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Broncos Training Camp 2016: Pre-Training Camp 53 man roster projection

With Von Miller's contract in the books, let's start looking at Training Camp.

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

With the Denver Broncos only a little over a week away from reporting for Training Camp, I decided to take a shot at predicting the Denver Broncos final 53-man roster.

This pre-training camp edition is my current perception for how things will go, but it could change drastically over the next couple of weeks based on reports from training camp and performances in the preseason games.



Who makes it: Mark Sanchez, Paxton Lynch, and Trevor Siemian

Who gets cut: No one


This is an easy one to figure out. The Broncos are only carrying three quarterbacks so likely all three are making the team.

The only ways one of these guys get cut is if Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch make Mark Sanchez expendable. The other one is if Trevor Siemian really struggles, and the Broncos like one of the other younger quarterbacks released by one of the other 31 teams.

Now I think both of those scenarios are unlikely right now but something that could play out.

As for who lands where on the depth chart? That's the million dollar question and the one battle we'll be watching during Training Camp and the Preseason.

Running back(6):

Who makes it: C.J. Anderson, Devontae Booker, and Juwan Thompson

Who gets cut: Ronnie Hillman, Kapri Bibbs, and Cyrus Gray


This one will be a fun one to watch during Camp and the Preseason.

Can C.J. Anderson have a bounce back season after having a disappointing 2015 season? Can rookie Devontae Booker push Anderson for the starting job? Can 2015 team rushing leader Ronnie Hillman make the team? Can Juwan Thompson crack the roster again in 2016? What about the local guy/fan favorite Kapri Bibbs, can he finally make the roster? How about the forgotten vet Cyrus Gray? Is he a camp body or a guy who can crack the roster?

Right now, I just see C.J. Anderson, Devontae Booker, and Juwan Thompson making the roster. Anderson and Booker will be your 1A and 1B while Thompson's special team's skills/versatility help him make the team.

This means 2015 team rushing leader Ronnie Hillman will be cut or traded. His fate was sealed when the Broncos drafted Devontae Booker. The number three running back has to play special teams, and I do not see Hillman contributing there.

Kapri Bibbs could force the Broncos to keep four running backs, but his NFL window is closing quickly.

Veteran Cyrus Gray is probably a camp body, but Kubiak's system has turned "nobodies" into stars, so we'll see!


Who makes it: Andy Janovich

Who gets cut: N/A


The Broncos only have one fullback on the roster so this is a pretty easy decision. Also, the Broncos spent a draft pick on Janovich, so I think that helps solidify his roster spot.

Wide Receiver(13):

Who makes it: Demaryius Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders, Cody Latimer, Bennie Fowler, Jordan Taylor, and Bralon Addison

Who gets cut: Mose Frazier, Durron Neal, DeVier Posey, Kalif Raymond, and Jordan Norwood


This will be another fun battle to watch during Training Camp and the Preseason.

Obviously, Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders are locks to make the team, but everything behind those two is up in the air.

I think Bennie Fowler and Cody Latimer are semi-locks to make the team. Bennie showed he can play in the NFL last year, and I don't think they're giving up on Latimer just yet. It is a make or break year for him, though.

Fan favorite Jordan Taylor cracks the roster this year. I see him having a strong preseason and Training Camp. I even think he'll push Latimer and Fowler for playing time.

Now the final spot comes down to special teams. Can Bralon Addison beat out veteran Jordan Norwood or fellow rookie Kalif Raymond? I don't know, but right now I'm going with the former Oregon playmaker.

Tight end(17):

Who makes it: Jeff Heuerman, Virgil Green, Garrett Graham. and Henry Krieger-Coble

Who gets cut: Manasseh Garner


This position is full of question marks. Can 2015 third-round pick Jeff Heuerman win the starting job? Can veteran Virgil Green finally step up? How about veteran Garrett Graham? Can he find success under Kubiak again? And can rookies Henry Krieger-Coble and Manasseh Garner push for a roster spot?

Ultimately I think Heuerman and Green are locks to make the team. After that is where things get interesting.

The veteran Graham knows Gary Kubiak's offense, and has had success with him in the past, but has really struggled the past two seasons. Can he have success again or will he struggle again?

I have Henry Krieger-Coble making the team. He's a receiving threat, and could outplay Graham in that department during Camp/Preseason. Now he will need to show he can add some muscle to his frame and improve his blocking first if he wants a shot at making the team.

I know very little about Manasseh, but he could also push Krieger-Coble and Graham for a roster spot, but ultimately I think he will be cut.

Offensive Tackles(20):

Who makes it: Russell Okung, Donald Stephenson, and Michael Schofield

Who gets cut: Cameron Jefferson, Lars Hanson, Justin Murray, Kyle Roberts, and Darius Weems


The Broncos signed free agents Russell Okung and Donald Stephenson this winter to help upgrade their offensive tackle positions. Both seem likely starters at left tackle and right tackle.

