Each offseason, every NFL team focuses on at least one area in need of an upgrade. So what aspect of the Denver Broncos is better these days?
Training camp have begun to open up all around the NFL for all 32 teams. And that means another preview series from End Zone Score. Dating back to early March, we have taken time to look at each club’s best offseason addition. We even dabbled into some pertinent and historical numbers and previewed an up-and-coming player for each franchise.
Contrary to popular opinions, no team in the league is perfect. That’s why there’s a constant search for talent when it comes to this game. Each club has done its best to bolster its roster. So in this instance, we have been taking a glance at each franchise and pinpoint the department in which a club made the most strides this offseason. We have looked at the AFC East, NFC East, AFC North, NFC North, AFC South and NFC South. We have already checked out the AFC West’s Kansas City Chiefs and Oakland Raiders. Now it’s time to preview the Denver Broncos.
Stop us if you have heard this before. The undoing of the Denver Broncos in 2016 was the team’s inability to consistently run the football. That combined with the defending Super Bowl champion’s failure to keep the opposition from controlling the ball on the ground added up to a 9-7 record after a 4-0 start.
This offseason, the team added some beef in both the offensive and defensive trenches. In fact, the former got some more help today as general manager John Elway traded for Philadelphia Eagles’ guard/tackle Allen Barbre for a conditional late-round draft choice in 2019. He joins additions such as Ronald Leary (Dallas Cowboys), Menelik Watson (Oakland Raiders) and 2017 first-round draft choice/tackle Garett Bolles (Utah).
But the focus here is on the defensive front, where free agency provided Domata Peko (Cincinnati Bengals) and Zach Kerr (Indianapolis Colts). Elway also used a second-round draft choice in April on Florida State defensive end DeMarcus Walker. The trio will combine with starting ends Derek Wolfe and improving Jared Crick in hopes of bouncing back when it comes to stopping the run. Only four teams in the league allowed more yards per game on the ground this past season. One year earlier, the club was ranked third in the NFL in rushing defense. Now new head coach Vance Joseph has some work to do.
If the Denver Broncos are to rebound from an off-year, they must get better play against the run. They’re in a division where they will get a steady dose of Spencer Ware (Kansas City Chiefs), Marshawn Lynch (Raiders) and Melvin Gordon (Los Angeles Chargers). It’s safe to say that there is more than a pending quarterback issue in the Mile High City. But look for this defense to rebound in this area this fall.