2020 Denver Broncos Training Camp: Day 6 news and notes – Mile High Report

Day six of Denver Broncos camp is in the books and it was a tough one injury wise. We have a potential serious injury to starting inside linebacker Todd Davis, K.J. Hamler sidelined for two weeks, Von Miller(GASP) dealing with a tweaked elbow and Melvin Gordon dealing with a tweaked rib injury as well. We also have Jerry Jeudy doing Jerry Jeudy things, a rookie linebacker who could see some playing time in 2020 and more!

Injuries begin to pile up

Heading into today’s practice, the Broncos have avoided the injury bug through their first five days of Training Camp. However, that all changed on day 6 of Broncos Camp when we saw one potentially serious injury to a starting defender, a rookie sidelined for two weeks, and two injuries to two more key players, including Von Miller.

Yikes.

First, rookie second round pick, wide receiver K.J. Hamler will be sidelined for two weeks with a hamstring injury. Those pesky injuries seem to get a few players a camp, so thankfully it’s only a minor injury and we’ll see the explosive rook on the field sooner rather than later.

Next we have Todd Davis who appears to have suffered a major injury during Training Camp for the second consecutive summer. He was carted off the field and many speculated achilles or ACL but thankfully it was “only” a calf strain. However, it’s the same injury he had last summer that sidelined him throughout camp and through the first handful games of the 2019 season. So, the severity will be telling here, but sounds like he’ll be sidelined for awhile

“KJ’s got a hamstring that he’s been trying to work through. He hadn’t been able to do that. He’ll be on the shelf for a couple weeks. Todd hurt his leg there. I wasn’t sure. It kind of happened towards the end of practice on the other side of the field from where I was at. I’m not sure yet. I don’t have anything to report there.”

Next, we have Von Miller and running back Melvin Gordon who suffered injuries as well. These seem a little more minor(hopefully) as Head Coach Vic Fangio stated that Von “tweaked” his elbow while Gordon “tweaked” his jobs.

“Von tweaked his elbow so we pulled him out. Melvin tweaked his ribs, so we pulled him out too. I don’t know the severity of either one.”

So, let us hope that these two are just dealing with some minors bumps and bruises and won’t miss much time if any. Both are receiving tests, so hopefully we get some good news sooner rather than later.

With K.J. Hamler down, look for DaeSean Hamilton to get more invovled but also don’t sleep on rookie Tyrie Cleveland who has been doing well reportedly. These two have appeared to separate themselves from the competition.

With Davis down for awhile, look for Josey Jewell to be elevated into a starting role, at least in running downs. He has been having a good camp according to onlookers so he’ll get his chance again this summer. Josh Watson is another player to watch here. However, rookie linebacker Justin Strnad is the guy to watch here. More on that later! (That’s a tease folks!)

Jerry Jeudy continues to make plays

Another day and another glowing Jerry Jeudy review. The rookie made some more impact plays today and when Drew Lock isn’t throwing to Courtland Sutton(He’s doing it a lot apparently) Jeudy is getting the rest and making it look easy out there.

The Broncos coaching staff is trying Jeudy out in multiple roles to see where he’s best at it and what he can and can’t do and so they can get the best unit out there on game days.

“Right now, we’re teaching him all the sports for two reasons—one, find the best spot for him not only for him individually, but for us as a unit—what’s our best combination. Two, it’s always good to—guys need to know other spots because in the game when you’re only dressing four or five, when things happen, guys have to be able to know more than one position. It’s twofold.”

If you studied Jeudy at all during the draft process you will know he can lineup anywhere and make plays. He has the speed to go deep, the separation ability to get open no matter what, and excellent route running ability to be dangerous in the slot.

Versatility is key and injuries will unfortunately will happen so it’s good to see what he can do and give him some reps in these roles as well.

Speaking of Jeudy’s route running ability, Head Coach Vic Fangio was asked about this after practice today. He told the media that it was obvious Jeudy is a good route runner, but that he’ll need to adapt to beating press coverage’s in the NFL. He continued by saying that Jeudy isn’t there yet as a pro but think he can achieve this.

“He is a good route runner. That was obvious watching his college tape. He’s got a good feel for it, but he’s going to have to be able to bring that up to the next level against press coverage and against various different coverages that he’ll see in the NFL. He’ll see more than he saw in college. He’s going to have to adapt that ability to bring it to the next level. He’s not there yet but think he should be able to.”

I think it’s clear that the Broncos at the very least have two stud young wide receivers on their roster who will be able to grow with a young quarterback, a young and explosive tight end and a talented backfield. It’s pretty exciting to see how much this group has improved just from this time last year.

Rookie Justin Strnad will see some playing time as a rookie

With Todd Davis going down for what appears to be an extended amount of time, someone will need to step up and replace the snaps he would be playing. Josey Jewell received those today and will likely continue getting them going forward, but don’t sleep on the rookie Justin Strnad.

