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2009 Denver Broncos Depth Chart

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  • 2009 Denver Broncos Depth Chart

    What do you guys think about our Depth Chart for next season? I know we're leading the division and can make a playoff run, but it's never too early for the draftniks to start looking forward. Here's what I see.

    FA: Pick up a Safety, although MLB and D-line are also viable options.

    QB: Cutler, ?

    Here is our first question. Do we resign Ramsey or go to Free Agency? Clearly he isn't too great on the field, however he has a great relationship with Jay and is a good clipboard holder. A lot of people don't realize that the backup QB generally wears a headset and is involved with deconstructing how the O is doing and what they can do better.

    RB: Torain, T. Bell, Young, Draft Pick.

    Shanahan will give Torain his shot if he is healthy. If not, Tatum may be able to redeem himself and show what he can do. Hall will be gone, those fumbles will have put him in Shanny's Doghouse and his KR uses aren't very important anymore. Pope and Boyd are just placeholders in my opinion, but Selvin will still be back there in reserve. We know Shanahan loves Torain, but if he is not confident in his health, he will address RB earlier in the draft, but no matter what the Broncos will look for a diamond in the draft. If Selvin or Bell don't stick around, Anthony Alridge will be up here as well, if not he's on the practice squad. On the other hand, Anthony's return prowess and flat out speed may give him the nod over Bell or Selvin. Tatum's future rests in his own hands the rest of this season in my opinion.

    FB: Hillis, Pittman

    Hillis has shown us what he's got. Pittman is a seasoned Vet and will be back in a reserve role, knowing he can and will be used in whatever means needed and won't complain.

    WR: Marshall, Royal, Stokely, D. Jackson, C. Jackson

    Our starting Trio will be back and will be that much better. I believe Darrell Jackson will be back unless he thinks he can prove himself on another team and wants a release, in which case we will find ourselves taking another project WR that Shanahan loves for Depth later in the draft to be groomed as the future slot. Speaking of that, Shanahan really wanted Chad Jackson a few years ago, but he didn't pan out and now he has his chance. Just because he was snatched from Shanahan in the draft, I believe he will at least make it to training camp. And if we don't get another slot WR I believe when They may pull Royal into the Slot and put one of the Jacksons out wide if Stokely's concussion problem comes around again. With the ability to split our TEs out or put them in the slot, I can see us only carrying 5 WRs next year. Sorry Glen Martinez, but you're the odd man out.

    TE: Graham, Scheffler, N. Jackson

    This group seems oddly familiar. Graham is getting more and more involved in the passing game, especially in the red zone. It's nice having two capable bookend tackles to be able to handle the rush and Graham is reaping the benefits. Tony is a huge threat downfield and Jackson has shown he has some heart, I knew there was a reason Shanahan has kept him around, and not just because of his 49'er roots. Scheffler and Jackson give us the ability to pull a huge mismatch with their speed and size against LBers and Safeties. They can also be put in the slot or even split out if the package calls for it. One nicety of having these two quick receiving TEs is that we could come out with 2 or even 1 WR and as the Defense adjusts personal as needed, we can line up and run the ball at them, Play-action, or even motion one or both of them out and let the LBs and Safeties try to cover them in the open field.

    LT: Clady, Polumbus

    Ryan Clady has been a beast and is having nothing short of a pro-bowl rookie year. Look for him to get stronger and improve in the running game next year. Polumbus is the Colorado boy that Denver likes to bring in and with his size and long arms should be able to fill in nicely if he ever needs to. The Prototypical Denver Tackle.

    LG: Hamilton, Lichtensteiger

    While I am unsure whether or not Hamilton will stay at LG or move back to his original Center position, we don't have to ask that question yet because we don't have a hole at Center. Hamilton has always been solid, but especially this year has been having trouble holding up while pass-blocking. I don't know if it is because of the many inside stunts teams are using to try to get around Clady or if Ben is starting to decline. In either case, I don't see him going anywhere for at least a couple years.

