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  • Change of Pace: Torain's Future?

    On the Train to Recovery

    By Gray Caldwell
    DenverBroncos.com

    ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Ryan Torain's rookie campaign didn't unfold exactly how he envisioned it.

    Injuries postponed the start to his season and ended it prematurely, and in between he started just one game. But in that one start, he showed flashes of why the team selected him in the fourth round of the 2008 NFL Draft.

    Against the Cleveland Browns on Thursday Night Football, Torain averaged almost six yards a carry. He ripped off four runs of seven yards or more -- including a 19-yarder -- and most importantly, he got into the end zone.

    "My first game starting was definitely a confidence builder," Torain said, noting that it showed him he can produce in the league.

    He had 12 rushes for 68 yards -- a 5.7 yard-per-carry average -- in the first half. In the second quarter, he had runs of seven, seven and nine yards on three consecutive plays, then after a passing play he picked up six more yards, but suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee on the play, which ended his season.

    But the injuries didn't get Torain down. He stuck around Dove Valley for most of the offseason, working toward rehabbing his knee in time to participate as the team prepares for the 2009 campaign.

    He is still continuing his rehab as the team finishes up offseason conditioning, but he participated in the team's final minicamp, so there has certainly been progress.

    "I'm just working on getting better, working towards 100 percent and to a point where I can help the team," Torain said.

    Torain is one of only two carryovers from last season's Broncos backfield to make the transition to Head Coach Josh McDaniels' offense, along with Peyton Hillis.

    Torain said he's excited for the new challenge of proving himself to a new coaching staff.

    "It's a great feeling," he said. "It shows that you did a little bit last year to catch their interest, and you've just got to keep doing it this year."

    The backfield has plenty of occupants, including Correll Buckhalter, Hillis, LaMont Jordan, first-round draft pick Knowshon Moreno and Darius Walker.

    Torain said he knows that each of the backs should expect to contribute at a moment's notice.

    "Whenever Coach calls on your number, just be ready," he said. "You've all got to be versatile and do everything Coach asks of you."

    For now, the second-year running back is continuing to work to get back to 100 percent and learn a new offense. He said learning a new system is "tough," but it's all about dedication.

    Through it all, Torain has kept one thing in mind:

    "All the hard work, it will pay off once I get back to 100 percent on the field."



    I wanted to spend some time discussing other players on the team for a change. What do you guys think about Torains fit on the new look Bronco's. He has shown a good work ethic, a good attitude in light of difficult circumstances, now the Bronco's have drafted "the future" running back and he still seems to be saying the right things.

    His only game, he really showed a flash of starting NFL RB ability although his time playing was too short to declare anything definatively. He is also close in my mind to being declared injury prone - - both his rookie injuries werent his fault they were kind of freak occurances that could have happened to anyone (but seem to keep happening to him). I think the RB depth chart will look like this to me:

    1) Knowshon Moreno - RB
    2) Peyton Hillis - RB/FB
    3a) Correl Buckhalter - RB
    3b) Ryan Torain - RB
    3c) Lamont Jordan - RB

    My rationale is that Knowshon was drafted too high and based on his college career is too talented not to start. Since we know his running ability is explosive, the only question will be his ability to block, which so far seem to be adequate. Peyton Hillis is a solid #2 and a case could be made that he could start. But I think his versatility is going to allow him to be a FB and a dangerous weapon out of the backfield. Buckhalter and Jordan are journeymen, solid backs but not gamebreakers. Torain showed he had starting potential, but he has been rehabbing while the other guys on the list have been playing football so he is going to need to earn a spot back up the depth chart.
    Remember: If you dont feed the trolls - they will go away! Neither logic nor a compelling argument will make a difference.

