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  1. #1
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    MindField Goes To Camp/Part I Offense

    Well, this year I have been commuting to Denver from Colorado Springs, so I have not been going to as many practices as I would like, but I did go Friday. Here are my thoughts on the proceedings...

    Offense

    QB's

    Jay Cutler continues to flash some amazing ability, but that is still mixed in with some mistakes of inexperience. While he had his moments yesterday, he still was not awe-inspiring....maybe this is a good thing, because I have seen Brian Griese and Jake Plummer in the past have very good camp practices, only to have very average seasons. So maybe it's a good thing Cutler has not looked like a future Hall of Famer just yet. He is still a work in progress to say the least.

    The reports of Patrick Ramsey's demise here were greatly exaggerated, IMO. I saw some reports here from others that he was a bad choice as a backup QB for us, etc, etc. I disagree. Could it be he was just going through an adjustment period in his first TC practices with the Broncos? That was more likely the case. I think he will be just fine as a backup to Cutler.

    D Hackney will probably get a spot on the practice squad for QB insurance, but I actually prefer Preston Parsons. Parsons looks like he belongs in the NFL as a backup to me, and I wish he had more time available on the practice squad....but since I do not believe he does, it looks like we will be stuck with Hackney to fill that role.

    Prediction: Cutler and Ramsey get the (2) roster spots with Hackney taking a spot on the practice squad. Unfortunately for Parsons, he appears to be out of time.

    RB's

    Travis Henry and Kyle Johnson look firmly entrenched as the starters at RB. Cecil Sapp will probably end up the No. 2 RB due to his ability to play FB in a pinch and his ST's presence. That leaves Mike Bell as the No. 3, and looking squarely at some inactive games this year. Paul Smith did not practice due to a hammy pull, but he will probably get the No. 2 FB spot, again primarily because of his ST's contributions. Troy Flemming got some reps at FB, but
    it does not look like he will stick.

    The Broncos are obviously being careful with Henry as to not over-work him, and that left some nice plays for Mike Bell and Andre Hall to make. Hall in particular made some very nice plays coming out of the backfield as a receiver. I consider him to be a good candidate for the practice squad. Selvin Young was a kid I had high hopes for coming into camp, but he clearly has a long road ahead of him, not to mention the four other backs in camp, to get any kind of serious playing time with the Broncos.

    Prediction: The Broncos will keep (5) RB's with Henry, K Johnson, Sapp, M Bell and P Smith getting the nod. Andre Hall has a shot at the practice squad, and Selvin Young looks like he will be looking for another NFL address.

    WR's

    Maybe it is my optimism as a Bronco fan, but I was pleasantly suprised with several of the WR candidates, including D Hixon, D Kircus, B Clark and even Q Morgan. I had heard good things about the Martinez kid before I got to practice, and maybe I just missed him Friday, but he was nowhere to be seen.
    My personal disappointment was with Marquay McDaniel. He sat out the practice as well, and has not stepped up in Camp the way I had hoped he would.

    ...and now for the post-mortem, guys. Rod Smith. After watching him limp rather dramatically on the isidelines yesterday, I have a very hard time believing Rod Smith will ever play another down in the NFL. I can't imagine he will be ready in three weeks time to play against Cleveland. This means he will likely remain on the PUP list until week seven of the regular season, at which time he will either have to be ready to play, go on IR, or simply retire. I put the odds at least 50/50 that he won't even get that far and call it a career. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but I think Rod Smith is done.

    The local media here continues to rave about Brandon Stokley, but he did not practice Friday.

    Domenik Hixon, Brian Clark, David Kircus and Quincy Morgan all got alot of reps Friday with the first and second teams, and all are making serious runs at rosters spots. If you figure J Walker, B Marshall, B Stokely all have locked up roster spots, that leaves the rest of these players battling for what will likely be three spots assuming the Broncos keep six WR's. I have to believe Hixon will make it, and Kircus has been having an excellent camp as well, so I make them the front runners. Brian Clark has obviously matured with a year in the system and is a very impressive player physically, as he is just ripped to shreds. Quincy Morgan wsas the real suprise to me, as I figured him to be nothing but camp fodder, but to his credit, he is anything but that, and is fighting to make the team. All had their moments Friday and it is an interesting battle going on there.

    Prediction: The Broncos will keep (6) WR's with J Walker, B Stokely, B Marshall, D Kircus and D Hixon as the top five, and B Clark and Q Morgan fighting it out for the sixth spot. Rod Smith will either stay on the PUP until week seven or retire, and Martinez will have a look at the practice squad.

