works hard through contact and uses his length well to work himself free. However, isn't a real explosive or sudden laterally kid.
Impression: A high motor, had working kid who finds the football and uses his length to make plays. Doesn't have the anchor to play inside in a 43 front at the next level. However, as a two gap five-technique in a 34 he's got the skill set to fight for playing time in a rotation and create some negative plays vs. the run.
WOLFE AT A GLANCE:
• A defensive tackle from the University of Cincinnati who played 45 career games, starting his last 38 contests, and finishing fourth on the school’s all-time list with 19.5 sacks.
• Named Big East Conference co-Defensive Player of the Year and earned second-team All-America honors as a senior in 2011 after recording 9.5 sacks on the season and ranking first among Football Subdivision defensive tackles with 21.5 tackles for a loss.
• Recognized as the All-American Strength and Conditioning Athlete of the Year by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) in April 2011.
• Opened all 12 games as a junior in 2010 and garnered second-team all-conference accolades while helping the Bearcats rank fourth in the Big East in rush defense (135.4 ypg.).
• Played seven games at defensive tackle as a true freshman in 2008 after originally being recruited as an offensive tackle.
• Lettered three times in football at Beaver Local High School in Lisbon, Ohio, in addition to competing as a state-qualifying powerlifter during his final two prep seasons.
• Selected by the Broncos in the second round (36th overall) of the 2012 NFL Draft.
2011: Wolfe started all 13 games for Cincinnati and was named Big East Conference co-Defensive Player of the Year and a second-team All-America selection after totaling 70 tackles (37 solo), 9.5 sacks (66 yds.), two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery... Ranked fifth in the nation with 21.5 tackles for a loss—a total that represented the fourth-most in school history and the most by a Football Subdivision defensive tackle in 2011... Posted three double-digit tackle games, including a career-high 11 stops vs. Louisville (10/15).
2010: Wolfe opened all 12 contests and recorded 48 tackles (29 solo), four sacks (21 yds.) and one pass defensed to earn second-team all-conference honors from The NFL Draft Report... Helped Cincinnati rank fourth in the Big East in rush defense (135.4 ypg.).
2009: Wolfe contributed as a 13-game starter a as sophomore, totaling 41 tackles (21 solo), five sacks (32 yds.), one forced fumble and one fumble recovery... Recorded 10 of his stops on third down and another on fourth down.
2008: Wolfe played seven games at defensive tackle as a true freshman after being recruited to the Bearcats as an offensive tackle... Tallied three tackles (2 solo) and one sack (7 yds.) in his first collegiate season.
HIGH SCHOOL: Wolfe lettered three times as a defensive end, outside linebacker, tight end and offensive tackle at Beaver Local High School in Lisbon, Ohio, where he finished his prep career with 205 tackles... Colleted 78 tackles and seven sacks as a senior in 2007 to earn Division III All-Ohio, All-Ohio Valley Athletic Conference, All-Eastern District and All-Ohio Valley Class AAAA first-team honors... Competed on the school’s powerlifting team and qualified for the state finals as a junior and senior.
PERSONAL: Wolfe majored in criminal justice at Cincinnati and was named to the Big East Academic Honor Roll as a senior... Derek J. Wolfe was born on Feb. 24, 1990, in Lisbon, Ohio.
Via: Denver Broncos
Bannan signed as a free agent this past offseason. I really thought this was a solid addition. No Bannan won't blow you away with his stats, but he's a solid, hard working player. He is getting up there in years, but i think we can get another solid year or two out of him. During his career, Bannan has totaled 269 total tackles, 6 sacks, 1 Interception and 4 forced fumbles.
I see Bannan starting and being our run stuffer. Again, he won't be amazing by any means, but he is probably the best we got. Bannan won't provide much as a pass rusher, so he probably is only a two down player. We need Bannan to have a solid year for us as a run stuffer.
BANNAN AT A GLANCE:
• A 11th-year defensive lineman who owns 303 tackles, 6.5 sacks, one interception, 10 passes defensed, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery in 144 career appearances.
• Made 32 tackles last season for the Rams in 15 games played (14 starts). He has played at least 15 games in each of the past five seasons.
• Played all 16 games for the second consecutive season with the Ravens in 2009, helping the defense lead the NFL in yards per rush (3.4) and rank third in the league scoring defense (16.3 ppg.).
• Started a career-high 15 games for the Ravens in 2008, totaling a personal-best 56 tackles (30 solo) to help the club advance to the AFC Championship Game.
• Contributed to a Baltimore defense in 2007 that limited opponents to the fourth-lowest yards per rush average (2.8) since the 1970 NFL merger.
• Appeared in all 16 games (7 starts) during his final year with the Bills in 2005, registering 38 tackles (28 solo) and 1.5 sacks.
• Named first-team All-Big 12 Conference as a senior at the University of Colorado, where he was a four-year starter.
• Selected by Buffalo in the fifth round (139th overall) of the 2002 NFL Draft.
QUICKLY: The 11th-year defensive lineman joined the Broncos as an unrestricted free agent on April 11, 2011... Set a career high with four pass breakups for the Broncos in 2010... Tied for second on the team with nine quarterback hits that year.
2011: Played 15 games (14 starts) for the Rams, finishing with 32 tackles, three passes defensed and one forced fumble.