    C: Wiegmann, Lichtensteiger

    Our last standing relic of the superbowl years, Tom Nalen will retire. He is getting old and has been oft injured. Similar to Lepsis, those years take a toll on the body, and he can't recover as quickly or fully as before. Wiegmann, even though he is old, he is still two years younger than Nalen, and his time as a journeyman skipping around the league means his body hasn't taken much of a toll due to less playing-time early in his career, will be back next year. I think this guy has some left in the tank while they groom Lichtensteiger to take over somewhere on the interior.

    RG: Kuper, Draft Pick

    Kuper, the big baby faced Alaskan has shown he has what it takes to play in this league. He is very young and will continue to hold down the right interior. Even though I have a draft pick listed as the immediate back-up, it is very possible that if Hamilton moves to center in the future, Kuper may slide back over to LG and let Kory take over at RG.

    RT: Harris, Polumbus

    Boy was Ryan Harris a surprise. Many people were writing him off as being too small, having back problems, having a down senior year, being a reach in the third round, etc...but he has bulked up a bit after his back surgery and moved over to RT and has performed near flawlessly, despite a terrible showing his first preseason game this year. Harris and Clady should be able to hold down the outside for years to come, while Polumbus will at least for now remain the versatile back-up.

    So for Offense the biggest question is our biggest question mark every year, Running Back. Who will carry the load? Will Torain be healthy? Will Bell prove he isn't a one-trick pony and redeem himself on his return visit and live up to his second-round potential? Will Shanahan find another diamond in undrafted free agency? Or will he finally pull the trigger on a powerful franchise running back EARLY in the draft? Only time will tell. Another question is our O-line. After Wiegmann is gone, we could very well have the same line for 4-6 years until Hamilton calls it quits and then no turnover for another 4-6 years after that. Having good chemistry is very important for a line, especially when running the stretch and knowing who is pulling off to the secondary and when. I see this young core of offensive players leading the Broncos to Greatness, from the trenches to the playmakers.

    LS: Leach

    Mike Who? Really? That's right, aside from maybe Elam, the most important key part of our Special teams unit for several years. Even then you can argue that without Leach, Elam wouldn't have had the chance for several of those kicks. He is flat out as clutch and reliable as can be for a longsnapper, that's all you can ask for. Oh yeah, he does a GREAT job getting to the running on punt team as well. Maybe he's much much more than we could ask for.

    P: Kern

    The Kid is having a great season, I don't have much more to add, so keep it up and continue to boot 'em long and high.

    K: Prater

    Another Offseason surprise. This kid needs to really get comfortable. He is nailing the long kicks, but having trouble with the chip shots and medium length ones. He has a boot and several people think with Shanahan's mentality, Prater may have the chance to tie or break the NFL record of 63 yards on a FG someday soon. His boot also transfers over to Kickoffs where he has seen his fair share of touchbacks.

    KR: Royal, Draft Pick

    Royal for the time being will continue to return kicks, while he will have one of our Draft Picks back deep with him. Whether it is a RB mentioned above or a talented DB I will get to later, we can't be sure, but then again, maybe Anthony Alridge will find himself back there alongside Royal?

    PR: Royal

    Eddie Royal does it all, and he will continue to be the team's premier punt returner, taking one to the house soon. Even if he is taken off of KR duty, I believe he will still be on PR so he can use his lightning fast cuts and acceleration to make plays.

    Special teams is looking good, but the return guys are usually a revolving door for most franchises, so we can't be sure what the future holds.

  • #2
    RE: Moss, Dumervil

    I'm calling it right now, Jarvis Moss is coming into his own and may usurp Elvis of his starting job. After 2 years Jarvis Moss is starting to make plays and is getting some pressure from the outside. Doom will still play very frequently and will be in at LE on passing downs.

    LE: Ekuban, Dumervil, Engleberger, Crowder

    Ekuban has shown what he can do when he is healthy, and if you've been paying attention Dumervil has been in at LE an awful lot lately while Moss comes in to play at RE. On the same token Moss has played some LE as well, and I can see these two flip-flopping sides often. Just as Moss is getting more playing time, Engleberger has been seeing less, even though he plays with a motor that never runs out. However, after 9 years in the league I could see him retiring very soon. He has been a blessing for his Defense these past few years, giving us one spot of consistent, albeit not spectacular play on the D-line. Ekuban is 33 also but has been playing fiercely and I think he gets re-signed. He also adds a DT option on 3rd and long. Crowder played well as a rookie but hasn't been able to crack much playing time this season, hopefully he shows them what he's got. If Engleberger does retire, look for them to draft a DE.