  • #2
    good post

    i like torain a lot from what ive seen and i hope eventually that him, hillis, and moreno can form a three man rotation kinda like what the giants had last year

    as for buckhalter and jordan im not sure what their roles will be this season
    "Its not the size of the dog in the fight, its the size of the fight in the dog" - Coach Doug Kinney

    "Matt Stafford will be a bust"
    July 18 2009

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    • #3
      Nice post. If he can stay healthy it would be a sight to behold with Moreno, Hillis, and Torain in the backfield.

      Comment


      • #4
        I would love to see Torain as a healthy backup to Moreno. He's got a level head on his shoulders, and his style is very "grind it out." Both of these RBs have some Terrell Davis qualities to them, which would be awesome in the backfield.

        Throw in Hillis and that is one mean RB corps.
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        Supporting McD since 2009.

        Adopted Bronco....Daniel Graham!

        Adopted by Chillez! :salute!:

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        • #5
          Originally posted by RodSmithRules View Post
          I would love to see Torain as a healthy backup to Moreno. He's got a level head on his shoulders, and his style is very "grind it out." Both of these RBs have some Terrell Davis qualities to them, which would be awesome in the backfield.

          Throw in Hillis and that is one mean RB corps.
          What do you think will be the role of Jordan/Buckhalter? Where do they fit in?
          Remember: If you dont feed the trolls - they will go away! Neither logic nor a compelling argument will make a difference.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Pratama View Post
            What do you think will be the role of Jordan/Buckhalter? Where do they fit in?
            My enthusiasm that Torain will even be a second stringer isn't really based on fact. I just want him to succeed.

            That being said, where do Jordan and Buckhalter fit in? I could see them coming in on some short yardage plays. Then again, Hillis is the proverbial wrecking ball. So it's hard to foresee where these two fit in.

            Realistically, one of those two (probably Jordan) will be the second RB on the depth chart. This could be one of the more interesting battles come TC. Moreno may not even be the starter.

            This will be a fun competition to follow.
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            Supporting McD since 2009.

            Adopted Bronco....Daniel Graham!

            Adopted by Chillez! :salute!:

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            • #7
              Originally posted by RodSmithRules View Post
              My enthusiasm that Torain will even be a second stringer isn't really based on fact. I just want him to succeed.

              That being said, where do Jordan and Buckhalter fit in? I could see them coming in on some short yardage plays. Then again, Hillis is the proverbial wrecking ball. So it's hard to foresee where these two fit in.

              Realistically, one of those two (probably Jordan) will be the second RB on the depth chart. This could be one of the more interesting battles come TC. Moreno may not even be the starter.

              This will be a fun competition to follow.
              Thats one thing I am really looking forward to and I think makes this year a little bit more exciting because so much is unknown. EVERYONE at every position is going to be fighting for their spot (well almost everyone I think Dawkins and Champ are a lock), this will end up being one of the more competitive training camps. There will probably be a lot of scuffles. As long as the competition stays positive, its going to make everyone on the team better.
              Remember: If you dont feed the trolls - they will go away! Neither logic nor a compelling argument will make a difference.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Pratama View Post
                What do you think will be the role of Jordan/Buckhalter? Where do they fit in?
                If Torain is healthy by the end of TC I don't think both Jordan and Buckhalter make the team. If they carry 4 RB/FBs I think it would be Hillis, Moreno, Torain, and Buckhalter. It's possible they keep 5 and then Jordan would also make it. I think Hillis will be the goal line/short yardage back a lot of the time so that makes Jordan a little less needed. This is the best group of RBs we have had in Denver for a long long time. As far as injuries go, using Torain as a backup to Moreno with Hillis thrown in from time to time should keep Torain injury free. I agree with the posters who said a trio of Hillis, Moreno, and Torain would be a pretty awesome RB corp no matter who else we had. A lot of people are saying Torain will be cut early, I just don't see that happening. He has way to much potential and is too young to just be cut. The worst I see happening is the PUP list the first 6 weeks.
                Last edited by broncos SB2010; 06-19-2009, 11:21 AM.
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                • #9
                  [QUOTE=broncos SB2010;2788392]If Torain is healthy by the end of TC I don't think both Jordan and Buckhalter make the team. If they carry 4 RB/FBs I think it would be Hillis, Moreno, Torain, and Buckhalter. It's possible they keep 5 and then Jordan would also make it. As far as injuries go, using Torain as a backup to Moreno with Hillis thrown in from time to time should keep Torain injury free. I agree with the posters who said a trio of Hillis, Moreno, and Torain would be a pretty awesome RB corp no matter who else we had. A lot of people are saying Torain will be cut early, I just don't see that happening. He has way to much potential and is too young to just be cut. The worst I see happening is the PUP list the first 6 weeks./QUOTE]

