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Courtland Sutton has strong chance to shine for Broncos in rookie year

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Our player review series continues with Sutton, who has been a standout player the first five practices of training camp.

Casey Barrett- Mile High Report

The hype train for Courtland Sutton is near full capacity.

And it’s damn fun to watch.

Through the first five days of Denver Broncos training camp, the rookie wide receiver has been one of the standout players. As a rookie. He’s been consistent, and positioned himself to be a potential star for this team.

Will Sutton continue this trend through the second week of training camp and into the first preseason game or will it fall off?

Name: Courtland Sutton
Position: Wide Receiver
Height: 6’3”
Weight: 218
Age: 22
Experience: Rookie
College: Southern Methodist

The Good

Sutton already has become a weapon in the redzone for Case Keenum. Sutton has the deadly combo of size (6-foot-3) and strong hands, and he uses both to his advantage. That’s a huge reason for the hype. Most of the catches he’s made have come in the end zone. For an offense that has struggled, to say the least, to score touchdowns the last two seasons, that is one of the most positive signs at camp.

That Keenum and Sutton have a rapport this early is another positive. The chemistry in place after five days should continue to build as camp unfolds and they play in the first preseason game.

As Adam Malnati and I talked about on the latest MHR Radio Podcast, what Sutton is doing as a rookie this early should make fans excited. But also how he’s doing it. As Domata Peko said on Wednesday, Sutton reminds him of Cincinnati Bengals receiver A.J. Green. High praise, and if Sutton is anywhere close to Green ... fans should get the tingles.

I won’t go that far, but it is exciting; especially when you consider how much Denver has struggled in the red zone. The key now is to ensure this isn’t a flash in the sky.

The Bad

It’s hard to find anything “bad” per se, but until Sutton carries this over to a game and the regular season, skepticism in what Sutton is doing is warranted. We have seen hype for Broncos receivers before only to see it crash. The first name that comes to mind is Darius Watts. A fan on social media gave me an even more obscure name: Adrian Madise.

What makes or breaks NFL careers is consistency, and Sutton will have to carry over this initial spark. He can’t get comfortable or complacent because of this early success. Sutton must continue to put in the work and strive to get even better. He needs to correct the mistakes he’s making and learn the entire concept as opposed to just one position.

The positive is that Sutton continues to work hard and not “settle.” That shows he has the right attitude and approach. That doesn’t guarantee success, but it shows why he’s been able to standout the way he has and why he could make it stick.

“I know that we were so excited to get him,” offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave told the media on Wednesday. “We were just amazed that he was there when it was our turn to pick, and we’re hoping for big things from him. He’s going to be young and I know he’s going to improve as he goes along. He’s definitely still young, but it’s fun to work with young guys who have that drive and desire like he does.”

Quotable

Broncos receiver Emmanuel Sanders:

“I tell you what, we’ve got some good rookies. We’ve got some good rookies. I was just over there with my family and Courtland just runs over to say, ‘Hey, I’m going to take your helmet.’ And that’s what we need. That’s the type of rookies that I’m used to having. That’s the type of rookies that understand their role and that will lead to wins because when we have rookies that don’t want to be rookies it’s hard. When we have that type of mindset, that type of mentality, that ‘Hey, I’m going to be a rookie, but I’m still going to go out and contribute and make plays.’ I like that, and those guys are very open minded. We give and we both receive information. So far, so good.”

2018 Status

Only time will tell if the hype for Sutton sticks, and the skepticism is warranted until it happens. If it does, it’ll only make the Broncos offense that much better and with it the team.

Through the first five practices of training camp, though, Sutton has been impressive and damn fun to watch.

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