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: Shelley Smith
Height: 6'4" Weight: 310
Age: 28 Experience: 6
College: Colorado State
So why is this journeyman who hailed from Colorado State when he first joined the ranks of the NFL 5 years ago getting a shot here with an offensive line that is clearly in flux?
The first thing most will jump at is the familiarity that Gary Kubiak has with Smith as it was Kubiak's Houston Texans that originally drafted Smith. This is a player that Kubiak knows and trusts to be able to play in his scheme.
The other point I would make is that we have a lot of young linemen who need to develop and many of them are up for starting spots on the line. If they don't pan out, this is the kind of guy you want to have ready to step in as he has already shown that he can handle the game at the pro level.
Also please keep in mind that his season in Miami very well could have been affected by the sprained knee he had around week 3. This may be another player who takes some big strides to be an impact guy for our team even if that role is as a back up much like what we saw from Marvin Austin, Jr. last year.
The good: Smith can play in this system day one without needing to learn most of it. He has familiarity with it and with Kubiak. He has experience and that means a lot in this league. Also, he's a CSU guy. How can you not dig that?
The bad: Smith's most recent body of work really did stink. His pass blocking looked bad, his run blocking looked bad, and there wasn't much to celebrate for his play on the field. The good thing is that our coaching staff won't have a hang-up on playing new guys. If Smith can't beat out some noob guards then the team, then he'll be enjoying a lot of bench.
Status: The problem with this head-scratching signing is that even if we cut Smith, he'll cost us $1M in dead cap space. That leads me to believe that our coaching staff really believes in this guy. He's going to in all likelihood be on our roster come week 1 even if that is as a back-up lineman.