When Aqib Talib and Michael Crabtree were both ejected during the game between the Denver Broncos and Oakland Raiders, rookie cornerback Brendan Langley was thrust into action and the Raiders exploited it.
Langley finished the day with an overall Pro Football Focus grade of 32.9 after being torched in the secondary. He was drafted with the expectation that it would be a few seasons before he would be ready to push for significant playing time, since he had only started playing the position two years ago.
“He’s definitely developing,” Defensive coordinator Joe Woods said of Langley on Thursday. “His technique has gotten better. He’s making plays on the ball. He’s had some clinical plays in practice. When you get out there on Sunday, it’s a whole different deal. Those are live bullets. It’s real football. It’s more pressure. He has to learn that the football is the same. It doesn’t matter if you’re in practice or gameday. It’s the same route, same techniques. Just trust it.”
That is a lot to ask of a rookie in that situation. However, his experience and technique will eventually catch up to his athleticism and desire to compete. When that happens, the Broncos are going to have a very good player on their hands.
“Athletically, he’s very gifted,” Woods said. “He’s a big corner. He’s very strong. He has great suddenness and burst for a big corner. Again, it’s just going to be reps, time and the experience he gets in game situations. But, in the long run, I feel like he’ll be a really good player for us.”
On the Crockett and Stout show on Thursday, they caught up with Langley and the kid has the right mentality to succeed in the NFL. Hopefully he can play through the bad games and keep grinding his way. He’ll have some fantastic teachers on the field and in practice. It’s only a matter of time for this guy.