Projecting the Denver Broncos 53-man roster: Part 1

Justin Edmonds

This is an interesting exercise especially with Training Camp so far away. I will project the final 53-man roster through two different filters: 1) What I would do if I were in charge (today) 2) What I think the Broncos will do for the final cut-down (tomorrow).

If I were in charge

The first decision to make is to break down the roster into numbers.  I want an even split on offense and defense giving us 25 players on each squad.  That leaves three spots open for the specialists (punter, kicker, long snapper).  For right now assume the return man will come from the offensive side of the ball.

Offense

Position

Starter

Backup

3rd

Other

QB

18 Manning

17 Osweiler

---

---

RB

28 Ball

22 Anderson

23 Hillman

35 Bibbs

WR 1

88 D. Thomas

12 Caldwell

---

---

WR 2

10 Sanders

14 Latimer

---

---

WR 3

83 Welker

19 Burse

---

---

TE 1

80 J. Thomas

89 Robinson

---

---

TE 2

85 Green

81 Dreessen

---

---

LT

78 Clady

---

---

---

LG

74 Franklin

---

---

---

C

66 Ramirez

---

---

---

RG

65 Vasquez

---

---

---

RT

75 Clark

---

---

---

Reserve OL

79 Schofield

61 Paradis

70 Painter

64 Montgomery

2 QB: There is nothing worse than wasting a roster spot on someone who will be inactive each and every week.  Two is all you need and on my team Zac Dysert is the odd man out.

4 HB: I kept four and Hillman makes the cut because every other back on the roster seems to be from a similar mold.  You want "change of pace" and Hillman gives that to you albeit in somewhat disappointing fashion.  Bibbs is a reliable work horse that shows good vision and patience and should stick as a good rotational back competing for reps with CJ Anderson behind Montee Ball.

6 WR: First big surprise as I opted to take 6 to the active roster.  Burse will fill in as the return man.  I could have opted to keep 5 and send Andre Caldwell packing, but I think his familiarity in the system and his ability to play all three spots provides the Broncos with valuable insurance against injury to one of their big three.

4 TE: Since we have a plethora of pass catchers that cut into Jacob Tamme's skillset, I decide to save the Broncos 3 million in cap space to be rolled over to 2015 by making this cut.  While I expect this to be an unpopular decision, Dreessen when healthy is a far better all around TE.  This also allows me to bump a cheaper Robinson into the roll.  I could just as easily see Tamme stick if Dreessen fails to shake the injury bug.

9 OL: I've long contended that a rookie would have to win their role on the interior of the line in order to be a starter in 2014.  I do not think Mike Schofield has the experience yet to supplant either Franklin or Clark at right tackle.  As it stands, I project what I view as the best starting five into the lineup with both rookies at reserve spots.  I think Painter makes enough strides to stick.  Free agent Will Montgomery gives the Broncos a very versatile and talented lineup of reserves.

Defense

Position

Starter

Backup

3rd

Other

Rush DE

94 Ware

93 Smith

---

---

Closed DE

95 Wolfe

97 Jackson

---

---

UT

92 Williams

76 Austin

---

---

NT

98 Knighton

99 Vickerson

---

---

SAM

58 Miller

48 Barrett

55 McCray

---

MIKE

56 Irving

57 Barrow

---

---

WILL

59 Trevathan

47 Nelson

---

---

CB 1

21 Talib

29 Roby

---

---

CB 2

25 Harris Jr.

36 Webster

32 Carter

---

FS

26 Moore

30 Bruton

37 Hagg

---

SS

43 Ward

27 Ihenacho

---

---

8 DL:  The only surprise here is that Marvin Austin supplants Mitch Unrein as the sub-package UT in the rotation.  Unrein is tough and works hard but to this point has notched zero sacks in his specialized role.  Marvin Austin is more talented and can be a better player if Del Rio can motivate him to play to his potential.

7 LB: This group will see an influx of talent, speed, and inexperience.  I could very easily see both Shaq Barrett and Lerentee McCray making the cut.  Both can be disruptive forces and should see extensive time on special teams.  As far as the Mike position, Irving gets 1st and 2nd down while 5th round draft pick gets 3rd.  From what I heard from minicamps, Barrow is very athletic and should be able to win the nickel role.  As far as Nelson beating out Brandon Marshall, he plays faster with more range.

10 DB: This was one of the most difficult position groups to project once we got to the last couple of spots.  In the end, I think Tony Carter is just good enough to win the last spot at corner.  He has a leg up on the competition with game experience and familiarity in Jack Del Rio's defense.  At safety, I don't think Quinton Carter will be able to come back from micro-fracture surgery and perform at the level he did in 2011.  Erig Hagg gives the Broncos some flexibility as he's played both free and strong safety.  He is a capable coverage man and would do a decent job in 3-4 safety subpackages matched up against a TE.  Odd man out is Omar Bolden.

It is very encouraging when the toughest decisions you have to make are at the 8th defensive line spot as well as the 5th S and 5th CB spot.

Special Teams

P Britton "easy money" Colquitt

K Matt "OMG I make how much?" Prater

LS Aaron "You wish you had my job" Brewer

What do you think Broncos Country?  Would you have done anything differently?

Tomorrow I'll bring you part 2 in which I project what the Denver Broncos will do.

GO BRONCOS!!!

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Mile High Report

You must be a member of Mile High Report to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Mile High Report. You should read them.

Join Mile High Report

You must be a member of Mile High Report to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Mile High Report. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker