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  • Broncos to face tough decisions when cutting secondary

    I haven't seen this article from the Post posted yet, so I thought I would. Not a lot that Broncos fans who pay close attention don't already know, but interesting take none the less by Legwold.
    Champ Bailey, Tracy Porter, Mike Adams and Rahim Moore have lined up as starters thus far. Drayton Florence is versatile, experienced and plays both in the slot and on the outside while providing a sure tackler in run defense.

    Chris Harris is tough and competes on every snap. The coaches love him, and he plays on several special teams units. That's already six, right there: four cornerbacks and two safeties.

    Quinton Carter was lining up as a starter at safety before having arthroscopic knee surgery, but the Broncos have consistently said they expected him to be ready by the regular-season opener or close to that. That's seven.

    That means players like Jim Leonhard, Syd'Quan Thompson, David Bruton, Rafael Bush and rookie Omar Bolden could be battling for two or three spots.
    I think the situation is tighter than Jeff Legwold is saying here.

    First of all, he concludes that the Broncos may go with more than the 9 DBs they had last season:
    So, it's clear that unless they are willing to cut loose players who have played a prominent role on either special teams or in the defense so far in training camp, the Broncos will have to open the season with more than the nine defensive backs they opened with in 2011.
    He thinks this because Syd'Quan Thompson "looks like he will be the leading option at punt returner." They can find someone else to return punts. Remember that one year they even had Champ Bailey back there returning punts for a time.

    If they keep 10 or 11 DBs that would force them to make serious sacrifices elsewhere. For instance RB. They would like to keep at least 4, one more than last year.

    McGahee, Hillman and Lance Ball are locks. That means if they go with 10 or 11 DBs they might have to cut Omon, Johnson AND Knowshon. That 4th RB might be more valuable than the 10th DB.

    Legwold suggests that they might go with only 2 QBs, but that even if true, that extra roster spot would already be used up keeping 4 RBs.

    Unless they want to keep one fewer DL, OL or LB (unlikely) they are going to have to give up someone in the secondary and only keep 9 DBs.

    And Leonhard isn't even going to be able to participate in the pre-season so unless he remains unable to come off the PUP, they are going to keep him based on his veteran experience.

    So, that probably means Bush, Bruton and Thompson will have to go and they find another punt-returner.

    Meanwhile, having only a rookie QB as your sole backup won't please Fox, who loves veterans and doesn't like to ever rely on rookies in key roles. That means Caleb Hanie is likely to make the team even though he doesn't appear (to me at any rate) to be any better than Weber or Osweiler right now.

    I'd cut Hanie, put Weber on the PS, and go with Osweiler as the backup. But, I'm not the head coach!

    But, if Hanie makes the team that means 3 QBs and yet another cut somewhere else. LB might be a place they could cut, IF they decided to get rid of DJ. But, they don't know how much Keith Brooking has left and whether Nate Irving is really going to be an adequate replacement.

    The fact that they haven't cut DJ yet and more significantly didn't sign a veteran replacement at WLB during the winter probably means they are going to keep him. Their depth at LB is very weak as is, even with the addition of Brooking.

    Your thoughts?
    Last edited by Cugel; 08-14-2012, 12:05 PM.
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  • #2
    Lance Ball is hardly a "lock"

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    • #3
      Originally posted by OrangeandBluBlood View Post
      Lance Ball is hardly a "lock"
      According to the sports radio guys covering training camp he is. He's also listed #2 on the depth chart for whatever that's worth.

      Personally, I'd rather see Omon. But I don't get a vote. Ball plays on several special teams and is a valuable contributor. Knowshon doesn't. That's possibly going to be fatal for Knowshon's chances to make the team.
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      • #4
        Originally posted by OrangeandBluBlood View Post
        Lance Ball is hardly a "lock"
        Well, he's a reserve RB. One the coaches love, and one that plays on every ST unit.

        Is Knowshon gonna play ST? Will they cut Ball to put JJ on ST?

        Ball's making the team.
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        Hooray, beer!

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        • #5
          Lance Ball making the team over Knkwshon would be like Tracy Porter making the team over Bailey, in terms of talent differential.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by CoryWinget81 View Post
            Well, he's a reserve RB. One the coaches love, and one that plays on every ST unit.

            Is Knowshon gonna play ST? Will they cut Ball to put JJ on ST?

            Ball's making the team.
            Not only that, but can't you guys see how the signing of Brooking and Leonhard directly hurts Knowshon's chances of making the team?

            Neither Brooking nor Leonhard can play on ST. Their addition means that the Broncos must cut elsewhere: probably Bush, and Thompson. David "Bruton plays on a variety of special teams and has consistently been in the safety rotation with the second-team defense."

            Yet it looks like either Bruton or Leonhard will have to go unless the Broncos keep 10 DBs.

            This would put enormous pressure on the team to add a special teams player elsewhere. The logical place is RB where Lance Ball, Omon and Johnson all can play on several different special teams. But, Knowshon doesn't.

            One possible solution is to go with 9 DBs, including Leonhard and go with 4 RBs including using both Ball and Johnson/Omon on Special Teams, while cutting Hanie and Knowshon, and putting Adam Weber on the PS.