    TE's

    For all the 'RNJ' haters, let me just re-assure you all that Nate Jackson WILL make the team, probably at the expense of Stephen Alexander. Jackson is just too prominent on too many of the Special Teams units, that he is very likely to make the team yet again. He aslo ran witrh alot of the first and second team Offensive receiver sets yesterday, so the Broncos obviously like him. Stephen Alexander is probably the odd man out here, because unlike Jackson and Chad Mustard, he does not figure into a ST's role. Mustard is also a prominent in-line blocking presence, ala Dwayne Carswell, so I believe he will make it as well.

    Daniel Graham is the real deal and IMO will be quite the revelation for us as a TE. Absolutely a GREAT signing!

    We all know Mike Leach will make it as the long snapper, and Scheffler will be back soon....so...

    Prediction: Look for the Broncos to keep (5) TE's again this year with Graham, Scheffler, Mustard, Jackson and Leach all getting the call. Unfortunately for Stephen Alexander, he just lacks the versatility as a ST'er that backups need to keep their job. So, unless an un-expected injury buys him a spot, Alexander will likely be among the final cuts.

    O-Line

    I saw less of this unit yesterday than any other. For whatever reason, they always seemed to be on the far side of the complex from where I was standing, so I only caught glimpses of them. But here's what I noticed...

    Tom Nalen is still freaking amazing...dude just keeps on trucking. Look for another outstanding year for a guy who, IMO, should be a lock for Canton five years after he hangs it up.

    Chris Kuper and Erik Pears look like they are entrenched as the starters at RG and RT, respectively. Kuper in particular will be an uprade over Cooper Carlisle, IMO, and looks like a ten year vet. He just looks like an unusually mature kid and the Broncos O-Line will see the benefit of him starting. Word is, the Broncos really believed he could start last year, but since they had Carlisle signed for a year, there was no need to rush Kuper into service. Look for Kuper to be the starting RG for the next ten yrears or so.

    Lepsis looks like he is fully recovered. Myers is on alot of special teams and he can play three positions, so he will make it.

    I did not see too much of anyone else.

    Prediction: Look for the Broncos to once again go lean here and keep just (8) players, and use that spot to go deep somehwere else, ala WR or TE.
    Nalen, Hamilton, Kuper, Lepsis, Pears, Eslinger, Myers and rookie Ryan Harris make the team.

    Kickers:

    Yesterday was the Jason Elam show. He kicked several FG's in the 40 to 45 yard range, and looks like, well, Jason Elam.

    Todd Sauerbrun looks like he could hit a satellite if he wanted to.

    The only question here is if the Broncos keep (3) kickers, one, such as Paul Ernster to kickoff....I hope they don't.

    OK, while you digest that, I will move on to Defense in Part, II.

  2. #2
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    cp coming your way dude! thanks for the info for us guys not able to attend.

  3. #3
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    the broncos will probably keep holland for the o line

  4. #4
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    Thumbs up

    Very good report, IMO.

    A couple things: I believe Alexander will make it over Mustard because of his
    balance between blocking and receiving: not as good as Mustard or Graham as
    a blocker, and not as good a receiver as Scheffler and Jackson, but competent
    at both . . . probably the only one in the group that balanced, except possibly
    for Graham?

    On the OL, I believe Harris is headed for the PS, while Holland makes the active
    squad.

    Does that sound reasonable?

    -----

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by topscribe View Post
    Very good report, IMO.

    A couple things: I believe Alexander will make it over Mustard because of his
    balance between blocking and receiving: not as good as Mustard or Graham as
    a blocker, and not as good a receiver as Scheffler and Jackson, but competent
    at both . . . probably the only one in the group that balanced, except possibly
    for Graham?

    On the OL, I believe Harris is headed for the PS, while Holland makes the active
    squad.

    Does that sound reasonable?

    -----
    I disagree, if Harris went on the practice squad, he is susceptible to being snatched up by other teams, and we can't allow that at all.

    It would be foolish, no offense.


    150 lbs of pure steel and sex appeal.

    D.J. 55's Mock Draft:


    Denver Broncos General Manager

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lorcust View Post
    I disagree, if Harris went on the practice squad, he is susceptible to being snatched up by other teams, and we can't allow that at all.

    It would be foolish, no offense.
    You're right. Didn't think of that.

    Bet he wouldn't last through the first hour.

    -----

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by topscribe View Post
    Very good report, IMO.

    A couple things: I believe Alexander will make it over Mustard because of his
    balance between blocking and receiving: not as good as Mustard or Graham as
    a blocker, and not as good a receiver as Scheffler and Jackson, but competent
    at both . . . probably the only one in the group that balanced, except possibly
    for Graham?

    On the OL, I believe Harris is headed for the PS, while Holland makes the active
    squad.

    Does that sound reasonable?

    -----
    Everything up to the Harris to the PS part. It's much more likely that Harris will end up with a bum ankle, knee, or pinky toe and end up on the IR for the season. That or he'll make the team outright. No way does he last through 31 other teams on the Waiver Wire.

    For those that haven't had a chance to go to Broncos camp... Daniel Graham is a beast. He was pancaking folks on the Dline today.