                  Good point. One of the things I wonder is from Torain's perspective. Based on one game only, he showed he can play and maybe start in this league (again, I only have the one game to go on so dont flame me people). If Torain sees it that way, and if the Bronco's feel that they are good at the RB spot, maybe he will want to play were he has a chance to start. We'll have to see. He seems like the right attitude and so far, no one has been named the starter. The nice thing about this year is that there is no entitlement, if you want to start, you are going to have to earn it.
                  Remember: If you dont feed the trolls - they will go away! Neither logic nor a compelling argument will make a difference.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Pratama View Post
                    The nice thing about this year is that there is no entitlement, if you want to start, you are going to have to earn it.
                    Just like you mentioned before, this will create a healthy sense of competition. We have a solid crop of talent to work with. Say what you will about Buckhalter and Jordan, they are professionals with experience behind them. They will not concede anything if they have a chance to earn a spot.
                    sigpic

                    Supporting McD since 2009.

                    Adopted Bronco....Daniel Graham!

                    Adopted by Chillez! :salute!:

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Pratama View Post
                      On the Train to Recovery

                      By Gray Caldwell
                      DenverBroncos.com

                      ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Ryan Torain's rookie campaign didn't unfold exactly how he envisioned it.

                      Injuries postponed the start to his season and ended it prematurely, and in between he started just one game. But in that one start, he showed flashes of why the team selected him in the fourth round of the 2008 NFL Draft.

                      Against the Cleveland Browns on Thursday Night Football, Torain averaged almost six yards a carry. He ripped off four runs of seven yards or more -- including a 19-yarder -- and most importantly, he got into the end zone.

                      "My first game starting was definitely a confidence builder," Torain said, noting that it showed him he can produce in the league.

                      He had 12 rushes for 68 yards -- a 5.7 yard-per-carry average -- in the first half. In the second quarter, he had runs of seven, seven and nine yards on three consecutive plays, then after a passing play he picked up six more yards, but suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee on the play, which ended his season.

                      But the injuries didn't get Torain down. He stuck around Dove Valley for most of the offseason, working toward rehabbing his knee in time to participate as the team prepares for the 2009 campaign.

                      He is still continuing his rehab as the team finishes up offseason conditioning, but he participated in the team's final minicamp, so there has certainly been progress.

                      "I'm just working on getting better, working towards 100 percent and to a point where I can help the team," Torain said.

                      Torain is one of only two carryovers from last season's Broncos backfield to make the transition to Head Coach Josh McDaniels' offense, along with Peyton Hillis.

                      Torain said he's excited for the new challenge of proving himself to a new coaching staff.

                      "It's a great feeling," he said. "It shows that you did a little bit last year to catch their interest, and you've just got to keep doing it this year."

                      The backfield has plenty of occupants, including Correll Buckhalter, Hillis, LaMont Jordan, first-round draft pick Knowshon Moreno and Darius Walker.

                      Torain said he knows that each of the backs should expect to contribute at a moment's notice.

                      "Whenever Coach calls on your number, just be ready," he said. "You've all got to be versatile and do everything Coach asks of you."

                      For now, the second-year running back is continuing to work to get back to 100 percent and learn a new offense. He said learning a new system is "tough," but it's all about dedication.

