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Broncos roster 2015: Darius Kilgo

Breaking down the Denver Broncos 2015 90-man roster, one player, one post, one day (roughly) at a time. Today we keep the football rolling looking at defensive tackle Darius Kilgo.

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A day-by-day Broncos player breakdown is something we've been doing since our days at BroncoTalk nearly a decade ago. This year the tradition continues as we look at the Denver Broncos roster heading into the 2015 season in our 90-in-90 series.

Name: Darius Kilgo
Position: Nose Tackle
Height: 6'3" Weight: 319lbs 
Age: 23   Experience: R
College: Maryland

The Denver Broncos selected nose tackle Darius Kilgo in the sixth round of this year's 2015 NFL Draft. After losing Terrance "Pot Roast" Knighton to the Washington Redskins in free agency, the Broncos needed to add some depth to the nose tackle position.

Kilgo had a productive collegiate career at the University of Maryland. He played four seasons there and totaled 125 tackles, 19.5 tackles for a loss, 5.5 sacks, 3 pass deflections, and 1 forced fumble.

I think when we looked at him, we thought obviously he’s got great size and he’s long and he’s got some athleticism to him and he plays hard.—John Elway

Ware mentions that playing the 4-3 defense as a defensive end was rough on his body, and the switch to his more natural position(Outside linebacker) should help him this season.

Denver Broncos General Manager John Elway mentioned Kilgo's size, length, and athleticism as some of the reasons why they decided to select him in the 6th round of the draft.

"I think when we looked at him, we thought obviously he’s got great size and he’s long and he’s got some athleticism to him and he plays hard."

Denver Broncos defensive coordinator Wade Phillips uses the nose tackle differently in his 3-4 defense than others. He looks for a one-gap defensive tackle who can attack upfield. This is something that Kilgo projects to do very well, and something that he believes he can do.

"I think I’ll fit great. Just coming out of Brian Stewart’s defense, which is my coordinator for the past three years, he’s had a lot of experience in the 3-4 defense, so I definitely feel like I’ll transition to the next level."

Kilgo is competing for playing time behind former first-round pick Sylvester Williams and backup Marvin Austin. Neither player has a solid grasp on the starting nose tackle position, so that spot could be wide open during Training Camp/Preseason.

The good:

As I said prior, while Sylvester Williams is penciled in as the starter at nose tackle, he is far from a lock to be the starter. This could end up benefiting Kilgo if he impresses during Training Camp and the Preseason. I do not think he'll earn the starting spot during camp/preseason, but I think he could end up pushing Marvin Austin for the backup spot.

Kilgo possesses a strong upper body and is hard to move from the point of attack. This should help Kilgo be a solid run defender in the NFL.

Here are the positives I listed for Kilgo in my scouting report on him.

  • Has really good upper body strength
  • Rarely gets moved backwards
  • Solid run defender
  • Looks like a nose tackle
  • Fires off the line
  • Has strong. physical, and aggressive hands
  • Moves well in space
  • A one gap nose tackle
  • Experienced, a three-year starter
  • Can be a "bully" on the defensive line

The bad:

The one big knock on Kilgo is that he is his pass rushing ability. He appears(right now at least) to be a run stuffer only. This will be something that new defensive line coach Bill Kollar will look to improve on during camp.

Here are the negatives I listed for Kilgo in the scouting report I did on him.

  • Plays a little too upright sometimes
  • Not a pass rusher
  • Needs to improve his hand technique at the point of attack
  • Needs to disengage blocks better
  • Doesn't have the strongest lower half
  • His snap anticipation needs to be improved

Kilgo does need to work on his game a bit before he can reach his full potential. The Broncos do have a very good defensive line coach in Bill Kollar, so hopefully he can get the most out of Kilgo.


Kilgo on not being invited to the NFL Scouting Combine.

"It definitely motivated me," Kilgo said. "It definitely hit a nerve, but there's a lot of guys who don't get invited to the Combine who get drafted."

Roster status:

Kilgo will be fighting for a roster spot this summer. His spot is somewhat secure because he is a draft pick, but since Kilgo is only a sixth-round pick his roster spot is far from being a lock. A good showing during Training Camp and the Preseason would do Kilgo well. He is also a potential practice squad addition for the Broncos.