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Broncos release their updated depth chart with a few surprises

A few surprises.

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

With the roster trimmed to 53 players and the Thursday Night opener only days away, the defending Super Bowl Champion Denver Broncos released their opening week depth chart.


Position 1st 2nd 3rd Other
Wide Receiver Demaryius Thomas Bennie Fowler Jordan Taylor
Left Tackle Russell Okung Ty Sambrailo

Left Guard Max Garcia Connor McGovern

Center Matt Paradis James Ferentz

Right Guard Michael Schofield Darion Weems

Right Tackle Donald Stephenson Ty Sambrailo

Tight End Virgil Green Jeff Heuerman Jon Phillips
Wide Reciever Emmanuel Sanders Cody Latimer Jordan Norwood
Running Back C.J. Anderson Devontae Booker Kapri Bibbs
Quarterback Trevor Siemian Paxton Lynch Austin Davis
Fullback Andy Janovich


  • While most assumed Michael Schofield would be the Broncos swing tackle, he is listed as the starting right guard for the Broncos. I like this move and hope Schofield proves to be better inside than he was on the outside.
  • With Schofield playing guard the Broncos moved 2015 second-round Ty Sambrailo back to tackle. It was assumed that he would be the starting right guard, but they decided he was best served as the Broncos swing tackle.
  • Both wide receivers Cody Latimer and Bennie Fowler are listed ahead of veteran slot receiver Jordan Norwood on the depth chart. It will be interesting to see who mans the slot when the Broncos go the three receiver sets. I'd imagine the Broncos have plays for all three receivers in the playbook.
  • Rookie Paxton Lynch is listed as Trevor Siemian's backup. There was some debate about this, but after Lynch's solid preseason showing he earned this roll for now.


Position 1st 2nd 3rd Other
Defensive End Derek Wolfe Billy Winn
Nose Tackle Sylvester Williams Darius Kilgo Kyle Peko
Defensive End Jared Crick Adam Gotsis
Strongside Outside Linebacker Von Miller Shaquil Barrett Dekoda Watson
Weakside Outside Linebacker DeMarcus Ware Shane Ray
Inside Linbacker Brandon Marshall Corey Nelson
Inside Linebacker Todd Davis Zaire Anderson
Left Cornerback Aqib Talib Kayvon Webster
Right Cornerback Chris Harris Jr. Bradley Roby Lorenzo Doss
Strong Safety T.J. Ward Will Parks
Free Safety Darian Stewart Justin Simmons


  • With Vance Walker out for the year, veteran Jared Crick gets the start at defensive end opposite of Derek Wolfe. Veteran Billy Winn figures to get some playing time as well.
  • 2015 first-round pick Shane Ray is DeMarcus Ware's backup on the depth chart, but I expect him to play more than the veteran pass rusher. Ware is going to have a pitch count for each game I believe so when he isn't out there, look for Ray to be his replacement.
  • As expected, rookie Justin Simmons is the backup at free safety and should see plenty of playing time this year. Also, rookie safety Will Parks is listed as T.J. Ward's backup as well.

Special Teams

Position 1st 2nd 3rd Other
Kicker Brandon McManus
Kickoff Brandon McManus
Punter Riley Dixon
Holder Riley Dixon
Longsnapper Casey Kreiter
Punt Return Jordan Norwood Emmanuel Sanders
Kick Return Cody Latimer Jordan Norwood


  • As expected, veteran Jordan Norwood is the Broncos punt return man. The Broncos did workout vetern Brandon Tate on Saturday so this could change, but we will see.
  • The real surprise here is seeing Cody Latimer listed as the starting kick return man. He does have the size and speed to do it so hopefully, he does a good job at it.