2010: In the team's home opener versus Seattle (9/19) he brought down Seattle RB Justin Forsett short of the first-down mark on a third-down attempt that led to a turnover on downs after the Seahawks' fourth-down attempt was unsuccessful... Registered one hit on QB Vince Young, combined with LB D.J. Williams to stop RB Chris Johnson short of the chains on a third-down attempt in the first quarter, and teamed up with LB Mario Haggan to tackle RB Chris Johnson after a two-yard gain on a third-and-6 attempt in the fourth quarter at Tennessee (10/3)... Matched his career-best solo tackle output at Baltimore (10/10) against his former team (2006-09)... Combined with CB Nate Jones to stop RB Darren McFadden for a 1-yard loss in the second quarter vs. Oakland (10/24)... Registered one QB hit on QB Troy Smith at San Francisco (10/31)... Contributed to a team defensive effort that held Kansas City to 2.3 yards per rushing attempt vs. Kansas City (11/14)... Spent a good portion of the game in the Chargers' backfield, finishing with one sack (8 yds.) and two QB hits in addition to two tackles for no gain. at San Diego (11/22)... Set a career high with two pass breakups against St. Louis (11/28), becoming the first Broncos defensive lineman since DT Demetrin Veal in 2006 (vs. Pit., 11/5/06) to record two pass defenses in one game. He received credit for a hurry on QB Sam Bradford that forced an incomplete pass in the third quarter, and contributed to a team defensive effort that held RB Steven Jackson to his lowest single-game rushing average (2.5) in 2010... Stripped WR Dexter McCluster, forcing a fumble that was recovered by teammate LB Mario Haggan at Kansas City (12/5)... Registered two quarterback hits on QB John Skelton at Arizona (12/12)... Tipped a pass from QB Matt Schaub at the line of scrimmage that was intercepted by CB Syd'Quan Thompson with 1:19 to play, sealing the Broncos' victory vs. Houston (12/26). In the season finale against San Diego (1/2), Bannan tackled RB Ryan Mathews for a 1-yard loss in the fourth quarter.
Via: Denver Broncos
Last year was a disappointing year for "Big Vick" who wasn't as big as he used to be. Vickerson lost some weight and wasn't the same player he was before. Vick eventually ended up on the IR. In 2011, Vickerson only totaled 5 tackles. During his career Vickerson has totaled 91 tackles, 3 sacks, 1 INT and 1 forced fumble. His best year came in 2010 with the Broncos where he had 42 tackles, 2 sacks and 1 int.
It has been reported that Vick has put the weight he lost the past season back on, so he is "Big Vick" again. He is probably our 2nd best run stuffer on the team behind Bannan. If healthy, i can see Vickerson getting alot of playing time on running downs and against run heavy teams. I think Vickerson can make the team.
VICKERSON AT A GLANCE:
• A seventh-year defensive tackle who has played 44 career NFL games (18 starts) in seven seasons with Denver (2010-11), Tennessee (2007-09) and Miami (2005-06) in addition to a 10-game stint with NFL Europe in 2007.
• Set career highs in games played (15) and starts (12) in his first season with Denver in 2010, finishing second among the club’s defensive linemen with 42 tackles (33 solo), including a career-high two sacks (4 yds.), with one interception (4 yds.) and one forced fumble.
• Posted a personal-best 49 tackles (24 solo) in 13 games (2 starts) for Tennessee in 2009.
• Started 10 games for NFL Europe’s Cologne Centurions in 2007, where he was named a first-team All-NFL Europa selection after posting 31 tackles and 3.5 sacks.
• Lettered four years at Michigan State University, where he played 44 games (19 starts) and totaled 113 tackles, including 8.5 sacks and 24.5 tackles for a loss, in addition to 19 quarterback pressures, one fumble recovery and two blocked kicks.
• Joined the Broncos as a free agent on Sept. 7, 2010.
• Selected by Miami in the seventh round (216th overall) of the 2005 NFL Draft.
CAREER TRANSACTIONS: Signed by Miami as a draft choice 7/25/05; Placed on injured reserve (knee) by Miami on 9/3/05; Waived by Miami 8/27/07; Signed by Tennessee (practice squad) 10/31/07; Signed by Tennessee (active roster) 11/27/07; Placed on reserve/suspended list by Commissioner 12/5/08; Suspension lifted by Commissioner 1/5/09; Traded to Seattle 4/24/10; Waived by Seattle 9/6/10; Signed by Denver 9/7/10; Placed on injured reserve by Denver 10/10/11.
2011: Vickerson started four of Denver’s first five games and totaled four tackles (3 solo) before being placed on injured reserve with an ankle injury on Oct. 10.
2010: Vickerson played a career-high 15 games (12 starts) for the Broncos after being waived by Seattle at the conclusion of the preseason and signing with Denver on Sept. 7... Totaled 42 tackles (33 solo), including a personal-best two sacks (4 yds.), with one interception (4 yds.), three passes defensed and one forced fumble... Started 12 of Denver’s final 13 games, missing the Broncos’ International Series Game at S.F. (10/31) in London
with a groin injury.
Via: Denver Broncos
Ty Warren hasn't played a snap of football since the 2009 season. It's hard to gauge what he has left. In 2010, a hip injury is what put Warren onto the IR, and in 2011 a triceps injury is what put the veteran onto the IR once again. During his carrer, Warren has totaled 373 tackles, 20 sacks, and 4 forced fumbles.
