2013 Denver Broncos Training Camp: Sizing up the OL

CHirs Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

With Chris Kuper restructured and activated off the PUP list, let's renew the debate on whether or not the Broncos Should keep 8 or 9 OL

Depth Chart:

Starters

Interior OL depth

Swing T

IR/PUP

Clady

Lilja

Clark

Walton

Beadles

Kuper

(Painter)

Ramirez

Vallos

(Cornick)

Vasquez

Davis

Franklin

(Blake)

(Garland)

The guys in parenthesis are PS eligible.  Currently, Blake has had his 3rd team snapping responsibilities taken over by Steve Vallos.  Garland is a recent convert from the defensive line, and Painter looked terrible in his preseason debut.  For that matter so did Cornick.  All four of those guys are going to the practice squad.

Forget about Walton for a moment because he won't affect the active roster number until he's brought back during the season.

Also take the five starters out of the equation.  That leaves 3 or 4 spots depending on if the Broncos keep 8OL or 9OL.  The frontrunners if they keep 8 are Kuper, Lilja, and Clark.  If they keep 4 the last spot is up for grabs between Vallos and Davis. Regardless, all of those players except Kuper (who is only now starting to get some practice snapping the ball as a center) can play both G and C.

The disadvantage to keeping 9 is that it likely means one less skilled position player, that is unless the Broncos only take 2 QB's to the active roster--which would be bucking the trend in the Elway regime.  The advantage to keeping 9 is that when Walton comes back healthy, you only have to cut the lowest guy on the totem pole.

Keeping 8, I'm going with the trio of Lilja, Kuper and Clark.

Right now, I think they take 9 to the active roster with all the uncertainty at the Center position.  Time will tell, things certainly will become more clear the next couple of weeks.

Like I've stated over and over, ideally the Broncos stash Dysert on the PS which would give them more flexibility with a roster spot in a position of more importance. If history continues on it's path however Dysert will make the 53 man roster at the expense of a skill position that will have more impact than he does over the course of a season.

Kuper starting C?  Not so fast

Pie in the sky, rainbows and unicorns, gumdrops and lollipops, this is by far the best possible outcome from Training Camp.  It would put the five best Broncos linemen in the starting lineup together.  Remember however, that the restructured contract is now paying Kuper like a backup, and equals the amount they would have had to give him in case of an injury settlement.

In no way I'm I saying it won't happen, I'm just saying in all likelihood this is another case of the Broncos doing their due-diligence when it comes to their roster.  If he works out at center, great! If not, you still have a guy capable of playing both guard positions who isn't eating up a lot of cap space.

Congratulations to "The Duke" and the FO for getting something worked out with Kuper, I mean they had to find the money to pay Colquitt from somewhere ;) I kid I kid.

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