clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Broncos roster review: Defensive lineman Matt Henningsen

Could the former sixth round pick be in line to start in his second season?

San Francisco 49ers v Denver Broncos Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images

After having an accomplished career at Wisconsin, Matt Henningsen entered the 2022 NFL Draft. He did not hear his name called during the first two days, but ultimately in the sixth round of the 2022 NFL Draft, the Denver Broncos selected him with their 206th overall selection.

Henningsen is a 6’3”, 291-pound defensive lineman who showed flashes during his rookie year when given a chance and could be in line to start this upcoming season. The Broncos lost Dre’Mont Jones and DeShawn Williams to free agency so there are spots open along their defensive line. The Broncos did sign Zach Allen during free agency to replace Dre’Mont Jones, but there is no clear Williams replacement on the roster. So, Henningsen has a shot to earn that job this summer.

Now, Henningsen is entering his first full NFL offseason and is looking to compete for a starting job this summer for the Denver Broncos. He will face some competition for that job, but after coming off a promising rookie season, we could see Henningsen go from a rotational player to a starter in his second season with the team.

Player Profile

Height: 6’3” | Weight: 291 pounds

Arm Length: 33 1/8 inches | Vertical: 37.5 inches

Age: 23 years old | Experience: Second season

2022 stats

Matt Henningsen played in all 17 games for the Broncos and totaled 21 total tackles, 2 tackles for a loss, and 1 sack.

Broncos defensive lineman Matt Henningsen’s 2023 outlook

After having a promising rookie season, especially for a sixth-round selection, Henningsen is competing for a starting job along the Broncos' defensive line. D.J. Jones will be the nose tackle while Zach Allen will replace Dre’Mont Jones at one of the defensive end spots. That leaves one spot open and Henningsen is in an open competition for that job.

He will be competing against Jonathan Harris, second-year player Eyioma Ewazurike, Jordan Jackson, Elijah Garcia, veteran Tyler Lancaster, and international player Haggai Ndubuisi for that other starting spot. There are no real clear favorites for that job from this group, so it will be interesting to see how it shakes out or if the Broncos need to add to this group again before the start of the season.

As for Henningsen, I like his chances from this group. He displayed his explosiveness off the snap during training camp, the preseason, and during the regular season. He also showed that he can be a solid run defender and get into the opposing team's backfield to make a stop. I think he can develop into a very solid two-down run-stopper at the very least for the Broncos and take over the role DeShawn Williams occupied the last couple of seasons.

Final Thoughts

The Broncos' only real notable addition to their defensive line this offseason was signing Zach Allen during free agency. He will replace Dre’Mont Jones, but for the other open spot, it appears they are hoping one of the young guys can step up and take over that job. As of right now, I think Matt Henningsen is the likely candidate for that job.

Of the names he is competing against, he looked like the better player last year and I believe he can continue to grow and improve this offseason. His explosiveness of the line has always stood out to me and I think that could give him an edge over the rest. With that said, this appears to be an open competition so the same could be said for a number of these guys.

Heading into training camp, this is one of the positional battles I am most interested in learning about. Will it be Henningsen who steps up? We shall see.


Do you think Matt Henningsen wins the starting job?

This poll is closed

  • 68%
    (354 votes)
  • 31%
    (165 votes)
519 votes total Vote Now