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Projecting the 53-Man Roster, 2014 Edition

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  • Projecting the 53-Man Roster, 2014 Edition

    Now is the long, dark nighttime of our football soul -- the draft is finished, and training camp is more than 2 months away. So, just for something to do, here's my 4th annual stab at projecting the 53-man opening day roster:

    Quarterbacks
    # on roster in 2011: 3
    # on roster in 2012: 3
    # on roster in 2013: 3

    Positional Grade: A-
    Positional Analysis: One of the better quarterback situations in the league, with the reigning 2013 MVP as the starter, backed up by a young heir and a spare who are being given multiple years to develop. The only question at this position is whether Bryn Renner can overtake Dysert for the 3rd slot, which I think is highly unlikely.

    Locks
    Peyton Manning
    Brock Osweiler

    On the bubble
    Zac Dysert
    Bryn Renner

    Camp Fodder
    Derek Thompson

    ***********************************************

    Running Backs
    # on roster in 2011: 4
    # on roster in 2012: 5
    # on roster in 2013: 4

    Positional Grade: C+
    Positional Analysis: This position took a hit when Moreno left for greener pastures. The hope (and the hype) is that Montee Ball is ready to be a stud-daddy bellcow back, and maybe he is, but it remains to be proven. Hillman also has some untapped potential, but is running out of time and chances to get out of the doghouse and onto the field.
    We'll almost certainly keep 4 backs on the roster, so Anderson and Bibbs are probably both in. Clay, Thompson, Thigpen, and Williams are unknowns, and all look like "just guys" at first glance.

    Locks
    Montee Ball
    Ronnie Hillman

    On the bubble
    C.J. Anderson
    Kapri Bibbs

    Camp Fodder
    Brennan Clay
    Juwan Thompson
    Jerodis Williams
    Damien Thigpen

    ***********************************************

    Wide Receivers
    # on roster in 2011: 5
    # on roster in 2012: 5
    # on roster in 2013: 5

    Positional Grade: A+
    Positional Analysis: Amazingly, this unit looks even better than it did last year. Decker and Holliday are gone and have been replaced by Latimer and Sanders, which is an upgrade in my book. The only question in training camp is for the 5th spot -- it's probably Bubba Caldwell once again, but Burse, Hardin, or Fowler could unseat him if they play lights-out in the preseason.

    Locks
    Demaryius Thomas
    Cody Latimer
    Emmanuel Sanders
    Wes Welker

    On the bubble
    Andre Caldwell
    Isaiah Burse
    Greg Hardin
    Bennie Fowler

    Camp Fodder
    Jordan Norwood
    Nathan Palmer
    Greg Wilson
    Devin Aguilar

    ***********************************************

    Tight Ends
    # on roster in 2011: 3
    # on roster in 2012: 4
    # on roster in 2013: 4

    Positional Grade: B
    Positional Analysis: Julius Thomas was a 2013 pro bowler, and is improving by leaps and bounds as a blocker and route runner. However, the other tight end slots are iffy at best. Tamme is another year older, and really started to show diminishing returns last year, while Dreesen doesn't seem to have anything left in the tank.
    The coaches clearly like Virgil Green on running downs and on special teams, so I've got him ahead of Dreesen if they only keep 3 tight ends this year. Gerrell Robinson has been hanging around the practice squad for two years now, first as a receiver and now as a receiving tight end. He's got a chance to unseat one of the players above him on the bubble list.

    Locks
    Julius Thomas

    On the bubble
    Jacob Tamme
    Virgil Green
    Joel Dreesen
    Gerrell Robinson

    Camp Fodder
    Cameron Morrah
    Jameson Konz

    ***********************************************

    Offensive Linemen
    # on roster in 2011: 9
    # on roster in 2012: 8
    # on roster in 2013: 9

    Positional Grade: A
    Positional Analysis: This group also looks slightly better than it did last year -- Ramirez and Clark both filled in very well as injury replacements, and are solid starters (at worst) at center and right tackle. Orlando Franklin is almost definitely an upgrade over Beadles at guard, and Vasquez ended up being one of the best players at any position in the NFL in 2013, according to Pro Football Focus. Schofield will be given a chance to start at right tackle, but most likely he'll play out the year as a swing tackle/guard all along the line, which is ideal for a young offensive lineman.
    So, there looks to be six players competing for 3 remaining spots on next year's offensive line. As a 2014 draft pick, Paradis probably has a leg up on this competition, but Ben Garland is also a sentimental favorite among teammates, coaches, and fans, and he's out of practice squad eligibility, so it's now or never to make the 53-man roster. Vinston Painter and Ramone Harewood are physical wonders, but not particularly good football players -- if the lightbulb comes on, one or both of them could surprise.

