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Broncos roster 2015: Ryan Harris

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 offensive lineman Ryan Harris.

Former Chiefs' right tackle Ryan Harris (#68) takes on the Broncos' DeMarcus Ware in September 2014.
Former Chiefs' right tackle Ryan Harris (#68) takes on the Broncos' DeMarcus Ware in September 2014.
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

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: Ryan Harris
Position: Tackle
Height: 6'5" Weight: 302
Age: 30 Experience: 8th
College: Notre Dame

Harris makes his third return to the Denver Broncos after being drafted as the 70th pick (third round) in the 2007 draft during the Mike Shanahan Era. He was one of a four-member draft class that included Jarvis Moss, Tim Crowder and Marcus Thomas. After being cut by Denver in 2010, he rejoined the Broncos in 2011 but did not see the field.

Harris' 2007 season was a quiet one, but upon Denver's first-round nod to Ryan Clady in 2008, the starting tackle duo of Clady and Harris combined to allow only one-and-a-half sacks for Jay Cutler in 2008.

2009 would see Harris start half of a season before breaking two toes and being forced to miss the remainder of the year.

Harris returned to the Broncos in 2010, starting 10 games (after sitting out the first five of the season recovering from back surgery) and participating in 11 games. He was not re-signed by Denver but joined the Philadelphia Eagles before spending 2011 rehabbing from another back surgery after being cut and receiving an injury settlement from the Eagles.

Denver would sign Harris again in January of 2012 to replace the injured Chris Kuper, but Harris did not see time on the field. He was released in August during the final roster cut and signed the next day by the Houston Texans.

Enter Gary Kubiak. From 2012-13 Harris saw time in 32 games with the Texans, starting five games over the two seasons.

The Kansas City Chiefs signed Harris in July of 2014, and he started 15 games at right tackle for the team last season.

For extra credit you can view the 2003 episode of MTV's True Life starring Harris entitled "I want the perfect body."

The good:

If you're worried about what might happen with the offensive line for the Broncos in 2015, well Harris (who started 15 games in 2014) is currently a backup on that line. Harris would likely take over at right tackle for Chris Clark if Clark were to move to left tackle in the event that rookie second round pick Ty Sambrailo doesn't win the position at training camp.

"The tackle situation, you know, I think we know who our three guys are right now that are battling and trying to get the other ones going," Kubiak added. "I should say four; now Ryan's involved and y’all can see [Harris has] been working a little bit."

In the last three seasons, Harris has had only seven penalties called on him. Pro Football Focus gave Harris a 2014 grade of -1.6 (which puts him about average) on 980 snaps. By the PFF scale, Harris did not have two "green" games in a row and went anywhere from a -4.2 to +3.6 during the season.

2014 Harris did anchor the right side of the offensive line that finished tenth in rushing yards (1,918), fifth in yards per attempt (4.6) and third in touchdowns (18) in 2014.

One of the best benefits to the team in having Harris on the roster will be the work he can put up in practice against those tumultuous outside linebackers that currently inhabit the top of the Broncos' depth chart: DeMarcus Ware, Von Miller and rookie Shane Ray.

The bad:

In 2013 for Houston, Harris gave up 28 quarterback disruptions (on only 293 snaps), giving him a pass blocking efficiency (PFF rank) for 92.7 percentage or 15th worst in the NFL.

There are injury concerns. However, if Harris is able to stay healthy in 2015 it would be his fourth season in a row that he has been healthy.


"I just have a tremendous familiarity with everything that we’ll be doing. Of course, it’s always different year to year, but again, that familiarity will really help me contribute and hopefully quickly."

Roster status:

Kubiak at one point lumped all four tackles together (Sambrailo, Clark, Harris and sophomore Michael Schofield), though at this exact moment left tackle appears to be Sambrailo's to lose and Clark has a stranglehold on right tackle.

That doesn't mean that the rookie Sambrailo won't struggle and possibly lose his starting position during training camp and the preseason. Denver would then likely push Clark over to left and Harris would likely start at right tackle, giving the Broncos a lot of experience on their starting offensive line.