Keep Pounding!

Dave HaseldenPre-SeasonLeave a Comment

Once the Broncos play in what has been dubbed as a SB 50 rematch, so much will have changed. And for the better I hasten to add!

Yes we have lost 1 or 2 pieces off last season’s No1 D, but they have been replaced by in my opinion equally as good or even better replacements. We will have a brand new Signal caller, and there’s a 2 out 3 chance he’ll be an unknown commodity, and that is very hard for any Defensive coordinator to pre empt. My biggest bug bearer last season was the inconsistent running game.

Was it a case of the O Line weren’t making the gaps, or where the RB corps not converting their chances? At times I blamed the running backs for their lack of foresight and anticipation, then there were times I blamed the line for not showing the gaps. I got frustrated when watching any game and it appeared that every RB from any team was making 4, 5, 6 + yards per carry, and ours where making sod all. I was quite surprised to see CJ and Ronnie’s seasons finishing stats at how many yards they actually got between them.The frustration told me it should have been a lot less. And it felt like a lot less.

After having said that I was a bit disappointed when we gave CJ a low tender and he became all but briefly a Miami Dolphin. Was this again a ploy by Elway to see what other teams valued him at? I think so. I am glad he’s back because I think he will cause some damage this season behind that ZBS friendly new O Line. He is what I call a pounder and will make the hard yards. That TD he scored in the SB took some scoring, and i think only he could have scored it.

Ronnie Hillman has also been re-signed, again and he seemed to go on longer runs than CJ last season, although I feel he may get cut or sent to the practice squad, come the final 53 man roster. Not really a waste of this year’s money when we re-signed him before the draft and he is insurance. This was a big draft for the ground game.

This year’s draft was massive in respect of what Coach Kubiak’s intentions are for the team going forward. He is renowned for playing the Zone Blocking Scheme and sort of had a hybred version last season to accommodate Peyton. We didn’t have the best O Line to play any system really, but it did improve over the course of the season and was very good at protecting Peyton in the Post season.

As far as the Ground game is concerned it starts with the Offensive Line, and its ability to create the gaps and blocks needed to allow them to hone their skills and churn up the yardage needed. We have a revamped line, and most notable losses are Evan Mathis and Louis Vasquez to free agency, and we traded Biscuit Bones Ryan Clady to the Jets, after promising he would do a team friendly rework of his contract, only to seemingly renege on something he had said and pre empted himself. The only thing I can think of, is that greed (like Brock), got the better of him. How can anyone who hasn’t significantly contributed anything of any real meaning really believe he’s still worth that amount of money?

How Elway pulled off the Signing of Left tackle Russell Okung that was a really team friendly deal (take note Greedy Clady), is anyone’s guess, but Okung himself wanted to join the team and even spurned the use of an agent to strike his own deal, which included incentive bonuses that only amounted to 5 million this season, with no guaranteed money. This is something of a coo as he could have stayed at the Seahawks but decided on Denver instead.

The team picked up Donald Stephenson from division rivals Kansas City and suddenly the O Line looked something like. I love the McGovern pick up in the draft too and with the ever reliable Matt Paradis at Centre we suddenly on paper have a reason for the Running Backs to do some damage. Then there was this years draft which has excited me more than any other, where the concentration was on the ground game.

I’m here to take someone’s job.

Devontae Booker Denver’s 4th round pick out of Utah will wear number 20. He has stated he is here to take someone’s job. Now this can be seen 2 ways. He is either a confident Young man who is willing to back himself and is here to displace someone. Or he is an arrogant young gun who has a lot to learn to learn.I believe the first. I would be a touch worried if I was Ronnie Hillman.

The former Washington State and junior-college star ran 31 times in his first three games with Utah in 2014. He then ran for an average of 130 yards a game through the rest of the season. That was then followed up with a second-team All-Pac-12 senior campaign (1,261 yards, 11 TD in 10 games) before he tore his meniscus, which then sidelined him early. His power, quickness and elusiveness through a gap, and receiving ability (80 receptions in 2014-2015) give him an excitement factor lacking from most collegiate backs.

If this can be replicated to the NFL, then we have a running back to not only dethrone Hillman as 2nd starter but to push C.J Anderson for no 1 spot.

Fullback of promise.

Denver’s 6th round pick up of FB Andy Janovich, out of Nebraska who is 6-1, and 238 lbs , seems like a beast. He just wants to put his helmet into someone to achieve his goal! He fits the bill perfectly to help out when opposing defenses want to bring an extra man into the box. Also seen as monster on special teams he can also catch a ball when needed.

This one of the more exciting prospects of this years draft, as it means Kubiak’s offense is coming together how he envisioned it.

I have always loved a 2 in the back field set, as this is where the thrill of the not knowing comes into place. All positions are set for a run play even the TE lines up and blocks like it’s a run, a little boot leg later when the Receiver is down field and before you know it TOUCHDOWN DENVER!!!

Well that’s the scenario I play out in my head at least.

If all fails kick it away.

The pick of 6-5 219 lb Punter Riley Dixon in the 7th round was done to eliminate the risk of losing him as a free agent, should send a shiver down Colquit’s spine. This lad sent a 75 yarder up during the season and can play quite well if the team needs to punt fake! We’ve all seen the video right?
Britton was another who frustrated me during the season and felt he was only here for a payday. He only got good in the play offs, which shows inconsistency to me, something no one needs on a team.

Currently the OTA’s are making Britton up his game,and he is doing, however Dixon has been signed to a rookie deal which naturally means the Broncos are serious about him.
Dixon is putting up punts with more Hang time than Britton is. And is matching him on YPP. I personally think Dixon will win the starting job and Colquitt will get cut.


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