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  1. #1
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    MindField Goes To Camp, Part II/Defense

    Overview:

    One of the most impressive things I saw at camp yesterday was the quality of the Coaching I saw from Jim Bates and Co. This guy will make a tremendous difference for our Defense, as will Bill Johnson as an assist D-Line Coach. To me, this is light years ahead of what I have witnessed in the past with Larry Coyer. I just can't wait to see what materializes on the field, because I think it is going to be a dramatic improvement for the Broncos Defense.

    D-Line

    The biggest improvement for our D-Line, at least initially, will come from the contribution of DT Sam Adams. I can't tell you how impressive he is. He is just HUGE. He is also the embodiment of veteran saavy, and is a man's man and a Pro's pro. He will be the starter with Gerard Warren at DT, and obviously has the respect of even the veteran players on the team. He is a guy you can tell just leads by example. His job in Bates Defense will be to clog things up in the middle, stuff the run and in general be a rock in the middle of the line. I think he will do this very well, and players like Gerard Warren and Marcus Thomas will be the beneficiaries.

    Ebeneezer Ekuban looked good and will be one starting DE, and strangely enough, John Engelberger is running with the first team as the other. There are certain players in Broncos history that for whatever reason, endeared themselves to the Broncos coaching staffs and got alot of playing time, even though their contributions on the filed never seemed to warrant the playing time they received. Jim Ryan was one of those, so was Steve Wilson, so is Nate Jackson now.....so is John Engelberger, IMO. I just don't get it...how he is a front runner over Kenard Lang is beyond me. I would not even give Engelberger a roster spot, and yet he appears to be in contention to be a starter.

    Go figure.

    Tim Crowder has been the most impressive rookie of all thus far, and will probably become a starter as soon as 2008 for the Broncos...at least that is how he has looked in practice....but then again, so did Mike Croel once upon a time. Crowder will still have to prove it come gametime, because he has had the tendency to disappear in games even at Texas, so I will still believe it when I see it from Crowder.

    Jarvis Moss is young and green and will have to make his mark this year as a designated pass-rusher as a rookie, similar to what we saw from Dumervil last year.

    Something tells me when the dust settles, Demetrin Veal will have a job and Jimmy Kennedy will not.

    Kenard Lang seems to be on the outside looking in, but I don't understand why. The Broncos 'body language' indicates he will be traded or released prior to the season. I would consider this a mistake.

    Alvin McKinley was not as prominent in the D-Line rotation as I would have expected.

    Prediction: The Broncos will keep at least (9) D-linemen and maybe ten...for now, I will call it Warren, Adams, Engelberger, Ekuban, Thomas, Veal, Moss, Crowder and Dumervil.


    LB's

    I have just one message for the Broncos coaching staff....GET FREAKIN' NATE WEBSTER ON THE FIELD!!!!!!!!!!!
    The guy is just a straight-up football player... he just makes plays whenever he plays. He is also the same size at 6'1"-230 as Eddie Moore was with Bates Dolphins, so he does fit that mold.

    With Williams and Gold as the starters, the battle for the other OLB position appeared to be between Warrick Holdman (before he got injured Thursday), DD Lewis and Webster.

    One of the bigger disappointments in camp for me was the lack of reps I saw Cameron Vaughn get....he spent alot of time standing around and just seemed to be an afterthought to the Broncos coaching staff.

    Prediction: The Broncos will keep (6) LB's at least, but with the uncertainty surrounding Holdman, I can only name DJ Williams, Gold, Webster, and Louis Green as locks....Holdman would be the fifth if he can come back....the other will depend on if Eddie Moore for example can return to camp after a minor knee procedure.

    DB's

    The Broncos really have to hope that Karl Paymah and Dominique Foxworth stay healthy, because they have no other depth at Corner. I am not sure Jeff Shoate or any of the others even belong in an NFL camp.

    With Lynch and Ferguson as the starters, Curome Cox and Hamza Abdullah are the most impressive young backups. Cox in particular could be the next Nick Ferguson if he continues to improve.

    Prediction: The Broncos keep (8) DB's, with Champ, Bly, Lynch, Ferguson, Paymah, Foxworth, Cox and Abdullah amking the cut.

    Well, that's it for now.

    Out.

  2. #2
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    Eddie Moore cleared waivers and was put on IR, so he isn't coming back.