    LDT: Robertson, Powell, Draft Pick

    Without worrying about losing a draft pick for playing Robertson too much, hopefully his knee won't hold him back as he becomes a force in the middle with the big Powell backing him up. However, Robertson's knee hasn't been in playing shape since he came to the league, so the Broncos will look to add Depth and an eventual replacement through the draft.

    RDT: Thomas, Peterson

    Marcus Thomas will have his time to shine as he continues to improve and become a better player just as long as he stays out of trouble. He is quick and dexterous for his size and hopefully can create chaos in the backfield. Peterson plays with a fire and will provide good rotation when the DTs need a rest.

    MLB: Webster, Larsen, Koutovides

    The gaping hole in the D ever since Wilson was injured. I think Webster comes back and claims his starting spot, but not for long as Larsen looks to take over and stay back on the Defensive Side of the ball permanently. Niko played horribly and showed the rust he had when Nate first went down, and then Larsen got the surprise start over him and played with a calmness of an animal stalking its prey. He didn't over pursue, rarely missed his assignment and was always around the ball. That Calmness and Patience put him in the right places at the right times. Maybe Niko will be cut as he couldn't live up to his relatively large contract and perhaps he was nothing more than special teams numbers back in Seattle. Free Agency or the Draft are also possibilities here, especially if Webster or Niko are gone.

    WLB: Williams, Woodyard

    DJ has been nothing but spectacular as he has moved around the Defense, and Woodyard has played amazing when given the chance. Right now he is backing up DJ, but what will the future hold for him?

    SLB: Bailey, Woodyard, Winborn

    Bailey is injury prone and who is to say he will come back full health or even that he won't get injured again? I'm sure Woodyard will bulk up some and may even outplay Bailey if he is able to come back, showing that being the second leading tackler in the SEC does have its merit, while Winborn falls to third behind the quick younger, LB. If Bailey isn't able to come back I see Green and Holdman (if he is in camp) battling it out in Training camp for the last LB spot.

    CB: Bailey, Bly, Williams, Paymah, Bell

    The first two are givens, but what about the last three? Williams played great in the preseason and only looked bad in one regular season game and leapfrogged Foxworth and Paymah to be the nickelback, but now finds himself behind Paymah and Bell, who got the start in light of Champ's injury. I think the more athletic Jack Williams claims the nickel spot, Paymah sits in at fourth with a new contract and Josh Bell is left to work him way back up to the top.

    FS: FA, McCree

    I pray we could snag a decent starter with the lure of our large cap-space, but be warned not to overpay for him! Otogwe would be a great fit in this spot, as Denver tries to revamp what has been since Day 1 the worst Safety Duo in the NFL.

    SS: Draft Pick, Manuel

    Our number one Draft pick will fill in as a starting Safety, be it Moore, Rolle, Mays, or whomever, he will be fast, strong, and able to play football. If it weren't for their contracts, McCree and Manuel would both be gone, but then again, we need at least some resemblance from this year of players who know the system. Shanahan likes Manuel, but maybe McCree will still be cut and Lowry or Rodgers will stick around. My hope is Barret shows up at TC and earns a roster spot, playing out the season as a special teams ace.

    Our Defense will have to see some turnover, but in the end will hopefully be better. Only time will tell. If we can get one playmaker on the D-line or have one of our own players become a superstar and fix our Safeties, we'll be fine. I think the rookies have proven that the LB situation isn't as dire as we believed initially. If we don't get a safety via FA, I would not be angry at all if we went Safety in Rounds 1 and 2, or 1 and 3. For the second or third rounder, Peagues is an interesting candidate.

    If I counted correctly that is 53, but that didn't leave much room for an draft picks. And this team looks eerily similar to our current set-up. Could we really come out next year looking like an almost identical team, just with another year of experience and skill under our belts? It's possible. But I think we lose one or two of our LBers, 1 or 2 Safeties, anywhere from 1 to 3 RBs, and a DE from the players listed above.

