The Broncos were back in full pads for Thursday’s practice, and two more players returned to action.
Wide receiver Andre Caldwell and linebacker Nate Irving, both of whom suffered rib injuries against the Seattle Seahawks, were back on the practice field in full pads on Thursday.
Defensive end Jason Hunter (triceps), guard Chris Kuper (forearm), linebacker Keith Brooking (hamstring), linebacker Mike Mohamed (hamstring) and wide receiver Tyler Grisham (knee) did not participate in the session.
Defensive tackle Kevin Vickerson (concussion), “was out here, but he was not full-contact,” Head Coach John Fox said.
Safety Jim Leonhard was not in full pads, but participated in portions of practice. Brooking and Mohamed were on the field in shorts, taking in the session from the sideline.
- During one-on-ones between receivers and cornerbacks, Champ Bailey slapped the ball out of Demaryius Thomas’ hands on back-to-back reps to force incompletions in the end zone.
- Other standouts from the one-on-one session included cornerback Chris Harris, who had a nice pass breakup, cornerback Tracy Porter, who jammed wide receivers Brandon Stokley and Matthew Willis at the line and prevented completions and wide receiver Jason Hill, who caught a couple touchdowns.
- Defensive end Jeremy Beal notched a sack after fellow defensive lineman Robert Ayers flushed quarterback Brock Osweiler out of the pocket during team drills. Ayers had a sack of his own later in practice.
- Linebacker Wesley Woodyard made two big tackles during 9-on-7 drills, first meeting Moreno in the hole and second chasing him down on the sideline.
- Kicker Matt Prater hit a 60-yard field goal late in practice during a drill.
During the first red-zone drill of practice, Manning hit Stokley, Decker and tight end Joel Dreessen for touchdowns, while the defense prevented a score on the other three reps. Afterward, Head Coach John Fox rallied the defensive sideline, telling players that the bar should be set higher than winning 50 percent of the reps.