Right now, I think we’ll see Jewell get the start and play running down for the Broncos, but it sounds like Strnad could see time in sub-packages his rookie year. He’s a rangy athletic linebacker who has the coverage chops to handle the role and is a player who will excel in space. He’ll experience growing pains obviously, but it seems like he’s getting these reps in practice.

9NEWS Denver’s Mike Klis stated that it’s becoming obvious Strand will be getting some playing time this year. I assumed sub-package play was always in the cards for him, but with Davis down, it’ll be interesting to see if he can begin to push Jewell for an even larger role.

Yesterday, Vic Fangio was asked about Strand and had some positive comments about the rookie linebacker.

“I’ve liked Justin so far. He’s shown some ability both in the pass defense area—the run game, we haven’t had a lot of shots of it yet. The inside linebacker, just to piggyback on the previous set of questions, it’s a position that will suffer more than others with the lack of training camp time and the lack of preseason games. He’s got a lot of work. We have to speed up the process with him. Overall, I think he’s doing well. I like what I see. A lot of that is based upon just what I see which enables me to predict. You might not be seeing it on tape or you guys watching in practice live, but I like certain things that indicate to me that he’ll be able to do it eventually.”

Fangio isn’t one to hand out compliments like that, so when he praises someone, especially a rookie, it’s noteworthy in my book. So he’ll be a player to watch in the coming days for sure.

Fellow linebacker A.J. Johnson also had some glowing praise for the rookie as well. He told the media that while Strand is not perfect(and neither is he) that he’s looking smooth out there and that he’s glad the Broncos drafted him.

“He’s looking clean. Obviously, he’s running with the receivers, getting good drops, picking up the defense really fast. He’s looking really good. Obviously, it’s just three practices in so nobody’s going to be perfect. I’m not perfect. He’s not perfect, but so far he’s doing really well and looking really good. I’m glad we got him as a linebacker.”

The Davis injury sucks, and hopefully it’s not too serious, but it does add some more competition to watch during camp.

Injury Updates

News and Notes

  • Rookie tight end Albert O. continues to show a nose for the ball in the end zone caught another touchdown during today’s practice.
  • Rookie center Lloyd Cushenberry took some more first-team reps at center today but Patrick Morris started the day at center.
  • Quarterback Drew Lock is targeting wide receiver Courtland Sutton early and often. Take notes fantasy football players!

Tweets from Camp

Quotables

Head Coach Vic Fangio on his impressions of WR Tyrie Cleveland.

“I’ve liked him so far. What I’ve liked is I think he’s gotten a little bit better each day since he’s been here all the way back to the early group of training camp. I just think he’s gotten a little bit better and better each day. I like his demeanor. I like his work ethic. I think he’s a guy that will bring special teams value if he’s a guy that suits up on game day if he makes the team. I like where he’s at right now. Hopefully he won’t level off. Hopefully he’ll continue to improve.”

Head Coach Vic Fangio on how he is balancing getting the first team reps with evaluating who will make the roster and what players can do to impress the staff when not getting as many reps.

“We’re trying to get them enough reps. They’re not getting as much as the ones, but we think we’re getting them a good amount in the amount of time we can be out there. We’re trying our best there, but obviously they have to take advantage of every rep that they do get to execute it, know the assignment, play it with the right technique, then be able to finish it with talent. We’re cognizant of that problem that you are alluding to. I think we’ve had a good first week of camp as far as what we’ve been able to accomplish in practice. Then you look at well it’s really not the first week of camp because—it’s the first week of camp, but the end of the first week of camp is closer to the first game than normal. We just have to constantly play that fine line of getting the team ready also with getting enough snaps for everybody to evaluate because one of the most important things we have to do is pick the 53-man roster.”

Left tackle Garett Bolles on how being in his second season with Offensive Line Coach Mike Munchak has helped him.

“That’s huge for me. Me and Coach Munchak have a really great relationship. We talked regularly during practice, before the game, after the game, just trying to get me better. This is the first time in my career that I’ve had the same O-line coach for the second year in a row. I’m just looking forward to our relationship to continue to get better. I trust him. I believe in him. I know he believes in me. I just have to do whatever I can to make him know that he can trust me.”

Defensive lineman Shelby Harris on why he feels the defense can be successful this season

“You see the players we have? We have nothing but dogs on our defense. I’ve been saying this all year and I’ve been saying this all offseason. I feel like our defense is a dominant defense, and as a player, you have to have the utmost confidence in your team and in your defense. That’s why I was saying we’re going to be 16-0 until someone proves us wrong. As a player, you never go into a game thinking you’re going to lose. You think you’re going to win every one of them. With our defense, I feel like our defense is such a close-knit group of veterans and young guys mixed together. I see nothing but positive things happening for us this season.”

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