I don't really know what to expect from Warren. He's been out of football for 2 years, so who knows. I don't think his roster spot is secure. He will bea guy we all should keep a close eye on during camp.
WARREN AT A GLANCE:
• A 10th-year defensive tackle who started 92-of-105 career regular-season games and 11-of-15 postseason contests in his first seven NFL seasons with New England before missing the 2010 and 2011 campaigns due to injury.
• Helped the Patriots capture six division championships, three conference titles and two Super Bowl wins from 2003-09, as part of a defense that ranked in the Top 10 five times during that stretch.
• Played at least 13 games in each of his first seven seasons before missing the entire 2010 campaign with a hip injury.
• Earned a spot on the USA Today All-Joe Team in 2008 after starting all 13 games played and posting 65 tackles (38 solo), two sacks (11 yds.), one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.
• Finished second on the Patriots with a career-high 117 tackles (66 solo) and added a personal-best 7.5 sacks (45 yds.) in 2006 to earn All-Pro honors from Sports Illustrated (Peter King).
• Totaled 144 tackles (78 solo) and 13.5 sacks (72 yds.) during his career at Texas A&M University where he earned multiple All-Big 12 Conference accolades.
• Joined the Broncos as a free agent on Aug. 4, 2011.
• Selected by the Patriots in the first round (13th overall) of the 2003 NFL Draft.
CAREER TRANSACTIONS: Signed by New England as a draft choice 7/21/03; Placed on injured reserve (hip) by New England 8/13/10; Released by New England 7/29/11; Signed by Denver 8/3/11; Placed on injured reserve by Denver 9/17/11.
2011: Warren injured his triceps during the preseason and was inactive for Denver’s season opener before being placed on injured reserve on Sept. 17.
2010: Warren was placed on injured reserve (hip) on Aug. 13 and missed the entire season.
2009: Warren played 13 games (12 starts) and collected 57 tackles (37 solo), one sack (9 yds.) and one pass defensed for New England... Started at defensive end in the Patriots’ AFC Wild Card Game vs. Bal. (1/10) and totaled nine tackles (5 solo)... Played in his 100th regular-season game vs. Mia. (11/8).
Via: Denver Broncos
Siliga intrigues me. He was getting some 1st team reps this offseason. In 2011 he spent the entire year on the Broncos Practice Squad.
Siliga decided to skip his senior season at Utah and enter the draft, which doesn't seem like a wise decision at this point. Siliga was never rated very high on draft boards, making his decision to leave early a bit perplexing. The defensive lineman finished with 41 tackles and 1.5 sacks as a junior, earning honorable mention All-Mountain West Conference for the second straight season. Siliga had only 2.5 sacks in three seasons at Utah, proving his pass-rushing skills are modest at best and will need drastic improvement at the next level. It will be tough for him to crack a regular rotation in the NFL, and his skills seem to be limited to the 4-3 defense. Siliga does have good size and can be a force against the run at times. However, he doesn't possess much quickness and gets a late start off the snap. He doesn't get much penetration into the backfield and often needs the play to come to him. Siliga has trouble getting away from blocks, lacking counter moves. It would have been wise to stay one more season at Utah, and it looks like Siliga will go undrafted or be a late-round pick
If Siliga impresses as a run stopper, he could compete with Warren and Vickerson for a roster spot. He is also a Practice Squad option.
Sealver Siliga is a first-year defensive tackle from the University of Utah who spent time on Denver’s practice squad as a rookie in 2011 after originally signing with San Francisco as a college free agent... Started 21-of-37 games played for the Utes and recorded 97 tackles (32 solo), 2.5 sacks (10 yds.), 11 tackles for a loss, five pass deflections and one fumble recovery... Named an honorable mention All-Mountain West Conference selection following his final two seasons... Opened all 12 games for Utah as a senior team captain and helped the defense rank second in the conference and 11th nationally against the run (137.9 ypg)... Started the final nine contests of his junior season and collected a career-high 49 tackles, including 6.5 tackles for a loss... Attended Copper Hills High School in West Jordan, Utah, where he lettered four times as a two-way lineman... Earned all-state, all-conference and Class 5A All-Region III honors following his senior campaign in addition to capturing the state of Utah power-lifting title, producing a 560-pound squat, 600-pound dead lift, 390-pound bench press and a 315-pound power clean... Nicknamed Sealver (pronounced silver), Tupaimoefitpo Siliga (pronounced see-linga) is one of 11 children and was born on April 26, 1990, in West Jordan, Utah. Via: Denver Broncos
Unrein was active for 14 games last season and totaled 8 tackles last season. Unrein will battle with Warren, Vickerson, and Siliga for a roster spot.
UNREIN AT A GLANCE:
• A second-year player who saw time in 14 games as a reserve defensive lineman with the Broncos in 2011 and collected seven tackles (5 solo) along with one special-teams stop.
• Competed with the Texans during training camp as a rookie in 2010 before being signed by the Broncos and spending the final 11 weeks of the season on the club’s practice squad.
• Received honorable mention All-Mountain West Conference distinction in each of his final three seasons at the University of Wyoming, where he totaled 162 career tackles and 10.5 sacks.
• Named the Defensive MVP of the New Mexico Bowl in 2009 after collecting six tackles, two sacks, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery for the Cowboys.
