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: Brandon Marshall
Height: 6'1" Weight: 250
Age: 25 Experience: 4
Let's go back to one year ago. The vast majority of Broncos fans either overlooked Marshall or confused him with the ex-Bronco, now New York Jets wide receiver. He basically was that guy we all called a "camp body". That all changed very quickly.
Marshall's opportunity arose when teammate and fellow linebacker Danny Trevathan suffered a fractured shin during the team's Training Camp practice. This injury would sideline Trevathan for weeks and left a gaping hole at weak-side linebacker. Marshall would take advantage of this opportunity and go on to do great things for the Broncos in 2014.
Marshall finished the season with a team-leading 113 tackles, 2 sacks, 1 forced fumble, and 1 interception. This type of production left many fans, media members, and probably teammates wondering where that defense would be if Marshall did not emerge into that type of player.
After a breakout 2014 season, many had high expectations for Marshall in 2015. However, those expectations took a minor hit this winter when news broke that he underwent surgery on his right foot to repair a Lisfranc injury.
The Lisfranc injury usually takes most players an entire year or so to return to 100%, so there are some questions about Marshall's health heading into Training Camp. He has been rehabbing that injury, and recently began running and making cuts which is a positive sign.
Oh you thought I wouldn't be ready for camp huh..... Shame on you #Slowfeetdonteat pic.twitter.com/O5YWYz8T8O— Brandon Marshall (@BMarshh54) July 16, 2015
Marshall expects to be ready to go for Training Camp, but I would expect the Broncos to ease him back into action.
Right now Marshall is penciled in as one of the starters at Inside Linebacker for the Broncos this year. If he and teammate Danny Trevathan can remain healthy this season I expect both players to top 100 tackles for Wade Phillips this year.
Marshall lead the Broncos in tackles last season and became a difference maker for them on defense. If healthy he is a tackling machine and gives the Broncos a young stud at the inside linebacker spot.
He's a three-down linebacker who can stuff the run, rush the passer if asked too, and can drop into coverage. He's the type of linebacker you need on your defense to be a top 5 defense in the league.
One positive is his health. As I said prior, he is currently rehabbing a Lisfranc injury, but he is already running and moving well. That's a positive sign because that injury tends to linger throughout the season.
The only issue here is that Lisfranc injury. As we saw with Ryan Clady last season, the injury can tend to linger throughout the season. It will be interesting to see how Marshall moves and if he can successfully play through the pain(if there is any) and can make it through the limitations(if there is any).
Marshall is expected to be one of the Broncos starters at inside linebacker in Wade Phillip's 3-4 defense. I expect we will see him play in other sub-packages as well.