    Safety should be our number one concern in the first round, after that it is a toss-up. Do we solidify the future of our O-line with Alex Mack or a G/C? Perhaps pull the gun on a stud RB? The problem with looking at the Front seven on D is that there is so much young talent that has not yet developed it may get buried in the depth chart. If Larsen is able to become a solid MLB in the NFL, what good would it do to draft one and never give him the chance? What about seeing Powell or Crowder buried in the depth chart next season? Like I said, only time will tell, my hope is we use this incredible cap-space and slurry of picks to trade up and get another second or third rounder. With our several 5ths and sixths, we will at least nab an extra 4th. We have no many young players doing well that it is hard to see where we should address draft picks because they have so much potential...let the season roll on and we will see what happens.

    Feedback and Comments welcome and expected. I want to know what other people think of my ramblings.


    • #3
      QB: Cutler, ?
      RB: Torain, Alridge, Young, Pittman
      FB: Hillis
      WR: Marshall, Royal, Stokely, Draft Pick, C. Jackson
      TE: Graham, Scheffler, N. Jackson, (possible draft pick)
      LT: Clady, Polumbus
      LG: Hamilton, Lichtensteiger
      C: Wiegmann, Draft Pick
      RG: Kuper, Lichtensteiger
      RT: Harris, Polumbus
      LS: Leach
      P: Kern
      K: Prater
      KR: Alridge
      PR: Royal
      RE: Moss, Dumervil
      LE: Ekuban, Dumervil, Crowder, Draft Pick
      LDT: Robertson, Powell, Draft Pick
      RDT: Thomas, Peterson, Draft Pick
      MLB: Draft Pick, Larsen
      WLB: Williams, Woodyard
      SLB: Bailey, Winborn, draft pick
      CB: Bailey, Bly, Williams, draft pick, Bell
      FS: Draft Pick, Free Agent
      SS: Draft Pick, Free Agent, Barrett


      • #4
        2009 53-man roster
        QB: Cutler, Hackney
        RB: D3, Bell, Boyd, Alridge
        FB: Hillis, Haynes or CFA/FA
        WR: Marshall, Royal, Stokley, C-Jackson<->D6
        TE: Scheffler, N-Jackson<->D7
        LT: Clady, Polumbus
        LG: Lichtensteiger, Eslinger
        C: Weigmann, Eslinger
        RG: Kuper, Pears or Erickson
        RT: Harris, Pears or Erickson

        P: Kern
        K: Prater
        LS: Leach

        SS: D1, Barrett
        FS: Lowry, Rodgers<->D5
        LCB: Champ, Jack, D4
        RCB: Paymah, Bell
        WLB: DJ, Woodyard
        MLB: Larsen, Niko
        SLB: Boss, Green<->D5
        LDE: D2, Crowder
        NT: Powell, Robertson
        DT: Thomas, Peterson<->Shaw
        RDE: Doom, Moss

        8-man P-Squad
        QB: D7
        RB: Torain
        C/G: CFA/FA
        ROL: Mitch Erickson or CFA/FA
        DL: Ryan McBean or CFA/FA
        LB: Kyle Shotwell, Terna Nande or CFA/FA
        DB: Travis Williams or CFA/FA


        • #5
          I'll continue to update this as time goes along and add more possible changes as well.


          • #6
            Webster, McCree, and D-Jax are on a 1-year contract...they're gone after the season


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



            • #7
              Originally posted by getlynched47 View Post
              Webster, McCree, and D-Jax are on a 1-year contract...they're gone after the season
              if webster leaves, who would you have at MLB?


              • #8
                Originally posted by Monz View Post
                if webster leaves, who would you have at MLB?
                either a 1st round draft pick or Spencer Larson if he plays well enough and shows improvement
                if man is 5 and jay cutler is 6 then that must make john elway 7


                • #9
                  Originally posted by getlynched47 View Post
                  Webster, McCree, and D-Jax are on a 1-year contract...they're gone after the season
                  That's why I think that D-Jax will probably be gone. I really think they will sign Ekuban to another deal even though he is older, he is still our best DE. But I am almost positive that they will re-sign Webster. McCree, I'm not sure. He was playing better than our other safeties, but at the same time, that isn't at a very high level, do we keep him just in case or get rid of him for room and gamble in FA and the Draft?