• Joined the Broncos as a practice-squad signee on Oct. 20, 2010.
• Entered the NFL with Houston as a college free agent on May 7, 2010.
CAREER TRANSACTIONS: Signed by Houston as a college free agent 5/7/10; Waived by Houston 9/4/10; Signed by Denver (practice squad) 10/20/10; Signed by Denver to a future contract 1/3/11.
2011: Unrein played 14 games (0 starts) for the Broncos in the regular season and totaled seven tackles (5 solo) along with one special-teams stop... Saw action in both of Denver’s playoff games and collected one tackle.
2010: Unrein, who entered the NFL with Houston as a college free agent on May 7, was waived by the Texans during final roster cutdowns before signing with Denver on Oct. 20 and spending the final 11 weeks of the season on the club’s practice squad.
COLLEGE: Unrein totaled 162 tackles (67 solo), 20.5 tackles for losses (75 yds.) and 10.5 sacks (75 yds.) with two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery in 48 career games (38 starts) for the University of Wyoming… Garnered honorable mention All-Mountain West Conference accolades in each of his final three years for the
Cowboys... Registered 41 total tackles, including six tackles for a loss (21 yds.) and four sacks (17 yds.), as a senior and was named the Defensive MVP of the New Mexico Bowl in 2009 after collecting six tackles, two sacks, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.
PERSONAL: Unrein earned first-team all-state honors as a junior and senior at Eaton High School in Eaton, Colo., where he was also among the top wrestlers in the state... Mitch Unrein was born on March 25, 1987, in Eaton, Colo
Via: Denver Broncos
Dumervil, the Broncos best defensive linemen, started out slow last season, but turned it on as the season went on. Dumervil finished with 42 tackles and 9.5 sacks. During his career Dumervil has totaled 171 tackles, 52 sacks, 1 INT, 10 forced fumbles and 9 fumble recoveries.
Dumervil as we all know was arrested last week, but all signs point to him getting off with no charges pressed and no suspension. Dumervils court date is set for August 16th.
I expect Dumervil to have a great season. Ideally the Broncos offense will be scoring 20+ point a game, which will allow dumervil to go after QB and apply pressure on him. A 12+ sack season is not out of question for Dumervil. We need him to have a great year for us.
DUMERVIL AT A GLANCE:
• A seventh-year defensive end who ranks eighth on the franchise’s career sack list (52.5) and has made two Pro Bowls in the last three seasons.
• Averaged the third-most sacks per game (.70) since he entered the league in 2006 with that figure ranking 10th in NFL history (since 1982 / min. 40 sacks).
• Spent the entire 2010 season on injured reserve (torn pectoral) before rebounding to post 9.5 sacks in 2011 and become just the seventh NFL player since 2000 to make the Pro Bowl after missing the previous year due to injury/illness.
• Posted all 9.5 of his sacks in 2011 over Denver’s last nine games, tying for the NFL lead during that stretch.
• Produced a club-record 17 sacks in 2009 when he became the first Bronco to lead the league in that category and earned his first Pro Bowl selection (starter).
• Set a Broncos single-game record with four sacks vs. Cleveland (9/20/09) en route to tying for the second fastest in NFL history to 10 sacks in a season (6 games).
• Posted four takeaways (3 FR, 1 INT) for the Broncos in 2007, tying for the NFL lead among defensive linemen, and was one of three Denver defenders to start all 16 games.
• Registered a team-high 8.5 sacks (56.5) in 2006 with that total ranking third among league rookies and tying for third by a Broncos rookie in club history.
• Started for two seasons at the University of Louisville, where he led the nation with 20 sacks in 2005 as a first-team All-American who was named the Bronko Nagurski Award winner(nation’s best defensive player) and the Big East Conference Defensive Player of the Year.
• Selected by the Broncos in the fourth round (126th overall) of the 2006 NFL Draft.
2011: Dumervil started all 14 games he played during the regular season and earned his second career Pro Bowl selection after finishing second on the team with 9.5 sacks (63 yds.) to go along with 42 tackles (31 solo), one pass defensed and one fumble recovery... Tied for the NFL lead with 9.5 sacks after Nov. 1, including an eight-game streak with at least a half sack to represent a career high... Opened both postseason games for Denver and totaled three tackles, one sack (11 yds.) and one forced fumble... Named the Broncos’ recipient of the Ed Block Courage Award for his perseverance in overcoming his injury in 2010.
2010: Dumervil suffered a torn pectoral during training camp and was placed on injured reserve on Sept. 4.
2009: Dumervil, in his first year playing linebacker, was named a Pro Bowl starter after becoming the first Bronco in team history to lead the league in sacks with a club-record 17 (88.5 yds.)... Saw time in all 16 games (14 starts)and added 49 tackles (42 solo), three pass breakups, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery... Earned first team All-Pro recognition from the Associated Press, The Sporting News, Pro Football Weekly/PFWA and ESPN.com... Named Pass Rusher of the Year by the NFL Alumni... Received the Darrent Williams Good Guy Award from the Denver media... Set Denver’s single-game sack record with four vs. Cle. (9/20) that tied for the most sacks in a game by an NFL linebacker since 2000... Tied for the second fastest in NFL history to 10 sacks, reaching that mark in six games... Joined Indianapolis defensive end Dwight Freeney as one of two players in history to win a sack title at the NCAA-FBS and NFL levels... Had 11 sacks on third downs that tied for the most in the NFL since at least 1991... Led the league with a Broncos-record seven multiple-sack games.
