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Old 05-14-2016, 09:33 AM   #1
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Default Kyle Kragen

Kyle Kragen follows in his father's cleats with Broncos

some of you remember his Dad....




ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) The rookie linebacker wearing No. 57 reminded Denver Broncos defensive coordinator Wade Phillips of someone. His tenacity, his never-quit motor on the field all way too familiar.

Skip back nearly three decades. Think nose tackle instead of linebacker. Swap No. 57 for 71.

Oh yeah, Kragen's kid. Phillips immediately felt his age.

Kyle Kragen was added to the roster on May 6 as a college free agent. In 1989, his father, Greg, became a Pro Bowler in Phillips' system during the defensive guru's first go-around with the Broncos.

"If Kyle Kragen has kids, maybe I'll coach them, too," the 68-year-old Phillips laughed.

It will take some work for Kyle to make a team coming off a Super Bowl title and already boasting outside linebackers such as Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware. But if anyone can help him, it's Phillips.

He did wonders for his dad.

Following a career at Utah State, Greg made the Broncos in 1985 and had four solid seasons before Phillips' arrival as defensive coordinator in '89. That's when Greg took his game to another level. Over the next four years under the tutelage of Phillips and the coaching staff, Greg had six fumble recoveries, 13 sacks and 352 tackles.

At 6-foot-3, 263 pounds, he was an undersized nose tackle. At 6-foot-2, 245 pounds, Kyle is in a similar spot at linebacker.

"There's no question Kyle is in a place where these height and size requirements, they're not etched in stone in Wade's defense," Greg said. "It's up to Kyle to show what he can do on the field."

Kyle wasn't selected during the draft a few weeks ago after a senior season at California in which he led the Golden Bears in tackles for loss, sacks and QB hurries. He was all set to head to minicamp with Green Bay when the Broncos suddenly extended an invitation. The thought of following in his father's footsteps proved too tempting.

"It's really cool, because I grew up rooting for the Broncos, watching the Broncos with my dad," Kyle said.

Over the years, Kyle has watched footage from his father's playing days with the Broncos, especially those three Super Bowl appearances (all losses).

Naturally, his favorite player other than Clay Matthews and Peyton Manning was dad. Modeled his game after him, too.

"With Greg, we'd tell him, 'Run to the ball' and he'd just keep running when everybody else is stopped," said Phillips, who also coached Ted Washington Sr. while with the then Houston Oilers in the '70s and later Washington's son as head coach of the Broncos in '94. "Greg goes after it. The same with Kyle."

The reason Kyle picked No. 57 with Denver isn't fancy he was handed that jersey. Sure, he would've liked to wear 71, but it's not a linebacker's number.

"It's a lot of emotions you go through seeing him there," said Greg, who also spent time with Kansas City and Carolina during a 13-year career. "At the same time, there's the reality to it as well. He's got a tough, tough climb ahead of him."

Kyle didn't start playing tackle football until high school. It had nothing to do with his father's fear of concussions, simply that Greg didn't want to push him onto the field.

So Kyle played basketball until he could no longer resist the lure of the football field. At first, he was a quarterback.

"But there's no quarterback lineage in the family," cracked Greg, who's now a defensive line coach at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, California, and using the same sort of techniques he picked up from coaches while with Denver.

Kyle eventually switched to defense in high school and blossomed. Last season with Cal, he had a 14-tackle performance at Utah, and a 2 -sack day against Washington State.

"My dad taught me to overcome not being the best athlete with hard work," Kyle said. "It's going to take zero mental mistakes and incredible effort and succeeding on special teams (to make this team)."

A few years ago, the Kragens ventured to Denver and toured the Broncos' training facility. It's changed quite a bit since those days when Greg ran onto the practice field.

"Life's crazy that he's now there and on the same fields that I used to slog it out on," Greg said.

Same defensive coordinator, too, who's saying similar things about the son he one said about the father.