            If they kept Knowshon, they might have to use Hillman on STs, which is hardly ideal when he's coming off injury and is the #2 back in all probability.
            Last edited by Cugel; 08-14-2012, 12:29 PM.
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            • #7
              Originally posted by OrangeandBluBlood View Post
              Lance Ball is hardly a "lock"

              Until Omon starts playing as a starter on Special teams he is.
              So far:
              FA- Melvin Gordon. Brandon Scherff
              1. Kenneth Murray LB; 2. Shenault WR; 2B. Biadazz Center, 3. OT

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Papa-pwn View Post
                Lance Ball making the team over Knkwshon would be like Tracy Porter making the team over Bailey, in terms of talent differential.
                First of all that's not at all apparent from watching them. Knowshon looked good, but not really better than Ball, Omon or Johnson for that matter.

                And I've already explained that special teams considerations are key. You can't just look at who you think might be better coming out of the backfield to catch a short pass!

                Finally, Champ Bailey is a Hall of Fame CB. Porter is a decent/good starting #2 CB. That is VASTLY greater than the value difference between Knowshon and Ball (if there is any).
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                • #9
                  I agree with OP on how to save a spot ....as long as Os continues to show well, leave him as a backup, cut Hanie, n put Weber on PS...

                  I wanna keep Rafeal Bush ...he's a very useful safety who's fast n has good man coverage skills

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                  • #10
                    Any trade interest? We traded Vaughn, maybe see if there's any takers on any of the other DB's.

                    I'd cut Hanie to make room. I'd like to see Moreno in this offense, he is dangerous as a receiver out of the backfield.

                    Lots of tough decisions. It's a good problem to have.

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                    • #11
                      half jokingly, keep one QB back up. The season will be over anyway if PM goes down.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Papa-pwn View Post
                        Lance Ball making the team over Knkwshon would be like Tracy Porter making the team over Bailey, in terms of talent differential.
                        Were you and Knowshon dorm room buddies in college or something? I don't understand the ridiculous praise for the guy. Ball has looked better than KM in camp.. sorry to tell you, but he has. If you were evaluating Rbs purely on what they've done in camp, and not where they were drafted, Moreno doesn't make this team. It's that simple.

                        I watched the guy fall to the ground untouched today. He was the only RB to do that.

                        To the OP, I agree that they should cut Hanie and make Brock the #2, which would open up another spot. Maybe a team will have a rash of injuries in their secondary, and might come calling with a possible trade for one of our dbs too. Who knows... I'd like to keep as many Cbs as possible though if they can play, especially the young talented ones.
                        Last edited by BluenOrnge4Life; 08-14-2012, 01:53 PM.
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                        @BlueNOrangeFTW

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by BluenOrnge4Life View Post
                          Were you and Knowshon dorm room buddies in college or something? I don't understand the ridiculous praise for the guy. Ball has looked better than KM in camp.. sorry to tell you, but he has. If you were evaluating Rbs purely on what they've done in camp, and not where they were drafted, Moreno doesn't make this team. It's that simple.

                          I watched the guy fall to the ground untouched today. He was the only RB to do that.

                          To the OP, I agree that they should cut Hanie and make Brock the #2, which would open up another spot. Maybe a team will have a rash of injuries in their secondary, and might come calling with a possible trade for one of our dbs too. Who knows... I'd like to keep as many Cbs as possible though if they can play, especially the young talented ones.



                          I 100% disagree with this. I didnt go to camp today, but I have been to a bunch this year and not once did I ever think ball looked better than moreno. And I report my camps with as little bias as possible. Do you think elway or fox care where he was drafted? They dont. It has no bearing. This is a very similar system to what knowshon played in college. He is here because that is they type of player he is. A system player, and we have that system now. He is here because he is a better RB than ball and JJ....He has always been ahead of then on the depth chart every season. But then he gets injured, like he does, every season. And that is why this is his last chance.
                          So far:
                          FA- Melvin Gordon. Brandon Scherff
                          1. Kenneth Murray LB; 2. Shenault WR; 2B. Biadazz Center, 3. OT

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by underrated29 View Post
                            I 100% disagree with this. I didnt go to camp today, but I have been to a bunch this year and not once did I ever think ball looked better than moreno. And I report my camps with as little bias as possible. Do you think elway or fox care where he was drafted? They dont. It has no bearing. This is a very similar system to what knowshon played in college. He is here because that is they type of player he is. A system player, and we have that system now. He is here because he is a better RB than ball and JJ....He has always been ahead of then on the depth chart every season. But then he gets injured, like he does, every season. And that is why this is his last chance.
                            Whatever dude I've gone to camp several times this year and I've seen them the last two days. Nobody who isn't a Knowshon Moreno Homer, and has been to camp, will tell you with a straight face that he's been the #2 RB on the roster.

                            You and Papa-Pwn are pretty much the lone - i'll defend KM no matter what - supporters on this board these days, so it doesn't surprise me that you'd say that.

                            If anyone actually thinks that KM is #2 based on performance in camp, then you can read through the ton of reports from the guys who blog about camp.

                            It's laughable to say that. He's looked good at times, but other backs have looked better.

                            The lone chance he has of making this roster is him as a receiver out of the backfield, not because he's better at running between the tackles than the other guys he's in competition with.
                            Last edited by BluenOrnge4Life; 08-14-2012, 02:57 PM.
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                            @BlueNOrangeFTW

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                            • #15
                              I'd say Champ, Porter, Harris, Florence, Moore, Carter, Adams, Bolden are locks.

                              So 2, maybe 3 other spots.

                              Also, i'd just roll with Peyton/Brock at QB, so we can add an extra roster spot elsewhere. And i feel DL is going to be MUCH tougher on cuts.

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