2008: Dumervil saw time in all 16 games (15 starts) for Denver, tying for the team high with five sacks (35 yds.)and posting 44 tackles (30 solo)... Added one forced fumble and one fumble recovery... Recorded a season-high eight tackles (5 solo) and two sacks (15 yds.) on Monday Night Football at N.E. (10/20) that marked the seventh multiple-sack game of his career... Had three tackles and a strip sack of quarterback Brett Favre at NYJ (11/30) on a third down in the red zone in the third quarter.
2007: Dumervil was one of three Broncos defenders and the only defensive lineman to start all 16 games as the second-year player finished the year with a team-high 12.5 sacks (62.5 yds.), 56 tackles (43 solo), one interception (27 yds.), seven pass breakups, four forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries... Tied for sixth in the NFL and tied for ninth in club history for sacks in a season... Sack total also represented the most by a Bronco since 1999 (Trevor Pryce, 13)... Tied for the NFL lead among defensive linemen and ranked second among all Broncos with four takeaways (3 FUM, 1 INT)... Three fumble recoveries tied for third in the NFL (tied for AFC lead)... Four forced fumbles were a team high (T-9th in NFL) with two of them being returned by teammates for touchdowns... Seven pass breakups were the most by a Broncos defensive lineman since 1995 (Michael Dean Perry, 8)... Earned AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors with a three-sack game vs. K.C. (12/9)... Had four multiple-sack games, marking the most by a Bronco since 2000 (Trevor Pryce, 4).
2006: Selected by the Broncos in the fourth round (126th overall) of the 2006 NFL Draft, Dumervil played 13 games (0 starts) as a rookie and posted 19 tackles (15 solo), 8.5 sacks (56.5 yds.), two forced fumbles and a team-high three fumble recoveries... Sack total ranked third among NFL rookies and tied for the third-highest
total by a rookie in Broncos history... Had a sack on 44.7 percent of his tackles (8.5 sacks / 19 tackles) and became the first NFL rookie to record five sacks in a
two-game span since 2001 (Justin Smith, Cin.)... Posted the first two sacks of his career vs. Oak. (10/15)... Recorded three sacks, tying Denver’s franchise
record for rookies (Rulon Jones, 1980), and recovered a fumble at Cle. (10/22).
COLLEGE: Dumervil finished his career at the University of Louisville ranked second on the school’s all-time sacks list with 32 and third on its all-time tackles-for-losses chart with 42.5... Played 44 career games (24 starts) at Louisville and posted 151 tackles (83 solo), 11 forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, one interception and four pass breakups to go along with 32 sacks (223 yds.)... Earned several national accolades as a senior after a record-setting season that saw the defensive end lead the nation with a school-record 20 sacks (165 yds.) as a 12-game starter... 20 sacks marked the second-highest single-season sack total in NCAA history behind Terrell Suggs’ 24 sacks for Arizona State in 2002... Selected as the Bronko Nagurski Award winner (nation’s best defensive player) and was the Walter Camp Top 10 Player of the Year as well as a first-team All-American (AP) as a senior... Tabbed the Big East Conference Defensive Player of the Year and a finalist for the Vince Lombardi Award (nation’s top lineman) that year... Set an NCAA record with 10 forced fumbles as a senior and totaled 65 tackles (38 solo), one interception, one fumble recovery and four pass breakups... Nine sacks in Louisville’s first two games as a senior set an NCAA record for sacks in consecutive games.
PERSONAL: Dumervil was a three-year starter at Jackson High School in Miami, Fla., where he totaled a school record 78 sacks during his prep career and was a two-time all-state selection... Had 110 tackles and 30 sacks as a senior while forcing three fumbles and recovering four to earn the team’s defensive MVP honors... Played in the California-Florida All-Star Game as a senior... Earned the team’s MVP honor as a junior after posting 30 sacks on a team that reached the state semifinals... Works with American Group Home and Open Door Youth Gang Alternatives on charitable projects... Bought tickets for and hosted 20 underprivileged children for each Broncos home game in 2010 when he was on injured reserve... Half-brother is Curry Burns, who was a defensive back at Louisville (2000-02) and spent time with the Texans, Giants, Redskins and Saints... Majored in justice administration at Louisville... Elvis Dumervil was born on Jan. 19, 1984, in Miami, Fla.
Via: Denver Broncos
2011 was a good year for Robert Ayers. While it may not show up on the stat sheet, Ayers is the Broncos best run defender. He sets the edge well and can pressure the QB. I'm still holding out hope that he can put it all together and get a 8+ sack season, but we'll see. Last season Ayers totaled 39 tackles and 3 sacks. During his career, he's totaled 97 total tackles 4 sacks, 2 forced fumbles and 3 fumble recoveries.
Ayers will see time outside and inside for the Broncos this year i believe. In Nickel/Dime packages, i can see Ayers playing inside with Wolfe, while Doom and Von are on the outside. If that works out, the Broncos should have a pretty nasty pass rush, we'll see though. I expect Ayers to have a breakout season this year. He'll be a dominant run stuffer, and get 7-10 sacks. Or maybe i should lay off the Kool-laid.
