When Danny Trevathan went down during the second defensive play of this past Sunday's game against the New York Jets with a knee injury a surprise player stepped up and helped replace Trevathan on the defense. That player being rookie seventh round linebacker Corey Nelson.
When Trevathan went down, reserve linebacker Brandon Marshall moved back to his role that he occupied during the first three weeks of the season, but the big surprise came when the defense was in the nickel packages. Instead of starting inside linebacker Nate Irving playing in the nickel role, rookie Corey Nelson took the field.
"He's a smart kid that's willing to learn and study, to do the things necessary to succeed," said Head Coach John Fox.
Nelson stepped up and played well in the absence of Trevathan. He lead the team with 7 total stops(3 solo stops, and 4 assists).
Nelson's work off the field during meetings and practices, and on the field on special teams caught the eye of some players like defensive tackle Terrance Knighton.
"He prepares well during the week. He asks a lot of questions. He's a knowledgeable guy. He's in the game. I have faith in him and I'm not worried about him showing up."
Nelson and linebacker Brandon Marshall are going to be very important for the Broncos down the stretch. With Trevathan being out for eight weeks these two will be key parts for the Broncos defense as they make their playoff push.
"We know Brandon can come in and fill Danny's role," said cornerback Chris Harris. "We still, of course, would love to have Danny and would love to have him out there, but I think there's no panic out here -- as long as Corey keeps improving."
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