"Greg was a go-getter, the kind of guy you wanted on your team," Phillips said. "Kyle's a go-getter, you can tell that right away. He definitely got that from his dad."

http://www.pro32.ap.org/article/kyle...cleats-broncos
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Old 05-14-2016, 09:43 AM   #2
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He plays with great effort.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oR5x...=SeanBialaszek

If he can make an impact on special teams, he has a chance. Elway kept 5 OLBs on the roster last season because of Lerentee McCray's contributions on special teams. So Kragen can be McCray's replacement.
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Old 05-14-2016, 10:34 AM   #3
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"If Kyle Kragen has kids, maybe I'll coach them, too," the 68-year-old Phillips laughed.
Oh how I love Wade.
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Old 05-14-2016, 11:19 AM   #4
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He plays with great effort.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oR5x...=SeanBialaszek

If he can make an impact on special teams, he has a chance. Elway kept 5 OLBs on the roster last season because of Lerentee McCray's contributions on special teams. So Kragen can be McCray's replacement.
His play recognition is pretty damn good.
But what's best about him is he doesn't get washed out in the scrums and running plays. He sheds blockers really well, and gets to the ball carrier pretty fast.
He's a bit stiff in open space though, when chasing the QB. However, all of the Pac12 guys are extremely mobile QBs.
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Old 05-14-2016, 11:28 AM   #5
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Oh how I love Wade.
I noticed that too. Lifetime pass as DC.
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Old 05-14-2016, 02:54 PM   #6
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He plays with great effort.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oR5x...=SeanBialaszek

If he can make an impact on special teams, he has a chance. Elway kept 5 OLBs on the roster last season because of Lerentee McCray's contributions on special teams. So Kragen can be McCray's replacement.
Racist?
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Old 05-14-2016, 03:05 PM   #7
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Somebody not afraid of his fathers legacy and an appreciation of where he came from.

You hearing this Max McCaffrey??
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Old 05-14-2016, 03:37 PM   #8
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Seems like a player who always hustles. Would be a good story if he could make the team. He may have to start out on practice squad. Definitely will be looking to see how he does in training camp and preseason.
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Old 05-14-2016, 03:40 PM   #9
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Seems like a player who always hustles. Would be a good story if he could make the team. He may have to start out on practice squad. Definitely will be looking to see how he does in training camp and preseason.
Yeah, no way he makes the team, but Practice Squad a possibility
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Old 05-14-2016, 03:57 PM   #10
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Racist?
Nope. Taking plays off has nothing to do with race or athletic ability. He plays hard and keeps going even when the play is not coming at his direction.

I thought we'd be beyond this point after watching white athletes like J.J. Watt and Luke Kuechly.

The rookie WR from Germany is 6'4 1/2", 227 with 4.43 speed and a 39 vertical. He'd be the most freakishly athletic receiver on our roster. He's bigger than Demaryius Thomas and I doubt DT can run a 4.43 40-yard dash.

OLB Eric Striker went undrafted because of his lack of size and athleticism for NFL standards and he's another player that play with great effort. He's black.

Praising a player's effort has nothing to do with being racist towards a football player.
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Old 05-14-2016, 04:02 PM   #11
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He will likely take the Shaq Barrett route. PS for a year and then to the active roster and stick.
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Old 05-14-2016, 04:35 PM   #12
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Smart football!

Keeps his assignment AND runs to the ball until the whistle. That's not an easy concept to get players to accept. If they have the athletic ability, they generally rely too much on it and can run themselves out of the play. Kids' got a great motor and won't stop. My only question is will it be enough? There are super talented guys on the Broncos.
Work your butt off Kyle!
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Old 05-14-2016, 04:45 PM   #13
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He will likely take the Shaq Barrett route. PS for a year and then to the active roster and stick.
^^^^this^^^^
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Old 05-14-2016, 04:48 PM   #14
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Al Swearengen was cooler.

Post 30,000.
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Old 05-14-2016, 05:03 PM   #15
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Al Swearengen was cooler.

Post 30,000.
What, no "out", no drama, no crazy, just "Post 30,000."

I'm disappointed.
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Old 05-14-2016, 05:03 PM   #16
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Nope. Taking plays off has nothing to do with race or athletic ability. He plays hard and keeps going even when the play is not coming at his direction.

I thought we'd be beyond this point after watching white athletes like J.J. Watt and Luke Kuechly.