AYERS AT A GLANCE:
• A fourth-year player who started 13-of-16 games at his natural defensive end position in 2011 after playing outside linebacker for the Broncos during his first two NFL seasons.
• Totaled a career-high three sacks in the regular season and led Denver with two quarterback
takedowns in the postseason in 2011.
• Started 10-of-11 games played in 2010 and tied for the team lead with 10 quarterback hits
despite missing five games due to injury.
• Recorded a tackle for a loss in four consecutive games to start the 2010 season.
• Notched the longest scoring fumble return by a Broncos rookie in team history with his
54-yard touchdown on Monday Night Football vs. Pittsburgh (11/9/09).
• Led the University of Tennessee in tackles for a loss during each of his final two years at the
school, totaling 27.5 tackles for negative yardage over that stretch.
• Earned second-team All-Southeastern Conference honors as a senior at Tennessee in 2008,
starting all 12 games at defensive end and leading the conference with 15.5 tackles for a loss
in addition to pacing Tennessee’s defensive line with 49 tackles (34 solo).
• Shared the Andy Spiva Award as Tennessee’s most improved defender in 2008 while helping
the Volunteers tie for third in the country in total defense (263.5 ypg.) and rank 10th in the
nation in scoring defense (16.8 ppg.).
• Selected by the Broncos in the first round (18th overall) of the 2009 NFL Draft.
CAREER TRANSACTIONS: Signed by Denver as a draft choice 8/3/09.
Quickly: Ayers made the switch from linebacker to defensive end prior to the start of the 2011 season and recorded a career best in sacks (3-12) and starts (13) in addition to his 39 tackles (25 solo), two pass breakups, one fumble recovery and one forced fumble. He notched the longest scoring fumble return by a Broncos rookie in team annals with his 54-yard touchdown on Monday Night Football vs. Pittsburgh (11/9/09).
2011 Postseason Highlights:
- vs. Pittsburgh (1/8): Recorded two sacks, his first in postseason play... His second sack came on the final play of regulation to send the game into overtime.
2011 Season Highlights:
- vs. Oakland (9/12): Recorded a solo tackle as he stopped game-high rusher RB Darren McFadden.
- vs. Cincinnati (9/18): Recorded a QB hit on a fourth down in the fourth quarter.
- at Tennessee (9/25): Recovered a fumble in the second quarter.
- vs. San Diego (10/9): Had a tackle for loss in the third quarter when he took down QB Philip Riversafter Rivers recovered his own fumble... Recorded his first sack and first forced fumble of the season on the same play in the fourth quarter.
- vs. Detroit (10/30): Finished with one sack, two tackles for a loss and a QB hit.
- at Oakland (11/6): Had a pass break up on a second down in the fourth quarter that helped force the Raiders to punt.
- vs. New England (12/18): Finished with two tackles including a tackle for a loss on New England’s first play of the third quarter.
- vs. Kansas City (1/1): Had a sack in addition to his three solo tackles.
HUNTER AT A GLANCE:
• A seventh-year defensive end who has played 88 career games (23 starts) with Denver (2010-11), Detroit (2009) and Green Bay (2006-08) and totaled 128 tackles (101 solo), 11 sacks (68 yds.), one interception, two forced fumbles and six fumble recoveries.
• Started a career-high 12 games for Denver in 2010 and set personal bests in nearly every statistical category despite not joining the club until midway through the preseason and playing outside linebacker for the first time.
• Totaled a combined 37 special-teams stops for Green Bay from 2006-08, including a team-leading 25 special-teams tackles in 2007 that represented the most by a Packers player since 1985.
• Earned Division I-AA second-team All-America honors after leading Appalachian State University to the NCAA Division I-AA National Championship as a senior in 2005.
• Joined the Broncos as a free agent on Aug. 19, 2010.
• Entered the NFL with Green Bay as a college free agent on May 5, 2006.
2011: Hunter saw action in all 16 regular-season games (2 starts) for the second consecutive season and totaled 20 tackles (16 solo), one sack (6 yds.), one forced fumble and one fumble recovery... Played in both of Denver’s postseason contests and contributed four tackles (2 solo)... Recorded a season-high six tackles to go along with a sack and a forced fumble in Denver’s season opener vs. Oak. (9/12).
2010: Hunter played all 16 games and started a career-high 12 contests at outside linebacker after signing with Denver during the preseason... Finished fifth on the club with 59 tackles (48 solo), three sacks (30 yds.), one interception (14 yds.), two passes defensed, one forced fumble and two fumble recoveries... Added two solo tackles and one fumble recovery on special teams... Totaled a career-high nine tackles (6 solo), including one sack (14 yds.) at Bal. (10/10)... Recovered a fumble vs. K.C. (11/14) and returned it 75 yards for a score to represent the second fumble return for a touchdown in his career as well as the fourth-longest in franchise history.
