The Denver Broncos have announced that they have signed former Los Angeles Chargers and Seattle Seahawks defensive lineman, Forrest Merrill. To make room for him on the roster, the team has announced that they have designated guard Yasir Durant as waived/injured.
Merrill is a 6-1, 338-pound nose tackle who has been in the league since 2021. He was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Los Angeles Chargers in 2021 and spent his rookie season on and off their practice squad. The following season, he was waived/injured by the Chargers. This past May, Merrill was signed by the Seattle Seahawks but was released by the team in June. Now, he joins a Broncos team in the midst of their training camp in hopes of keeping his NFL dream alive.
Throughout his career, Merrill has appeared in a total of four NFL games, all of which came in 2021 with the Chargers, and has 4 career tackles.
If Merrill had the size, frame and length of many others in this draft class, he would be projected as a future starter. As it stands, his draft value will be much more limited due to his height, length and perceived limitations to his game. He’s a pure nose with below-average rush, but can be a handful to block as a run defender. His lack of physical traits will pull him off the board for some teams, but he might have a shot to earn a roster spot as a free agent.
Now, he joins a Broncos roster that needs some defensive line depth moving forward. They lost second-year player Eyioma Uwazurike before the start of training camp because he was suspended indefinitely for betting on games. The team did work out veteran Shelby Harris, but it was an exploratory visit mostly because he lived in Denver already. Nothing has come from that meeting as of yet.
At the end of the day, Merrill seems like a long shot to make the team. However, he has a chance to impress the coaches during the remaining training camp practices and during the three preseason games. If he can do that, he has a shot at sticking with the Broncos whether it be on their 53-man roster or on their practice squad.