    Dre Bly is a pretty kewl dude. He talks to the fans a lot. So does Nick Ferguson.

    At the beginning of practice today Nick Ferguson was talking to the crowd and welcoming us to the "Nick Ferguson" show. He said now let me hear it for your favorite Bronco! There were probably 100 people that said "ALRIGHT CHAMP!" Nick said wait a minute, didn't I say this was my show??? Pretty funny and he's been engaging with the fans like that all week.

    Impressive in camp thus far:

    Travis Henry
    Jarvis Moss
    Quincy Morgan
    Brandon Stokely (in limited work no less)
    Sam Adams
    The entire secondary (We'll keep 10 from this group! and we don't need no stinkin *****s! They can keep Greg Wesley!)
    Jay Cutler
    Tim Crowder
    I'm not a big OLine guy so I've not paid too close attention to them.

    Walker struggled to catch the ball today.
    Jarvis Moss beat Lepsis time after time.
    Dre Bly had a sweet pick (on Hackney) that he took to the house. Right before that he was chatting with a fan. He's a great addition to this team and if we get anything close to consistent pressure, we're going to have a pair of CB's with atleast 6 INT's each.
    Karl Paymah was making some good plays today and that's pretty much been the theme through out this camp. He's a great man-to-man corner. I'm a homer no doubt, but I'd argue with anybody that we not only have the best starting duo at CB, we have the deepest 4 at CB as well. Foxworth and Paymah could start on this team in a pinch and we'd be okay!
    Abdullah is listed at 6'2 and 210 but he looks much bigger. He's a fun guy to watch as he likes laying the wood. I think he had a pick on Cutler today but I could tell for sure as it was on the far side of the field. At any rate, the only other safety close to his size is Lynch.

    First time poster here so you bastards better appreciate!!! lol j/k

    Nice board!

  8. #8
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    Thumbs up Great first post, Iceman!!

    That was probably the best first post I've seen . . . even better than mine!

    I tried to give you a "first" CP, but I will have to wait for a fresh supply. (You'll
    learn what those are as you go along.)

    And you are right about Harris. See my previous post.

    -----

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by BRONCOS_OWN_U16 View Post
    the broncos will probably keep holland for the o line
    Up until yesterday afternoon I figured him to be cut... then we get news that the Broncos have extended his contract. I'm still scratching my head on that one b/c I really don't get it.

    Nails, Lepsis, Hamilton, Kuper, Pears, Harris, Myers, and Meadows (though he's sucked too)... we're hurting at Tackle, especially in the depth department. Harris isn't ready to log playing time and Meadows looks like crap out there. Then again, Lepsis has looked bad too. A little concerning but considering his injured knee, I think he'll be okay once the regular season rolls around.

    Eslinger will probably be on the PS again if he clears waivers. Kind of doubt he will clear them though. Too many teams that could use a versatile interior OL guy that is familiar with the zone blocking scheme. I imagine Kubiak would take him in Houston with the current state of his interior OLine.

    WR is the big head scratcher.

    Walker, Stokely, Marshall, Smith (if he returns), Morgan, and ??? probably Kircus. Hixon will probably stay on the team as long as Smith is out. Sucks for Brian Clark, I like that kid.

    Engleberger didn't look too good today. He's the most consistent vs the run but he doesn't offer much in terms of pass rush. If Crowder keeps up the good work he'll challenge him for substantial playing time.

    Moss and Elvis are the Nickel DEs. I like that package a lot (with the Dline). Elvis, Ekuban, Warren, and Moss. They want the speed inside but I wonder if Jimmy Kennedy wouldn't be a better fit instead of Warren. G-Money is a big boy and he can play, but he hasn't showed it this camp. Kennedy has penetrated the line a few times. Sam Adams is probably the most productive in that regard (suprisingly) but he wears down REAL FAST.

    Speaking of wearing down. Jarvis looks gassed after every single play. To his credit though he'll bring it strong when the ball is snapped regardless of whether he's tired or not. I just wonder how he'll do over a 16 game schedule and then the playoffs??? A fresh Jarvis Moss is a nightmare for any opposing OT & QB.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by !ceman View Post
    Jarvis Moss beat Lepsis time after time.
    This part is the creamy filling.


  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by topscribe View Post
    That was probably the best first post I've seen . . . even better than mine!

    I tried to give you a "first" CP, but I will have to wait for a fresh supply. (You'll
    learn what those are as you go along.)

    And you are right about Harris. See my previous post.

    -----

    Thanks, just trying to connect some of the people that don't have the opportunity to attend camp. I've been in 'them' shoes and it sucks depending on others accounts, but it's far better than nothing!

    Is this the same board as Broncomania? I was sitting next to a fella today that frequents the Broncomania board. I think he said his name was Broncosforever.