Via: Denver Broncos
A tall, athletically built defensive lineman who possesses a long wingspan and some real violence to his game when asked to use his hands to shed blocks. Coils up decently into his stance, but has a lot of leg and struggles to keep his base down and head up at times. Gets inconsistent with his pad level off the ball as a pass rusher because of it. When trying to shoot gaps at times does a nice job staying low and extending his arms into contact in order to create a jolt. However, for the most part his pad level comes up, head stays down and doesn't use his long arms to protect himself. Can be jacked on contact and doesn't create a push as a defensive tackle. Displays some natural athletic ability when asked to loop/stunt inside. However, hasn't put it together with his pass rush arsenal yet. Is more of a linear guy only at this stage who lacks a counter/change of direction ability. Nevertheless, consistently gets his long arms up in pass lanes and knocks a lot of throws down.Displays impressive athletic ability though and when he does get his hands up off the line he can consistently keep himself clean and works like a bear in pursuit. Showcases great range off his frame for the position and demonstrates a good motor to go along with it. Exhibits a natural anchor as well for his size when asked to play the piano down the line. Is coordinated/powerful initially on his punch, can control blocks and work his way in pursuit. However, gets overextended and upright causing him to struggle with balance when asked to breakdown and make a play on the ball. Also, sees time at DE and looks much more coordinated when asked to get into contact, extend his arms and use his violent hands to shed. Lacks the anchor to hold up consistently inside vs. the downhill run game at the next level, as he can be easily sealed on contact. Needs to penetrate and win with his first step in order to be effective vs. the inside run. Holds up very well on the outside though, setting the edge, playing off blocks and working toward the football.Impression: A great looking athlete. Has some real work to do from a technique standpoint and is playing out of position at Tennessee. However, has a lot of upside as a DE both in a 43 and 34 front in the NFL and looks like a really intriguing developmental defensive lineman at this stage with a good bit up upside long term.
JACKSON AT A GLANCE:
• A defensive end who played two seasons each at the University of Tennessee (2010-11) and the University of Southern California (2008-09) and played 46 games (24 starts) while collecting 136 tackles (67 solo), 13 sacks (71 yds.), four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.
• Started 24-of-25 games played for the Volunteers in two seasons, earning first-team All-Southeastern Conference honors following his senior season and second-team all-conference recognition at the conclusion of his junior campaign.
• Played defensive end to begin his career before switching to defensive tackle five weeks into his junior season and starting his final 19 collegiate games at that position.
• Saw action in 21 games in two years as a reserve defensive end for Southern California before transferring to Tennessee in 2010.
• Totaled 103 tackles and 14.5 sacks as a senior at Birmingham High School in Van Nuys, Calif., where he teamed with his twin brother, Marquis, to earn All-L.A. City and All-West Valley co-MVP honors.
• Selected by the Broncos in the fifth round (137th overall) of the 2012 NFL Draft.
2011: Jackson started all 12 games at defensive tackle for Tennessee and tied for third on the team with a career-high 56 tackles (23 solo) to go along with three sacks (13 yds.), two passes defensed and one forced fumble while earning first-team All-Southeastern Conference recognition from the Associated Press... Led the Volunteers in sacks (2.5), quarterback hurries (10) and tackles for a loss (11)... Posted a career-best nine tackles, including two tackles for a loss and one sack, at No. 2 Alabama (10/22)... Earned SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week honors after recording six tackles, a half sack and two tackles for a loss vs. Vanderbilt (11/19).
2010: Jackson opened 12-of-13 games in his first season with Tennessee after transferring from Southern California... Switched from defensive end to defensive tackle after four games and went on to post 48 tackles (29 solo) while ranking first on the Vols with 11 tackles for a loss and second on the team with five sacks (28 yds.)... Added an interception (44 yds.), four pass breakups, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery to earn second-team All-SEC honors.
2009: Jackson played all 13 games (0 starts) for the Trojans in a reserve defensive end role and was primarily used in pass rushing situations... Recorded 18 tackles (11 solo), 3.5 sacks (22 yds.), three passes defensed and one forced fumble.
2008: Jackson saw action in eight games (0 starts) at weakside defensive end as a true freshman for Southern California and totaled four tackles, including two sacks (8 yds.), with one pass deflection and one forced fumble.
HIGH SCHOOL: Jackson tallied 103 tackles and 14.5 sacks as a senior at Birmingham High School in Van Nuys, Calif., and earned All-L.A. City and All-West Valley League co-Defensive MVP honors... Helped lead Birmingham to the 2006 L.A. City title with 10.5 sacks as a junior in 2006.
PERSONAL: Jackson’s twin brother, Marquis, was an all-conference defensive end the past two seasons for Texas Southern University... Malik Jackson was born on Jan. 11, 1990, in Northridge, Calif.
