clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

HT: So much to look forward to in Training Camp right now

The offseason - especially July - gets bogged down with silly Top 10 lists, lots of speculation and unfortunately too much talk about nothing. But there are tons of great story lines to talk about on this Broncos team as we get closer to actually playing the game of football.

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, Broncos Country!

So now that we've made it through the Demaryius Thomas drama, it's time to finally, finally start talking about Von Miller's contract negotiations that are just around the corner.

In 2016.

Next season.

Yeah, that's the season that comes after the one we haven't even played yet ... or that our monster edge rusher hasn't even performed in yet.

Don't get me wrong, I'm all about signing Miller next year, and assuming he shows us more of what he has given us glimpses of the past three seasons (which I'm fully anticipating, despite Adam Schein's insane omission of Miller from the top players of the 2011 draft class ...whaaat??)  I'm going to be in the "Pay that man his money" camp. And I understand the interest in Miller's contract based on the potential cap/cash impact of Thomas' five-year deal signed Wednesday.

But after the rumors, speculation, misdirection, circus sidelights from the NFLPA and everything in between over the Thomas deal this last month, I can't think of an off-the-field issue I'm not looking forward to more than the media circus that's going to come with the Miller contract negotiations (and if there happens to be a "Is Manning coming back?" question next offseason, I might have to retreat to Germany for the entire offseason).

Personally, I'm hoping Elway and Miller pull a Chris Harris, Jr. and get that contract hammered out in December while no one is even paying attention. I realize that's highly unlikely given the implications Manning's contract could have on Miller plus other free agents that include most of our starting defense, such as Derek Wolfe, Malik Jackson, Danny Trevathan, Brandon Marshall, but a girl can dream, right?

But back to important stuff...the actual upcoming season. The one that officially begins two weeks from today when Training Camp gets underway and the Broncos have two weeks to prepare for the 2015-16 season that will open with a trip to Seattle and Century Link Field for the first preseason game Aug. 14 at the Seahawks.

While that is only a preseason game - and as usual we won't expect to see our starters for very long or any flashy plays on either side of the ball - I consider this first preseason game to have a little more importance because of all the off-the-field drama with players, new coaches, new scheme, "Iron sharpens iron" mentality, etc.

An away game at Seattle should be hyped, and I want to see this year's Broncos show some serious chutzpah right out of the gate. Even if the starting offense and defense only play a few series, I'm looking forward to finding out if this 3-4 is going to be as aggressive as we hope and if the offense will show it can once again be a well-oiled machine in the running and passing games.

I know preseason games are for figuring out players and plays, but I want to see the winning attitude we thought we were getting last year. I want to see that "chip on our shoulder" be abundantly clear on defense from Harris, Aqib Talib and T.J. Ward.

I'm expecting Miller plus veteran linebackers Danny Trevathan and Brandon Marshall and perennial underdog-but-also-Pro-Bowler Harris Jr. to get that defense fired up. Really hoping to see that Miller/DeMarcus Ware pass rush in full force and anticipating a fully healthy Trevathan/Marshall duo to wreak absolute havoc on the inside.

I'm very interested in how Peyton Manning handles the play action/TE-heavy Kubiak offensive plan and how Brock Osweiler can run an offense when given a little more to work with.

I cannot wait to find out whether Cody Latimer is ready to step into the offensive spotlight, especially while Thomas slowly gets back into playing and the second-year receiver tries to prove he can handle the show.

Which running back looks the best of the backups? (Because, yeah, I've got C.J. Anderson at No. 1 on the depth chart!)

And like so many of us, I'll be very excited (if not completely nervous) to see how the offensive line shakes out in this ZBS.

So much exciting stuff to look forward to right now. On the field.

No rumors needed.

Horse Tracks

Training Camp Preview: Outside linebackers
The 3-4 alignment will have Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware working from a stand-up alignment -- and with Shane Ray, this could be the best unit on the team.

What do John Elway’s "expectations" comments mean for Demaryius Thomas? — The Sports Show
The Denver Post guys consider what "expectations" are coming for Demaryius Thomas from Elway and the Broncos.

Broncos Camp 2015: Brandon Marshall, Danny Trevathan Update
Broncos Camp 2015: We have the latest updates on Brandon Marshall and Danny Trevathan, courtesy of the bash brothers themselves!

John Elway has plan for Von Miller - The Denver Post
General manager John Elway has more than just Plan A for the Broncos. Over the past 13 months, as the team negotiated with receiver Demaryius Thomas on a long-term contract, he had more to think about than the one deal.

King: Patriots' penalty should be reduced if Brady's is cut
SI's Peter King tells Dan Patrick that if Tom Brady's suspension is reduced, then the Patriots' Deflategate penalties should be as well. SI's Peter King tells Dan Patrick that if Tom Brady's suspension is reduced, then the New England Patriots' Deflategate penalties should be as well.

AFC West Q&A: Who will be the division MVP? - AFC West - ESPN
Will veteran quarterbacks Peyton Manning and Philip Rivers battle it out to be the division MVP or will another player step up?

Peyton Manning wins ESPY for record touchdown 509
Peyton Manning's record touchdown No. 509 last season won an ESPY for Best Record-breaking Performance.

The five most memorable moments from Peyton Manning’s ESPY win
Here are the five best moments from QB Peyton Manning's ESPY win.

T.J. Ward, Aqib Talib not happy about NFL top 100 omissions
Broncos Pro Bowlers T.J. Ward, Aqib Talib and Chris Harris were not included in the NFL's top 100 list of 2015, a ranking decided by their peers.

Ranking backup QBs from No. 1 to 32 -
With a whopping 54 signal-callers starting games last season, the backup quarterback position is more important than ever before. Around the NFL's Marc Sessler ranks them from No. 1 to 32. Any guesses where Brock is?

Number of the Year: The Stat That Will Define Denver Broncos' 2015 Season | Bleacher Report
Team total rush yards need to be at 2,000 yards to be a Super Bowl contender, says Chris Simms.

Dusty Saunders: Ron Zappolo will bring zest to Broncos booth - The Denver Post
Zappolo left the sports beat in 2000, joining KDVR-Channel 31 as the key anchor when the Fox outlet began local news programming. He retired in April 2013. Sports, however, remain his first broadcasting love.

Jets say arrow is pointing up on Quinton Coples -
Former Jets first-round pick Quinton Coples registered a career-high 6.5 sacks last season under what was one of Rex Ryan's most productive sack defenses.

Cameron Heyward signs six-year deal with Steelers -
Cameron Heyward will be in Pittsburgh for the foreseeable future. The Steelers announced that they have signed the defensive end to a six-year deal.

Pain Rankings: No. 4, the Detroit Lions -
The Lions are one of the oldest franchises in football -- that means their fans have suffered longer than most. Dan Hanzus wades through the pain in Motown.

Will T.Y. Hilton leave the Colts in 2016? -
T.Y. Hilton is one of the most underpaid players in football. It doesn't sound like the Colts will give him an extension and Hilton isn't thrilled. Could Hilton have a new team in 2016?

Contract talks between Wilson, Seahawks to end at start of camp -
By the time Russell Wilson reports to training camp, the contract talks between his camp and the Seattle Seahawks will be over. Does that mean free agency is an inevitability for the QB? Ian Rapoport explores.