    Locks
    Ryan Clady
    Louis Vasquez
    Orlando Franklin
    Manny Ramirez
    Chris Clark
    Michael Schofield

    On the bubble
    Matt Paradis
    Will Montgomery
    Winston Justice
    Vinston Painter
    Ben Garland
    Ramone Harewood

    Camp Fodder
    Ryan Miller
    Paul Cornick
    Aslam Sterling

    ***********************************************

    Defensive Linemen
    # on roster in 2011: 10
    # on roster in 2012: 9
    # on roster in 2013: 7

    Positional Grade: B+
    Positional Analysis: A nice, deep group -- so wonderful after years of wandering in the defensive line desert.... This group is stout and scheme-diverse. Mitch Unrein and Sione Fua are the two players that are the most bubble-iscious, and their ultimate fate depends on how many DL we retain this year (which is anywhere from 7 to 10 players historically).

    Locks
    DeMarcus Ware
    Sylvester Williams
    Terrance Knighton
    Derek Wolfe
    Malik Jackson
    Kevin Vickerson

    On the bubble
    Marvin Austin
    Quanterus Smith
    Mitch Unrein
    Sione Fua

    Camp Fodder
    Kenny Anunike
    John Youboty
    Hall Davis
    Mister Cobble
    Greg Latta
    Will Pericak

    ***********************************************

    Linebackers
    # on roster in 2011: 7
    # on roster in 2012: 7
    # on roster in 2013: 7

    Positional Grade: B-
    Positional Analysis: This group worries me a bit -- lots of question marks even with the starters. Can Von Miller be trusted to stay away from drugs and/or drop some of that fat he packed on during his suspension last year? (short answer: no) Will Irving ever develop into a starting NFL linebacker? Will 5th round pick Barrow be able to contribute? Our depth here is also a little concerning -- the backups are iffy at best. Look for the Broncos to pick up one or two veterans before the start of training camp at this position.

    Locks
    Von Miller
    Danny Trevathan
    Nate Irving
    Lamin Barrow

    On the bubble
    Lerentee McCray
    Steven Johnson
    Brandon Marshall
    Corey Nelson
    Shaquil Barrett

    Camp Fodder
    Jamar Chaney
    Jerrell Harris
    L.J. Fort
    Chase Vaughn

    ***********************************************

    Cornerbacks
    # on roster in 2011: 5
    # on roster in 2012: 5
    # on roster in 2013: 6

    Positional Grade: B+
    Positional Analysis: A very strong group, but much hinges on Harris returning all the way from his injury, and Roby and Webster developing quickly. Tony "Stickyman" Carter looks well-positioned to cockroach his way onto the back end of the roster for yet another year.

    Locks
    Aqib Talib
    Chris Harris
    Bradley Roby
    Kayvon Webster

    On the bubble
    Tony Carter

    Camp Fodder
    Louis Young
    Jerome Murphy
    Jordan Sullen
    Paul Webster

    ***********************************************

    Safeties
    # on roster in 2011: 4
    # on roster in 2012: 4
    # on roster in 2013: 5

    Positional Grade: B
    Positional Analysis: On paper, T.J. Ward and Rahim Moore look like a very strong starting combo. However, Moore is going to need to stay healthy and also take the next step as a ball-hawking centerfielder for me to adjust this grade any higher.
    We have nice depth here as well, with several good special teamers who can also play cornerback in a pinch.

    Locks
    T.J. Ward
    Rahim Moore

    On the bubble
    David Bruton
    Duke Ihenacho
    Quinton Carter
    Omar Bolden
    John Boyett

    Camp Fodder
    Eric Hagg
    Charles Mitchell

    ***********************************************

    Specialists
    # on roster in 2011: 3
    # on roster in 2012: 3
    # on roster in 2013: 3

    Positional Grade: A
    Positional Analysis: Same as last year, a very solid and steady group, all three of which have pro bowl potential. As I've said before, Brewer is the type of player which may end up having a roster spot for 15+ years -- if you're gonna buy a jersey, his might be the one!