Via: Denver Broncos
Pros:Jeremy Beal could be the next great Oklahoma defensive player in the NFL. He is a extremely hard worker and can always be found in the film and weight rooms putting in the extra work. He has been manning the Oklahoma defense since his freshman season and has 27 total starts to date. He has played in many pressure situations and has always delivered. On the field Beal has a non-stop motor and doesn’t stop until the whistle blows. He combines his exceptional intangibles with excellent athletic ability. Beal’s top attribute is his speed and using that to rush the passer. In three season he has totaled 20.5 sacks with nearly 40 tackles for loss. Those numbers show that he can get into the opponents backfield with ease. Beal is going to be looking at making a switch from defensive end to linebacker when moves on to the NFL. He has the athleticism and work ethic to make that transition. His best fit at the next level will be at the 3-4 rush linebacker position.Cons:The biggest concern for Beal will be how he adjusts to the position change. He doesn’t have the necessary size and strength to play defensive end in the NFL. Even with making the transition to linebacker NFL scouts will worry about his ability to hold up against the run. He needs to get stronger at the point of attack because he can sometimes get washed out by bigger offensive linemen. He has also missed a few tackles when he finds himself in open space.Thoughts:Beal is a tough and smart player that has a ton of experience. He works so hard that I find it impossible that he wouldn’t excel in the NFL. He has all the skills needed to be an impact outside linebacker in the 3-4 defensive scheme.Via: NFLMocks
Jeremy Beal is a first-year defensive end from the University of Oklahoma who spent the his rookie season on the Broncos’ practice squad after being selected by the club in the seventh round (247th overall) of the 2011 NFL Draft... Played 54 games (43 starts) for the Sooners and finished his career ranked second in the program’s history in sacks (29) and tackles for a loss (56.5) while leading the school to three Big 12 Conference Championships (2007, ‘08, ‘10)... Set a school record with 10 career forced fumbles... Named Big 12 Defensive Lineman of the Year and earned second-team All-America honors as a senior in 2010 after totaling a career-high 72 tackles (42 solo), 8.5 sacks (65 yds.), 19 tackles for a loss and three forced fumbles... Ranked fifth in the Big 12 with a career-best 11 sacks (72 yds.) and was selected as a finalist for the Ted Hendricks Award (nation’s top defensive end) as a junior in 2009... Received District 10-5A Defensive MVP honors as a senior at Creekview High School in Carrollton, Texas, where he totaled 127 tackles, including 19 for a loss, and two sacks... Majored in multidisciplinary studies at Oklahoma... Jeremy Beal was born on Dec. 2, 1987, in Carrollton, Texas.
Via: Denver Broncos
Garland came off the Reserve/Military list and is able to practice with the Broncos. Garland is a feel good story, but i'm really anxious to what he can do on the football field. Garland is a very hard worker and is always one of the first on the practice field. One thing going against him is that he hasn't been on the football field in 2 years, so it's a bit of a stretch to expect him to contribute right away. If he does, awesome, but i expect him to be a practice squad player for us in 2012.
Ben Garland is first-year defensive lineman from the Air Force Academy who joined the Broncos as a college free agent on April 30, 2010... Competed with the Broncos during the 2010 preseason before spending 2010-2011 on Denver’s reserve/military list while fulfilling his obligations to the Air Force... Totaled 115 tackles (52
solo), 11.5 sacks (66 yds.), three forced fumbles and two blocked kicks in 39 career games (34 starts) for the Falcons... Opened all 13 contests as a senior and totaled 45 tackles (21 solo) and 4.5 sacks (30 yds.) to earn second-team All-Mountain West Conference honors from the league coaches... Started all 13 games at nose guard as a junior and placed fourth on Air Force with 7.5 tackles for a loss (28 yds.) while adding 39 total stops and four sacks... Played all 13 games (8 starts) as a sophomore and finished second among the team's defensive linemen with 31 tackles (15 solo)... Played four games as a true freshman for the Falcons... Earned first-team all-state honors in football as a senior at Central High School in Grand Junction, Colo., and played one year of basketball at the school... Sworn into the Colorado Air National Guard on May 31, 2012, where he currently serves as a public affairs officer... Served as an element leader in Cadet Squadron 27 at Air Force and majored in systems engineering... Ben Garland was born on April 6, 1988, in Grand Junction, Colo. Via: Denver Broncos
I really like Blatnicks potential. He has a high motor and is a hard worker. I'm interested to see what he can do in camp. Blatnick is a potential Practice Squad addition if he impresses enough during camp. Blatnick was signed as a College Free Agent this past April.
Possesses a solid frame and average length. Doesn't display a great first step, but there is some coordination to his game when asked to side step blocks. Can work the up and under and change directions. However, is more smooth than explosive. Allows his pad level to get upright and will expose his frame. Doesn't disengage well once an opposing lineman is able to get under his frame. Looks a little tight when asked to stand-up and is an average straight-line athlete.
Impression: Possesses good size and a little coordination, but a one speed rush guy. Not a threat off the edge.
Jamie Blatnick is a rookie defensive end from Oklahoma State University who joined the Broncos as a college free agent on April 28, 2012… Played 51 games, totaling 118 tackles, 24 tackles for a loss and 16 sacks in his Cowboy career… Led OSU with 13.5 tackles for a loss and eight sacks as a senior… Paced the squad with 5.5 sacks (34 yards) during his junior season, adding a fumble recovery and a forced fumble… Posted 28 tackles (20 solo) in his sophomore campaign, forcing a fumble at rival Oklahoma… Played in all 13 games as a redshirt freshman in 2008… Attended Celina High School in Celina, Texas, where he won a state title and earned all-state honors twice as both an offensive and defensive lineman after recording 20 career sacks while allowing only one… Majored in health promotion at Oklahoma State… Jamie Blatnick was born on June 24, 1989. Via: Denver Broncos
Position Overview: I think the Broncos D-Line could really be the Broncos strongest unit. They should have a solid pass rush, they just need to find someone to stop the run. I'm excited too see rookies Wolfe and Jackson in action. I'm hoping Ayers has that break out year where he gets 8+ sacks. I'm excited to see what Coach Fox and Del Rio can do with this unit.
What grade would you give the Broncos defensive line?
A (7 votes)
B (143 votes)
C (102 votes)
D (6 votes)
F (2 votes)
260 total votes