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Horse Tracks: Broncos special teams looking to improve

Good Morning Broncos Country!

Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

After the Broncos ugly performance on special teams against the Seahawks, the special teams unit worked on covering kicks during practice all week. Safety and Special Teams ace David Bruton says that their struggles last week was a learning experience for the unit.

"It's a learning experience for us as a unit. We have a lot of young guys out there and a lot of guys. It's their first time under the lights, and against a good team, a team that has been in the Super Bowl two years running. We just have a lot of corrections that we have to make and eliminate the thinking. Just like on offense and defense, if you're thinking a lot, you're going to play slow, and I feel like we have a lot of young guys thinking a lot, so we didn't play as fast as we could. We definitely put an emphasis on that. Just playing free ball and just running through stuff and trying to make a play."

Bruton says they have to "hit the film study harder" and study their opponent and themselves on film so they can approve.

"We game plan all the time. It's not just go out there, run and try to hit somebody. There are schemes that you have to know, there are certain guys that you have to try and eliminate and you pick up tendencies, just like on offense and defense. So we just have to hit the film study a little harder, study not just our opponents, but ourselves and learn from that."

A lot of players who are fighting for a roster spot have to prove themselves on Special Teams, so hopefully we will see some improvement from this unit during tonight's game against the Houston Texans.

All eyes on the Kickers and Punters:

Another area of Special Teams that we all will be focusing on is the kicking, punting, and kickoff battles.

Connor Barth and Brandon McManus both looked good last week, but McManus has the edge in the kick off department. Barth showed improved leg strength but was kicking line drives with little hang time that lead to returns. So the performance of both kickers will be important to their future with the team.

It looks like Colquitt will be the punter, but a good showing by recently acquired Spencer Lanning could push him for the job. Lanning also can kickoff, and looked impressive during practice this week, so this will be an interesting battle to watch.

Horse Tracks:

What we learned: Chase Daniel is football's Crash Davis -
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Redskins acquire TE Derek Carrier in trade with 49ers -
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Evan Mathis set to visit Seattle Seahawks -
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Detroit Lions release safety Taylor Mays -
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Chargers' Melvin Gordon not expected to play Saturday -
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New York Jets beat Falcons, but Ryan Fitzpatrick & Co. struggle in - NFL Nation - ESPN
Ryan Fitzpatrick and the Jets' first-team offense managed one touchdown, coming against Atlanta's reserves on Friday night.

Robert Griffin III of Washington Redskins leaves game early due to injury
Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III "is fine" after being diagnosed with a concussion suffered Thursday vs. the Lions and is expected to play next week, a source said.

Eric Reid of San Francisco 49ers says he respects Chris Borland's retirement decision
Eric Reid addressed the interview former 49ers teammate Chris Borland gave ESPN that aired this week, in which the ex-inside linebacker detailed his reasons for his stunning retirement.

Cleveland Browns not ready to declare Josh McCown starting quarterback
The Cleveland Browns say they feel good about Josh McCown being No. 1 on the quarterback depth chart, but they're not ready to declare him the starter.

Randy Moss says fight vs. NFL is affecting New England Patriots QB Tom Brady
Former Patriots receiver Randy Moss sees great things from Tom Brady in practice but also sees that the quarterback "is human" and has been affected by his ongoing battle with the NFL.

Would Kam Chancellor sit out the year? | ProFootballTalk
Earlier today, MDS pointed out that Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor would lose more than $264,000 for each game check he misses, if his holdout extends into the regular season. The real question is whether he would he miss all 17 of the regular-season game checks.

McCoy, Cousins continue to out-play RG3 | ProFootballTalk
If Washington's quarterback depth chart were determined by on-field performance, Robert Griffin III would be firmly entrenched at third string. Although coach Jay Gruden insisted after Thursday's preseason game against the Lions that Griffin will remain the starter, that game showed once again wh...

Jim McMahon: I know Belichick is a liar, probably a cheater too | ProFootballTalk
Add longtime NFL quarterback Jim McMahon to the list of people who say you can't trust Bill Belichick. McMahon, who spent part of training camp and the preseason with the Browns in 1995 when Belichick was Cleveland's coach, says that Belichick lied to him about the Browns' intentions with him.

Alex Smith throws touchdown pass to a wide receiver | ProFootballTalk
The Kansas City Chiefs went the entire 2014 regular season without a single touchdown pass being caught by a wide receiver. Starting quarterback Alex Smith went all of the 2014 season - preseason included - without hooking up with a wide receiver for a touchdown.