    But very good analysis.


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  3. #3
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    I would have to think that Bates prefers Engelberger over Lang. Why??

    I have one additional comment:

    Adding Jim Bates will make up for the loss of Al Wilson's leadership. I am not as worried as I was before about the leadership vacuum. He'll be on the sidelines, and you can tell by his conduct in TC that he's forging a cohesive unit, accountable to each other.

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    I think you're missing a player.

    If I'm counting right, you only have a 52 player roster.

    And if you're right about Veal, I hope that the 53rd player is another DT to off-set the complete nothingness that Veal provides.

    Btw, how in the hell do you put Steve Watson in the same group of players "that really don't do much"? A group that should include the immortal Demetrin Veal.....
    Last edited by stnzed; 08-04-2007 at 03:13 PM.

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    Great post man, so you actually think Cox can fill Fergusons role when he leaves?

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    Thanks for the reports, and maybe I'll get to see you if I do get down there next year.

    Anyways, I think you'll continue to be impressed by Crowder. I know that Kaylore didn't think too much of him either, but that didn't stop him from being honest in his camp reports and reporting that overall he had been doing a good job.

    If Tim can be an anchor in the running game at LE, that's great - and if he offers occasional burst in the pass rush, that's great too. That's what I expect. I don't expect the 8.5-10+ sacks a year like Dumervil and Moss will be getting. Tim will just be a solid player for a long time. Nothing too flashy, but he'll get the job done.

    Thanks again.

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    Nothing i have read anywhere has said that veal will make the team. i have read that kaylore and Socal on burton that he has turned up the motor. veal IMO has been as invisible this year as cameron vaughan
    The fool who fancies he is full of wisdom
    While he sits by his hearth at home.
    Quickly finds when questioned by others .
    That he knows nothing at all.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Broncosinindy View Post
    Nothing i have read anywhere has said that veal will make the team. i have read that kaylore and Socal on burton that he has turned up the motor. veal IMO has been as invisible this year as cameron vaughan
    This is just not true. Veal was very much involved in yesterday's practices, and I would make him the favorite to beat out Burton...now Kennedy is another story, but so far, he has not been impressive.

    People have been trying to write Veal off for two years, and he just keeps making the team...and he adds a different dimension to the D-Line, quickness.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by stnzed View Post
    If I'm counting right, you only have a 52 player roster.

    And if you're right about Veal, I hope that the 53rd player is another DT to off-set the complete nothingness that Veal provides.

    Btw, how in the hell do you put Steve Watson in the same group of players "that really don't do much"? A group that should include the immortal Demetrin Veal.....

    Yeah, I don't know where they will keep an extra player...the 52 I list are the players I think will make it, but there is another spot to be addressed.

    ...oh, and BTW, it's Steve WILSON, the Cornerback that started in the late 80's, not Steve Watson the WR....I could never figure out how the hell Steve Wilson made the Broncos team....or started for that matter. I think he started SB XXIII against Washington after Louis Wright retired....you can see him (with S Tony Lilly) following Clark and Sanders into the end-zone in three or four different TD passes from Doug Williams.

    That SB still makes me sick after all these years...
    Last edited by MindField; 08-04-2007 at 04:24 PM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by rbk_bronco View Post
    Great post man, so you actually think Cox can fill Fergusons role when he leaves?
    I do...in fact, I would not be at all suprised if Cox and Abdullah are the starters in a couple years time.

  11. #11
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    I'm pulling for Kennedy and Burton

    Quote Originally Posted by MindField View Post
    This is just not true. Veal was very much involved in yesterday's practices, and I would make him the favorite to beat out Burton...now Kennedy is another story, but so far, he has not been impressive.

    People have been trying to write Veal off for two years, and he just keeps making the team...and he adds a different dimension to the D-Line, quickness.

    Which he makes for by being completely useless in a real game.

    If he makes the team again hopefully Bates is a freaking god and can get some kind of production out of him....By that I mean hopefully he can keep Veal from getting blown off the LOS clear past the LB's.

    If he makes it again I'm gonna laugh til I cry....Again!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dream View Post
    Thanks for the reports, and maybe I'll get to see you if I do get down there next year.