                      Through it all, Torain has kept one thing in mind:

                      "All the hard work, it will pay off once I get back to 100 percent on the field."



                      I wanted to spend some time discussing other players on the team for a change. What do you guys think about Torains fit on the new look Bronco's. He has shown a good work ethic, a good attitude in light of difficult circumstances, now the Bronco's have drafted "the future" running back and he still seems to be saying the right things.

                      His only game, he really showed a flash of starting NFL RB ability although his time playing was too short to declare anything definatively. He is also close in my mind to being declared injury prone - - both his rookie injuries werent his fault they were kind of freak occurances that could have happened to anyone (but seem to keep happening to him). I think the RB depth chart will look like this to me:

                      1) Knowshon Moreno - RB
                      2) Peyton Hillis - RB/FB
                      3a) Correl Buckhalter - RB
                      3b) Ryan Torain - RB
                      3c) Lamont Jordan - RB

                      My rationale is that Knowshon was drafted too high and based on his college career is too talented not to start. Since we know his running ability is explosive, the only question will be his ability to block, which so far seem to be adequate. Peyton Hillis is a solid #2 and a case could be made that he could start. But I think his versatility is going to allow him to be a FB and a dangerous weapon out of the backfield. Buckhalter and Jordan are journeymen, solid backs but not gamebreakers. Torain showed he had starting potential, but he has been rehabbing while the other guys on the list have been playing football so he is going to need to earn a spot back up the depth chart.
                      Nice post. Torain's primary problem is staying healthy. IMO, if he can stay healthy, he should be able to beat out the FA scrubs - Jordan and Buckhalter, and be the primary backup to Moreno. Hillis IMO will emerge as the goal-line back and will be heavily involved in the passing game as well.
                      Hoping for a defensive-minded head coach and a return to the ZBS on offense. At the very least, no more cheaters for head coach.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        It's really hard to fit Torain into the offense. I believe Moreno is talented enough, and has the work-ethic, to become a full-time starter for our team. I do believe he can be like the RBs of old that actually stay in the line-up the entire game, and aren't taken out. In college he was skilled in all areas; running, blocking, and catching. That eliminates the need, really, for Jordan and Buckhalter.

                        I honestly believe it will just be Moreno and Hillis starting this year. Hillis as a FB, but also a short yardage and goal line back. If you look at Moreno's and Hillis' talents they really shadow Jordan and Buckhalter, and I wouldn't see the need to put either in the game, other than for their veteran experience.

                        I really like Torain, but we spent too much on Moreno. If Torain is healthy I think we should put him on showcase during the preseason and maybe trade him to a team in need of an RB. I was really hoping Torain would be our starter this year, before the draft. But, to see him snag the spot from Moreno would really be disappointing, considering how much Moreno cost.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I don't think we will use Torain. Moreno and Hillis are ahead of him. And Buckhalter is not a scrub, he was Westbrook's backup but still a very tough runner. His highlights: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hbg7dGWJpxk ... I don't know enough about LaMont Jordan, I haven't seen him play much. Torain might end in the PUP list, or get a roster spot as 3rd backup, I don't know, but I don't expect much from him.
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                          • #14
                            Since Peyton Hillis is a dual-threat, he saves us a roster spot at runningback.

                            So in essence, we'll have Moreno, Buckhalter, Jordan at tailback and Peyton Hillis at Fullback/Tailback.

                            There's no place for Torain anymore. He's as good as gone.

                            I was a supporter of Torain, but he's glass.


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                            FA Targets: DT Jason Jones, DT Pat Simms, S Reggie Smith, LB Dan Connor



                            :cool:

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Pratama View Post
                              What do you think will be the role of Jordan/Buckhalter? Where do they fit in?
                              I think for Jordan, maybe short yardage gain and maybe red zone. As far as Buckhalter maybe the same type of role, but really not to sure where he would fit.
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