They say a picture is worth a thousand words. And you're in luck - because that means there will be no 1800 word dissertation from me today. Amen, hallelujah and can I get a witness!
These charts are pretty self explanatory. Yellow equals danger. Red equals, Oh sh*t! They are subjective. I won't bite your head off for disagreeing me, so long as you promise not to bite my head off for marking your favorite flavor-of-the-week in the color of blood. Positions are also subjective. For example, somebody had to be the starter at LG, and a choice had to be made as to whether we ride with only four WR's again. Many of us will choose differently. Again, it's all subjective and up for discussion.
It probably only took thirty minutes to do up these charts... and then about two hours figuring out how to paste a readable version of them in here. Yes, yes: I'm a technology guru. Please, hold your applause... I'll be here all week!
If you have trouble reading a few of the names, click on the picture and it genie-blinks itself into a larger version of itself. Neeto!
I'm not sure if this is too early for most people to get anything out of it or not, but I personally wanted to get an idea of where we're at, so I shared it. I find it helpful to see it all in one spot. I also remember back when when I didn't have a very good command of the roster, and I'd check different sites for depth charts only to find out that they don't update during the offseason. Like, at all. Still, if you think it's too early and that I wasted my three hours - or if you think I wasted your 12 seconds... move along. Nothing to see here!
This first chart is the projected starters at each position. Colors here don't mean these players are likely to be cut or that they're on "the bubble". It means they're the weak links, that they're unproven, or that they're both. You might also consider this to be graded on a curve. This is an elite team coming off a Super Bowl and heading towards another trip. Players in Denver don't get a pass, and good enough isn't considered good enough.
This second photo below is the preliminary depth chart. There are 25 players on both sides of the ball, with another three specialists added in there as well. That makes 53 on the depth chart for all the math men out there!
The number of players kept at each position fluctuates from year to year, and there will certainly be some changes to those numbers as the offseason progresses. In coming up with how many players to include at each position, I used a combination of recent history, roster math, available talent, and most importantly, I used The Force.
Truth be told, the biggest factor as to whether you keep nine offensive linemen, three quarterbacks, or five defensive ends simply depends on the "human talent" available. May as well consider it another course in chaos theory, because if Zac Dysert flaps his wings in the wrong direction, it could just as easily create another open roster spot at defensive end.
The color red here does mean that the player is on the bubble. Yellow probably means the player has a year before he turns red - but no guarantees. You'll notice that I listed Rahim Moore as one of the weak links up above, and yet he's not colored in blood or in yellow here. That's because his roster spot is secure for this year, as there are no options to replace him. That rule there should sorta serve to epitomize the difference between the two charts.
It's a little hard to read the names in red, but you probably don't know who most of them are to begin with. Click on the photo, and it'll blow up if you'd like to find out!