The Denver Broncos addressed their starting right tackle position during free agency when they gave former Miami Dolphins first-round pick, Ja’Wuan James. He will pair with former Broncos first-round pick Garett Bolles as the teams starting tackles in 2019. This should be an improved unit, especially with Offensive Line guru Mike Munchak joining the Broncos coaching staff. However, the depth behind these two is a bit questionable, especially after losing versatile reserve Billy Turner during free agency to the Green Bay Packers.
The Broncos did little to address the tackle depth during the offseason and will have an interesting competition for the third tackle position during the summer. Now with that said, the Broncos do have 2019 second-round pick Dalton Risner and Elijah Wilkinson with tackle experience in their background, but both are projected as guards as of now. So this leaves the third tackle job open for undrafted rookie, Quinn Bailey.
Bailey is a 6’6”, 323lb offensive tackle who played his college ball at Arizona State. He joined the Broncos shortly after the conclusion of the 2019 NFL Draft as an undrafted free agent and will compete this summer for a roster spot.
Here are the accolades Bailey achieved during this collegiate tenure at Arizona State via thesundevils.com.
- Local offensive lineman that improved dramatically during his time at Arizona State.
- Member of the Pac-12 All-Conference team (Honorable Mention)
- Started every game at right tackle for ASU this season and has made 34 starts over his career at ASU.
- Bailey is 20th among all offensive tackles in the FBS with just one sack allowed this season.
- Received Randall McDaniel Outstanding Lineman Award at the annual Football Award Banquet
- His 12 total pressures allowed are 7th among all Pac-12 offensive tackles and tied for 36th among all FBS tackles nationally.
Bailey brings multi-year starting experience and versatility to the Broncos as well. With limited competition at the tackle position behind the two starters, Bailey has a good shot at cracking the 53-man roster if he impresses this summer.
As I have stated above, the competition for the third tackle/swing tackle position isn’t very deep. Currently they have journeyman Jake Rodgers and fellow UDFA tackle Nathan Jacobson as the only other true tackles on the roster. The other options are Dalton Risner(starting left guard) and Elijah Wilkinson who is listed as a guard and could push for the starting right guard spot(Leary’s health is always a question). So Bailey has a good of shot as any to be that guy.
Also, he was a highly graded pass blocker in college according to Pro Football Focus which certainly only helps his cause. He earned a 84.4 overall grade which was ranked as 7th best out of 90 qualifiers.
#Broncos UDFA RT Quinn Bailey earned a pass-blocking grade of 84.4 over the last two seasons - 7th among 90 qualifying right tackles over that span and just 6 spots below Dalton Risner! #BroncosCountry— PFF DEN Broncos (@PFF_Broncos) May 22, 2019
He brings multiple years of starting experience, versatility, and reliable health to the Broncos offensive line. With offensive line guru Mike Munchak coaching the teams o-line this season, someone like Bailey could be the Broncos next UDFA star.
Well, anytime you’re an undrafted free agent, the road to an NFL roster is tough and filled with many obstacles. That road for Bailey doesn’t appear as tough as others, but a roster or even a practice squad spot is far from a guarantee. If he(and the other OT’s) do not impress right away, the Broncos could bring in a veteran to serve as their swing tackle. This honestly is the most likely outcome for this position, but Bailey could change that. They also have Risner(who could easily start at right tackle) on the roster so he could be their third tackle, but that hasn’t been confirmed or denied as of yet.
Quinn Bailey’s roster status with the Broncos
Well, as I have said multiple times in this article, the road to a roster spot for Bailey is pretty clear. Limited competition and if he performs well enough during the summer, he could easily secure that backup tackle job. With that said, a potential Practice Squad spot does seem much more likelier for Bailey.
The leash will be short for Bailey like with most UDFA’s. If he struggles out of the gate and/or has to deal with injuries, then his spot on the team quickly becomes in jeopardy. He will need to hold his own in practice, listen to Munchak and learn from him, and stay healthy, he should be good.
I am personally anxious to see how this battle plays out during the summer.