    Locks
    Matt Prater
    Britton Colquitt
    Aaron Brewer

    Camp Fodder
    Steven Clark
    Tanner Hedstrom

    ***********************************************

    Projected Final 53-Man Roster

    QB: Manning / Osweiler / Dysert
    RB: Ball / Hillman / Anderson / Bibbs
    WR: D. Thomas / Caldwell
    WR: Sanders / Latimer
    WR: Welker
    TE: J. Thomas / Green / Tamme / G. Robinson
    LT: Clady / Painter
    LG: Franklin / Garland
    OC: Ramirez / Paradis
    RG: Vasquez
    RT: Clark / Schofield

    DE: Ware / Q. Smith
    DE: Wolfe / M. Jackson
    DT: S. Williams / Vickerson
    DT: Knighton / Austin
    SLB: Miller / McCray / Barrett
    MLB: Irving / Barrow
    WLB: Trevathan / S. Johnson
    CB: Talib / Roby
    CB: Harris / Webster / T. Carter
    FS: Moore / Bruton / Q. Carter
    SS: Ward / Ihenacho

    K: Prater
    P: Colquitt
    LS: Brewer

    Practice Squad

    1. QB Bryn Renner
    2. S John Boyett
    3. WR Isaiah Burse
    4. WR Greg Hardin
    5. WR Benny Fowler
    6. DE John Youboty
    7. LB Corey Nelson
    8. DT Mister Cobble (based on his name alone)
    Last edited by BowlenBall; 05-16-2014, 10:02 PM.

  • #2
    I agree with most of this, except for Dysert and Ramirez.

    I don't think Dysert is in any way a lock over Brenner. Brenner has first round talent, but fell due to missing half of his senior season with an injury. He has far more upside than Dysert and if he's healthy and performs reasonably well in camp I think Dysert is gone.

    Manny clearly isn't the long term solution at the position and if Montgomery beats him out for the starting spot, his roster position is in serious jeopardy. If Paradis and Montgomery both have unimpressive camps, Manny will remain the starter, but I think the C position is completely up for grabs. No lock there.

    Comment


    • #3
      Solid write up. Rep given. I would disagree with you on a few things though.

      1. I would put CJ as a lock and Hillman on the bubble.
      2. Jamar Chaney is a solid vet and coverage LBer. He should have a very good chance to stick.
      3. Bruton isn't going anywhere. He's one of the better special teams players in the league and provides solid depth at both safety spots.
      4. My money is on Steven Clark to beat out Colquitt for the punting job.

      Comment


      • #4
        Colquit just signed a 3 yr extension he isn't going anywhere.

        Comment


        • #5
          You don't have Unrein making the team and I think he likely does. He's cheap, but still makes plays when given a chance. I think they keep 9 DL.

          Hillman is no lock. He fumbles again in preseason and he's gone.

          I wouldn't be surprised if the Broncos looked for another TE to sign at a later date.

          I hope Tony Carter is playing someplace else.

          Comment


          • #6
            Can't believe what's happened to Colquitt.

            He looked like a lock until they brought in competition.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by The Joker View Post
              Can't believe what's happened to Colquitt.

              He looked like a lock until they brought in competition.
              Are you saying Colquitt has been unlocked?

              Comment


              • #8
                Excellent work BolwenBall.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I think Will Montgomery makes the team.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by peacepipe View Post
                    Colquit just signed a 3 yr extension he isn't going anywhere.
                    From a financial standpoint, it would make sense.

                    Can you really agree with him making as much as he does. With as many key players due big money soon, need every penny possible.

                    They'd take a small dead-money hit this year, the last 2 not so bad.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Dedhed View Post
                      I don't think Dysert is in any way a lock over Brenner. Brenner has first round talent, but fell due to missing half of his senior season with an injury. He has far more upside than Dysert and if he's healthy and performs reasonably well in camp I think Dysert is gone.
                      +1

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Dedhed View Post
                        I agree with most of this, except for Dysert and Ramirez.

                        I don't think Dysert is in any way a lock over Brenner. Brenner has first round talent, but fell due to missing half of his senior season with an injury. He has far more upside than Dysert and if he's healthy and performs reasonably well in camp I think Dysert is gone.

                        Manny clearly isn't the long term solution at the position and if Montgomery beats him out for the starting spot, his roster position is in serious jeopardy. If Paradis and Montgomery both have unimpressive camps, Manny will remain the starter, but I think the C position is completely up for grabs. No lock there.
                        Maybe we can trade one of them.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          yep Montgomery will be our starting center..and RamMan will be back-up at Center and Guard.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by LikeABoss5820 View Post
                            From a financial standpoint, it would make sense.

                            Can you really agree with him making as much as he does. With as many key players due big money soon, need every penny possible.

                            They'd take a small dead-money hit this year, the last 2 not so bad.
                            It ONLY makes sense, from a money standpoint. Colquitt has been a reliable punter, ever since he came to Denver. Clark BETTER step up his game...

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I think Corey Nelson makes the roster. Need the speed.

                              Comment

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