    Anyways, I think you'll continue to be impressed by Crowder. I know that Kaylore didn't think too much of him either, but that didn't stop him from being honest in his camp reports and reporting that overall he had been doing a good job.

    If Tim can be an anchor in the running game at LE, that's great - and if he offers occasional burst in the pass rush, that's great too. That's what I expect. I don't expect the 8.5-10+ sacks a year like Dumervil and Moss will be getting. Tim will just be a solid player for a long time. Nothing too flashy, but he'll get the job done.

    Thanks again.
    I hope you are right...after Tim Crowder was drafted, he became a Bronco and I became a hopeful fan of his. I hope he lines up as the starting LDE for the next decade or so. I like his physical size, I like his character, I like his work ethic...I just have not been thrilled at times with his production....but he is one player I am truly hopeful that I have been wrong about.

    If he can be a Greg Ellis-type in his prime sort of player, I will be thrilled.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by stnzed View Post
    Which he makes for by being completely useless in a real game.

    If he makes the team again hopefully Bates is a freaking god and can get some kind of production out of him....By that I mean hopefully he can keep Veal from getting blown off the LOS clear past the LB's.

    If he makes it again I'm gonna laugh til I cry....Again!
    I don't necessarily disagree, but you have to look at his competiton for the fourth DT spot...namely Kennedy and Burton. Burton is a short and squatty NT type of player, and Kennedy is a classic underachiever, worse than Gerard Warren's worst critics could mention.

    I just get the impression Veal will be the fourth DT when all is said and done, partially because he is under contract for the future. If the Broncos keep Adams and Kennedy, then half of their DT's have to be replaced in 2008. I think that will factor into the decision making process.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by MindField View Post
    I hope you are right...after Tim Crowder was drafted, he became a Bronco and I became a hopeful fan of his. I hope he lines up as the starting LDE for the next decade or so. I like his physical size, I like his character, I like his work ethic...I just have not been thrilled at times with his production....but he is one player I am truly hopeful that I have been wrong about.

    If he can be a Greg Ellis-type in his prime sort of player, I will be thrilled.
    Well, I've been saying Greg Ellis prior to his drafting and I think he'll be able to do that.

    A friend of mine on the Mane (not Kaylore or SoCal) was able to stand right next to the guy and he said, if God designed a defensive end (prototypical body) it'd be Crowder.

    Hopefully he can improve mentally and work on his snap anticipation and explosion off the line, if he can do that, it'll really help him, especially in the pass rush. As Bates mentioned, and guys like SoCal and Kaylore mentioned all week, his technique is really great.

    I hope he continues.

    We should both be happy we got lineman this year though. Heck, this next year is even good too. I'd like to get another tackle, but it seems like some of our guys are surprising. Although, a few of them are one year rentals, so you never know.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dream View Post
    Well, I've been saying Greg Ellis prior to his drafting and I think he'll be able to do that.

    A friend of mine on the Mane (not Kaylore or SoCal) was able to stand right next to the guy and he said, if God designed a defensive end (prototypical body) it'd be Crowder.

    Hopefully he can improve mentally and work on his snap anticipation and explosion off the line, if he can do that, it'll really help him, especially in the pass rush. As Bates mentioned, and guys like SoCal and Kaylore mentioned all week, his technique is really great.

    I hope he continues.

    We should both be happy we got lineman this year though. Heck, this next year is even good too. I'd like to get another tackle, but it seems like some of our guys are surprising. Although, a few of them are one year rentals, so you never know.
    Yeah, and Crowder will get bigger and stronger, and if he ends up in the 285-290 realm, he could be special, ala Trevor Pryce.

    Yes, we have some monsters on the D-Line.

    Yesterday, I was standing on the sideline with my sons and three of their young friends, watching some 7 on 7 drills in front of us, with the lineman on the field directly behind us...suddenly, the horn sounded and all the linemen started walking to the field directly through our line. Jarvis Moss, Sam Adams, E Ekuban, Warren, Crowder, etc were literally within two to three feet of me and the kids....you should have seen the look on their faces...it was like a heard of elephants were walking through our line. They were so awestruck at the pure size of these guys they did not even think to slap high-fives with the guys, or even say a word, which they could have easily done....I thought that was quite funny...just a group of 11 yr olds with their jaws dropped wide open. THAT was worth the trip up to Dove Valley alone.

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