The rookie WR from Germany is 6'4 1/2", 227 with 4.43 speed and a 39 vertical. He'd be the most freakishly athletic receiver on our roster. He's bigger than Demaryius Thomas and I doubt DT can run a 4.43 40-yard dash.

OLB Eric Striker went undrafted because of his lack of size and athleticism for NFL standards and he's another player that play with great effort. He's black.

Praising a player's effort has nothing to do with being racist towards a football player.
DT recorded a 4.38 at 238lbs. Not that 4.43 AT 227 isn't freakish....you just kinda chose the wrong guy to measure him to.
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Old 05-14-2016, 05:05 PM   #17
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Elway, Kubiak, Phillips, Dennison, Kragen....


I just love the tradition. Broncos family. Maybe nostalgia is clouding my brain, but it's awesome to see former Broncos' players, coaches, player's kids come home.

Even better when they come home, then hoist the Lombardi.

Here's hoping he finds a way to make the team.
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Old 05-14-2016, 05:06 PM   #18
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Nope. Taking plays off has nothing to do with race or athletic ability. He plays hard and keeps going even when the play is not coming at his direction.

I thought we'd be beyond this point after watching white athletes like J.J. Watt and Luke Kuechly.

The rookie WR from Germany is 6'4 1/2", 227 with 4.43 speed and a 39 vertical. He'd be the most freakishly athletic receiver on our roster. He's bigger than Demaryius Thomas and I doubt DT can run a 4.43 40-yard dash.

OLB Eric Striker went undrafted because of his lack of size and athleticism for NFL standards and he's another player that play with great effort. He's black.

Praising a player's effort has nothing to do with being racist towards a football player.
Just an fyi but DT is faster than Sanders. DT ran a 4.38 40 and Sanders a 4.41.
Terrible analogy.
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Old 05-14-2016, 05:07 PM   #19
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DT recorded a 4.38 at 238lbs. Not that 4.43 AT 227 isn't freakish....you just kinda chose the wrong guy to measure him to.
DT did not run an official 40-yard dash before the draft because of his foot injury. So, any time thrown out there is speculative and cannot be verified. Like many players who claim they can run 4.2 and will challenge Chris Johnson for the fastest 40-yard dash and then when the real time comes...
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Old 05-14-2016, 05:10 PM   #20
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Just an fyi but DT is faster than Sanders. DT ran a 4.38 40 and Sanders a 4.41.
Terrible analogy.
Again, DT does not have an official 40-yard dash. Just speculation like Bo Jackson's "4.12". No official time. And a 227-pound WR running 4.43 is much more impressive than 186-pound Sanders running 4.41 in 2010...
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Old 05-14-2016, 05:11 PM   #21
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DT is the hound. EM is the rabbit.
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Old 05-14-2016, 05:17 PM   #22
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Again, DT does not have an official 40-yard dash. Just speculation like Bo Jackson's "4.12". No official time. And a 227-pound WR running 4.43 is much more impressive than 186-pound Sanders running 4.41 in 2010...
Most consider Sanders to be the fastest WR on the team and DT is faster than him.
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Old 05-14-2016, 06:28 PM   #23
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Nope. Taking plays off has nothing to do with race or athletic ability. He plays hard and keeps going even when the play is not coming at his direction.

I thought we'd be beyond this point after watching white athletes like J.J. Watt and Luke Kuechly.

The rookie WR from Germany is 6'4 1/2", 227 with 4.43 speed and a 39 vertical. He'd be the most freakishly athletic receiver on our roster. He's bigger than Demaryius Thomas and I doubt DT can run a 4.43 40-yard dash.

OLB Eric Striker went undrafted because of his lack of size and athleticism for NFL standards and he's another player that play with great effort. He's black.

Praising a player's effort has nothing to do with being racist towards a football player.
Sorry, you missed the joke.
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Old 05-14-2016, 07:13 PM   #24
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Cool story, didn't realize we had picked him up. Enjoyed watching his dad play.
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Old 05-14-2016, 08:05 PM   #25
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Most consider Sanders to be the fastest WR on the team and DT is faster than him.
This doesn't even make any sense.
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