Injuries kept Quinton Carter (knee, hamstring) and Greg Orton (ankle) out, and the team waived/injured wideout D'Andre Goodwin (ankle). Ronnie Hillman (hamstring) and Orlando Franklin (concussion) were present but did not practice, although Franklin did participate in the evening walkthrough.
Eric Decker (groin) was also back on the field but did not practice (he should be back today), and Demaryius connected with Peyton Manning several times to take full advantage of the spotlight (video).
Justin Bannan practiced with the starting defense, where Jason Hunter worked for the second straight day ahead of Robert Ayers, who just doesn't seem to be impressing Jack Del Rio all that much. It's early, but a permanent demotion of Ayers could be another massive hit to the Broncos' ill-fated 2009 draft class.
Brock Osweiler was again impressive, this time near the goal line; Ryan Harris remains behind Chris Clark at tackle in Franklin's stead; Del Rio says he plans to call plays from the sideline as he's always preferred.
It's only August 2, and we still have a week until preseason and five-and-change until the opener, but I happened upon this and had to share. Are you ready?
Unfortunately for fans who'd planned to attend, they apparently missed out on Peyton Manning & Co. running a successful two-minute drill (60 yards in 70 seconds with one timeout). Caleb Hanie and Adam Weber didn't fare as well, with their attempts ending with interceptions.
As mentioned last night, three receivers, including Eric Decker, suffered minor injuries; Ronnie Hillman also tweaked a hamstring. Orlando Franklin (concussion), Quinton Carter (hamstring, and now knee, too), and Joshua Moore (hamstring) remained sidelined.
Justin Bannan (calf) returned to practice on a limited basis, while Ryan Harris continues to work as a backup tackle. According to Andrew Mason's report, Harris isn't considered to be competing for a starting job.
Starter Eric Decker suffered a groin strain Wednesday, while reserves Greg Orton and D'Andre Goodwin each hurt an ankle.
Denver is now back to the 90-man roster limit for the first time since camp began. WR Eric Page and CB Coryell Judie had failed their team physicals a week ago and were subsequently released, and a hamstring injury to second-year safety Quinton Carter had prompted the signing of ex-Buff Kendrick Perkins on Saturday.
Brian Dawkins visited Dove Valley on Sunday to talk with Rahim Moore, among others. He told him:
Rahim, you’re not a scary guy. You like to hit, but sometimes, you've got to know when to make the big hit.
It’s sage advice. If there’s anyone who knows about creating intimidation, it was ‘Wolverine’. With Quinton Carter’s hamstring injury holding him out, Moore has an excellent opportunity to up his game and nail down one of the safety slots. It’s nice to see Rahim coming back into his own. He was tossed into the fire too quickly last year, and it shook his confidence. The team did a nice job of helping him rebuild it in the offseason.
Mitch Unrein was characterized by Neil Hornsby of Pro Football Focus as getting more and more snaps and moving up in the rotation by the quality of his play. Unrein has apparently been putting an ‘Eaton beatin’ on the players they put in front of him. I love seeing a guy come from a humble start in the league and develop the way Mitch seems to be doing. Unrein’s another lunchpail, bluecollar guy who can improve your DT rotation.
Of training camp performance evaluations, Denver's new defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio has said,
Really...right now you can't put too much stock in the depth chart.
Offense or defense, he’s right. You can’t write a camp update without talking about how the players are doing, but in the first week of camp, it’s good to remember that many of the updates are describing what will not be permanent moves.
There’s a long way to go, and the team is going to try plenty of different looks; several won’t mean much over time. Some guys are getting looked at for positions that they will take over as the preseason unwinds, but many of the changes are just ways of exploring options. What’s more important right now is watching to see what the players have as their strengths and weaknesses when going up against each other, to decide who fits where. Next Thursday, the players will get to show how far they’ve come in Chicago against the Bears, who have improved their team since the 2011 season.
Good Morning, Broncos fans! Healthy players got the day off yesterday (those nursing injuries had to come in for treatment) and return to practice this
afternoon morning. Camp only began last Thursday, but Saturday already brings the team's annual scrimmage at SAF@MH, and the team heads to Chicago next Wednesday, and will open their preseason against the Bears a night later.
Roster decisions are still about four weeks away though, as first cuts (down to 80 from 90) don't arrive until August 28. So players still have plenty of time to prove their worth.
So far, rookies Brock Osweiler and Danny Trevathan have stood out to both Andrew Mason and Jeff Legwold. Mason has also been impressed by Mitch Unrein, but he says Caleb Hanie and Nate Irving have struggled, while Matt Willis may be relegated to trying to make the team primarly as a kick returner. Legwold metes praise out to rookies Derek Wolfe and Ronnie Hillman, and he says guards Austin Wuebbels and Wayne Tribue each appear to have a chance to stick around.
Updated 9:44am ET
The differing suspension lengths and seemingly inconsistent handling of subsequent appeals had caught our attention. Psychiatrist claims that individuals who lack a clinical need for ADHD meds have nothing to gain by taking them, only confirmed our suspicions.
Today, yet another player was suspended four games for PED use and proclaimed his innocence via the ADHD excuse. Giants safety Tyler Sash says he's been taking Adderall under a doctor's care, and claims it was that medication that tripped up his PED test.
Reports Mike Klis:
The guarantee in the first three years of a proposed contract extension was a primary hang up Ryan Clady and and his negotiating team had with the Broncos’ five-year, $50 million offer, according to an NFL source.
Obviously, we're not at all surprised that the issue with these stalled negotiations was the guaranteed portion of Denver's contract offer. After all, that's all that ever really matters in the NFL - except to the agents, who want glittery total and average annual values with which to bedazzle their own resumes.
It cannot ever be stated enough - always look at the guaranteed money and how it's distributed, and you have the real value of an NFL contract. Everything beyond that tends to amount to an annual option held exclusively by the team.
Let's re-examine a pair of notable Denver deals to explain:
Friends, Coloradans, non-Coloradans, ninnies, lend me your eyes. I finally made some time to write about football, and I also feel semi-motivated to do so, so I decided to throw a couple thousand words at you, like we were on a date. I’m springing for McDonald’s, going all Andrew “Dice” Clay with it. I know what you’re thinking – yes, that does make you the heavyset woman in this deal. Yum – Big Mac.
Since training camp has begun, it seems appropriate to start talking about current events. This was supposed to be the year I went to Dove Valley for a few days to see it for myself, but with changing jobs a month ago, that wasn’t in the cards. Next year, I guess.
Anyway, I was watching NFLN the other day, and they seem to be featuring Heath Evans in a lot of their programming lately. I can’t really figure out why – all this dude talks about is what it’s like to play for Sean Payton and Bill Belichick. It seems like that’s the extent of his available insight. While I respect both coaches, I think there’s a lot more to football than the way they do things.