One reason for that is the lack of depth behind them. Michael Schofield is the next best option, and he had his own struggles last season. I think Schofield is the swing tackle right now unless one of the younger guys step up.

I'm not considering Ty Sambrailo here because I think he will start at guard for the Broncos.


Who makes it: Max Garcia, Ty Sambrailo, and Connor McGovern

Who gets cut: Robert Myers Jr., Sam Brenner, and Aaron Neary


This one is pretty easy, but full of questions.

Right now, Sambrailo and Garcia will be your starters(first time) with rookie Connor McGovern being their backup and/or pushing them for a starting job.

I wanted to put Robert Myers Jr. here, but the numbers crunching kept him off the list, unfortunately.


Who makes it: Matt Paradis and James Ferentz

Who gets cut: Dillon Day


Paradis is your starter and Ferentz was his backup and was active for all 16 games last season.

I still think Dillon Day can push for a roster spot, but right now I have him on the outside looking in and being a strong practice squad option.

Defensive End(29):

Who makes it: Derek Wolfe, Vance Walker, Jared Crick, and Adam Gotsis

Who gets cut: Kenny Anunike, Shaneil Jenkins, and Eddie Yarbrough


This is a pretty easy group to figure out.

Wolfe and probably Walker are your starters, and Crick and Gotsis are your backups.

I have Kenny Anunike and rookies Jenkins and Yarbrough not making the team, but one of the three could push Jared Crick for a roster spot. Crick struggled big time last season so I think he is far from a roster lock.

Nose Tackle(32):

Who makes it: Sylvester Williams, Phil Taylor, and Darius Kilgo

Who gets cut: Kyle Peko, Calvin Heurtelou, and David Moala


This group is basically set in stone.

Sylvester Williams is your starter, and former first round pick Phil Taylor is his backup. Now Taylor has some health issues, so that is something that could hurt his roster status. The final spot goes to second-year player Darius Kilgo.

I have Kyle Peko not making the team, but he could push Kilgo for a roster spot at this position. Moala and Heurtelou are probably just depth guys.

Edge Rusher(36):

Who makes it: Von Miller, DeMarcus Ware, Shane Ray, and Shaquil Barrett

Who gets cut: Dekoda Watson, Vontarrius Dora, Kyle Kragen, and Sadat Sulleyman


This is a pretty easy group to figure out.

Von, Ware, Ray, and Shaq are locks. I could see Watson maybe making it, but right now I have him on the outside looking in.

It's a really strong group, so these UDFA's will have a really hard time making the squad. A strong showing could get them a Practice Squad spot.

Inside Linebacker(40):

Who makes it: Brandon Marshall, Todd Davis, Corey Nelson, and Zaire Anderson

Who gets cut: Dwayne Norman and Frank Shannon


This is an interesting group to watch.

Brandon Marshall is locked in as the starter and a team leader. After him? There are some questions.

Todd Davis looks to get the first crack to replace Danny Trevathan. Corey Nelson and Zaire Anderson will also push Davis for the job.

A name to keep an eye on is Frank Shannon. He had some off the field issues that kept him from being drafted, but there is talent there. Right now I have him on the outside looking in but could push for a spot.


Who makes it: Chris Harris Jr., Aqib Talib, Bradley Roby, Kayvon Webster, and Lorenzo Doss

Who gets cut: B.J. Lowery, Taurean Nixon, and John Tidwell


This is easy.

Harris, Talib, and Roby are your starters. Kayvon is your backup corner/special teams ace and Lorenzo Doss is just waiting for his opportunity.

If Talib is still hurt and/or suspended look for Webster or Doss to step up in his place.

Lowery, Nixon, and Tidwell never had a shot.


Who makes it: T.J. Ward, Darian Stewart, Justin Simmons, Will Parks, and Shiloh Keo

Who gets cut: Antonio Glover and Brandian Ross,


Ward and Stewart are your Broncos starters, and Justin Simmons and Will Parks are the Broncos backups/future at the position.

I think Shiloh Keo can stick as the veteran/special teams option as well.

A name to watch is rookie safety, Antonio Glover. He is highly athletic and has good size. He could push for a roster spot, but would the Broncos have three rookies at safety?

Special Teams(53):

Who makes it: Brandon McManus(K), Riley Dixon(P), and whoever wins the long-snapping job.

Who gets cut: Britton Colquitt and whoever doesn't win the long-snapping job.


Brandon McManus is coming off a solid 2015 season and is firmly entrenched as the Broncos starting kicker.

I have the Broncos going with rookie Punter Riley Dixon over veteran Britton Colquitt. Why draft a punter if you do not view him as the starter?

The Broncos will have a new long snapper this year and I'm sure it will be a super exciting competition but it is one I do not have the answer too.