The exercise of identifying the top players to track in camp will be a nice way of both distracting myself from the lack of Broncos news and clarifying where I want to focus attention when camp does start.
Unless you've experienced a "bone jarring" RB that just hurts when making a tackle it's hard to appreciate the high level of value this writer places on having a battering ram for a running back to "soften" the D. Add to our offense a running game that can run the ball down the other team's throats even when they know it's coming and we demoralize defenses, automatically keeping the ball out of the hands of the opposing teams offense. To that end C. J. Johnson and Juwan Thompson will be a high value target of interest.
LB's Brandson Marshall and Lerente McCray will be of interest to see if our developmental coaches have come up with something but my real curiosity will be with Larmin Barrow as there is some thought he could develop into an elite ILB. Nate Irving could take a step up developmentally as well but I just don't see his "ceiling" as being much higher than it already is.
Isaiah Burse has rated multiple comments from multiple sources re doing things that make him jump to attention. We may have a Welker type slot PLUS a return man much less likely to fumble than last year's heart attack in making. There's also a sense this kid's psyche borders on cocky over just self-confident, which is unusual in a rookie let alone an undrafted one.
There's no discomfort at all with the Center position this year as opposed to last with Man Ram having a year's experience under his belt and an ex-Redskin to make him work at remaining in the starting lineup. However, Matt Paradis film study has me highly intrigued with how far and how fast he could push to start.
There are a few other 2nd year and developmental players also on the radar. Why I don't know but Virgil Green's emergence intrigues, along with having an all-star cast of receivers, which promises to make our passing game a match up nightmare on virtually every snap. Duke Ihenaco, Quanterous Smith, Keyvon Webster, and Sylvester Williams fall into a like category of developmental progress. It's possible a real star could emerge from one or more of these guys.
There is a reasonable possibility that one or more of our new O linemen could push to start but it seems certain our backups will be a good deal better than the past and, with development, perhaps elite. In this case there are too many possibilities to try naming names.
In terms of interest, however, Osweiller overshadows them all for me. There are so many reasons to make training camp and preseason a major priority for him. One, this kid needs seasoning in case Manning goes down. Lot's of seasoning. Is he the "answer" to Manning's replacement? Can he play under pressure with blood running out of his nose? It take a ton of courage to stand in the pocket after getting kicked in the mouth play after play with the game on the line. We at least need to get a snapshot of these things.
Too bad the only three practices available to the public are packed so close together. The scrimmage will probably be one I will attend and I can't wait to get a close up view of the guys mentioned above.