Kuper must add center to resume Lard

Good Morning, Broncos fans! Clearly, the team wasn't going to clear Chris Kuper for action until his contract situation was settled, else they risk paying him his original $4.5M salary in the case of a physical setback.

That's the likeliest explanation for Kuper's removal from the PUP list within hours (how convenient) of the announcement that he'd taken a pay cut all the way down to his $1.05M injury settlement figure.

Although that amount is guaranteed, there's no assurance that Kuper will make the final 53-man roster. He'll have to show he's actually healthy, and now that he's a backup, he has to also evince some versatility.

To that end, the eighth-year guard snapped to Peyton Manning in pre-practice warmups on Tuesday.

According to Kuper, his career at center spans three snaps during his junior season at North Dakota, and that's it.

With Ryan Lilja, C.J. Davis, Quentin Saulsberry, Philip Blake, Steve Vallos, and more recently, Manny Ramirez, having all had experience at both guard and center, the competition may actually be pretty stiff for Kuper, although we're guessing he ultimately sticks.

Broncos News

Videos: Highlights and sounds from Tuesday's practice; John Fox speaks afterward, and Chris Hall reports for BTV.

Fox loves Malik Jackson's size, improving technique, and athleticism, while Jack Del Rio says Jackson "really stood out" last Thursday in San Francisco.

C.J. Anderson says he picked up a stronger work ethic after a lackluster junior season at Cal; his practice workload is apparently increasing.

WR Lamaar Thomas left practice with a possible concussion, while TE Jacob Tamme was back participating in team drills.

Eric & Jessie premieres on September 29. Cue up the DVRs!

Broncos Analysis

Wes Welker, Duke Ihenacho, and Anderson continue to stand out in practice.

Jeff Legwold recaps the rookies' play from the opener and says it's an ironclad lock that Ronnie Hillman and Montee Ball split carries this season, just like he was certain the team would use lots of 21 personnel in 2012.

As for Legwold's handwringing over Denver's 2013 dead money, it's completely misplaced. Not only do the Broncos have a ton of cap room (more than $14.5M according to Spotrac), but their dead money (nearly $8.5M) is confined to 2013, and they have less than $700K in dead money on the 2014 cap. John Elway & Co. continue to manage the cap well, as much as I criticize the contracts of Matt Prater (who isn't that good, and is overpaid) and Britton Colquitt (who is really good, but overpaid).

Mark Kiszla thinks 26-year-old Ryan Clady needs a ring to boost his HOF case. Oh my.

News

Chargers WR Malcom Floyd is expected to miss the rest of the preseason; Raiders LT Jared Veldheer continues to be hampered by his left triceps, on which he had a second MRI on Tuesday.

Washington lost rookie safety Phillip Thomas for the season with a torn foot ligament; Indy added LB Monte Simmons and DB Johnny Adams; Houston G Wade Smith had his knee scoped; Philly acquired WR Jeff Maehl from Houston in exchange for G Nate Menkin.

Analysis

Over at PFF, a rundown of the Chiefs roster, grades for 2013 second-rounders from Week 1, some poor run-blocking grades for Virgil Green and Jake O'Connell, and their best single-game performances by rush linebackers, topped by Von Miller's gargantuan effort at New England last season. Von also makes the list for his 2012 games versus San Diego and at Carolina.

Chase Stuart sums up the biggest preseason injuries to offensive players around the league by checking in with team-centric writers including one from IAOFM. Hey, that's me!

Yet another one of those "Jay Cutler will finally be all kinds of awesome with the Bears' new OC" columns.

Miscellany

Here's a fine example of why we all need to be cautious when assuming that ex-athletes who are now analysts know what they're talking about. (But he played the game and has ringzzz ZOMG!)

A trio of sports-related incidents have provided a stark reminder that we're not post-racial here in America.

Doug is IAOFM’s resident newsman and spelling czar. Follow him on Twitter @IAOFM

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