    If you're here Broncosforever it was good to sit next to someone that shared the same passion. Can't tell you how many times I've sat next to people that are looking for Jake Plummer, Courtney Brown, and Tatum Bell! I heard a gal talking about Alexander being out with a broken foot and all of the people around her said they couldn't wait for him to get back. When I mentioned that was Scheff they looked at me like I'd lost my mind and didn't know what I was talking about... Funny, I've watched several of these guys since High School and could tell you most of their college stats off the top of my head!

    Coach Hawkins (CU) was at camp today with his two young sons (I assume) perhaps a son and a friend. Anyhow, it was good to see him out and about and enjoying the Broncos camp. I also saw a couple AFA kids. I'm sure Troy is encouraging them to come out and watch the Broncos camps and to prepare for much of the same. I was never a Fisher Deberry 'hater' but I did get frustrated with the same ole same old. I'm very excited about Troy taking over.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hawgdriver View Post
    This part is the creamy filling.

    Yeah, but like anything in camp when you're playing each other there's a negative to it.

    When Champ or Dre get a pick 6 it's one of our QB's they're picking which is disheartening.

    When our defense stepped up and locked the offense down in goal line drills it was great for the defense... but then I thought about the Niners game last year and how we struggled to punch the ball in numerous times near the goal line.

    It's a double edged sword. Kind of weird cheering at camp. I like Mike Bell as well as the rest of our guys but find myself cheering when one of our guys put a lick on him. Javon caught a long TD pass yesterday and I was pumped... but it was on Champ. You get the jist...

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by !ceman View Post
    Thanks, just trying to connect some of the people that don't have the opportunity to attend camp. I've been in 'them' shoes and it sucks depending on others accounts, but it's far better than nothing!

    Is this the same board as Broncomania? I was sitting next to a fella today that frequents the Broncomania board. I think he said his name was Broncosforever.

    If you're here Broncosforever it was good to sit next to someone that shared the same passion. Can't tell you how many times I've sat next to people that are looking for Jake Plummer, Courtney Brown, and Tatum Bell! I heard a gal talking about Alexander being out with a broken foot and all of the people around her said they couldn't wait for him to get back. When I mentioned that was Scheff they looked at me like I'd lost my mind and didn't know what I was talking about... Funny, I've watched several of these guys since High School and could tell you most of their college stats off the top of my head!

    Coach Hawkins (CU) was at camp today with his two young sons (I assume) perhaps a son and a friend. Anyhow, it was good to see him out and about and enjoying the Broncos camp. I also saw a couple AFA kids. I'm sure Troy is encouraging them to come out and watch the Broncos camps and to prepare for much of the same. I was never a Fisher Deberry 'hater' but I did get frustrated with the same ole same old. I'm very excited about Troy taking over.
    Yes, this is the same board as Broncomania was.







    -----

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by !ceman View Post
    Thanks, just trying to connect some of the people that don't have the opportunity to attend camp. I've been in 'them' shoes and it sucks depending on others accounts, but it's far better than nothing!

    Is this the same board as Broncomania? I was sitting next to a fella today that frequents the Broncomania board. I think he said his name was Broncosforever.

    If you're here Broncosforever it was good to sit next to someone that shared the same passion. Can't tell you how many times I've sat next to people that are looking for Jake Plummer, Courtney Brown, and Tatum Bell! I heard a gal talking about Alexander being out with a broken foot and all of the people around her said they couldn't wait for him to get back. When I mentioned that was Scheff they looked at me like I'd lost my mind and didn't know what I was talking about... Funny, I've watched several of these guys since High School and could tell you most of their college stats off the top of my head!

    Coach Hawkins (CU) was at camp today with his two young sons (I assume) perhaps a son and a friend. Anyhow, it was good to see him out and about and enjoying the Broncos camp. I also saw a couple AFA kids. I'm sure Troy is encouraging them to come out and watch the Broncos camps and to prepare for much of the same. I was never a Fisher Deberry 'hater' but I did get frustrated with the same ole same old. I'm very excited about Troy taking over.
    Are you a zoomie, !ce?

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by !ceman View Post
    Yeah, but like anything in camp when you're playing each other there's a negative to it.

    When Champ or Dre get a pick 6 it's one of our QB's they're picking which is disheartening.

    When our defense stepped up and locked the offense down in goal line drills it was great for the defense... but then I thought about the Niners game last year and how we struggled to punch the ball in numerous times near the goal line.

    It's a double edged sword. Kind of weird cheering at camp. I like Mike Bell as well as the rest of our guys but find myself cheering when one of our guys put a lick on him. Javon caught a long TD pass yesterday and I was pumped... but it was on Champ. You get the jist...
    good point. The way I see it, Lepsis and Champ are known quantities, while Jarvis is a big ??. If he can get over on Lepsis, it sounds like he'll be just what we need this year.

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