The Broncos concluded their three-day mini camp Sunday afternoon. Here are some quick hits from today’s practice.
SPIRITED COMPETITION: Even though there was no contact during mini camp, there was some spirited back and forth between the offense and defense. Most of the talk was between Wesley Woodyard and Daniel Graham, with some Darrell Reid thrown in as well. All of it was in good fun, but you could tell the competition was fierce even in early May.
TWO MINUTES: After several spirited 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 drills, the team concluded practice with an 11-on-11 two-minute drill. Kyle Orton was five-of-six on his two-minute drive, completing three consecutive passes to Brandon Stokley before hitting Eddie Royal to set up a Matt Prater field goal. Chris Simms was up next, he was four-of-seven and completed two big passes to rookie Nate Swift to set up another Prater field goal.
SECONDARY SHINES: Although the offense had its moments on Sunday, so did the defense — especially the secondary. In 7-on-7 drills, Jabar Gaffney got behind the defense and went up to grab the reception, but a fast-closing Renaldo Hill knocked the ball away. Rookie Alphonso Smith also got into the action, knocking away a Simms pass intended for Chad Jackson. In 11-on-11 drills, both Andre Goodman and Jack Williams knocked away passes, Williams as he blitzed Orton who was looking for the bubble screen.
CATCHING PUNTS: At the end if practice, Head Coach Josh McDaniels gathered the team and gave them a challenge. If an offensive or defensive lineman was able to field a punt, their respective side of the ball wouldn’t have meetings following practice.
Ryan Harris represented the offense and Kenny Peterson the defense. Harris misjudged his punt, but made a nice diving recovery only to have the ball just fall out of his grasp — much to the enjoyment of the defense. Peterson — despite the heckling offense — was able to get under his opportunity and fielded the catch with ease.
Coach McDaniels gave the offense one more shot, but gave the defense the opportunity to pick which lineman would receive. Unanimously, they chose Ryan Clady. Brett Kern’s punt made Clady move to his left, but the big man was able to grab the punt cleanly and the offense and defense were able to call it a day without meetings.
“That was just something fun — I think the players got a kick out of it,” McDaniels said. “I told them if we had a good day of work today that we might throw them a bone, they had a good day of work so we let them have an opportunity to miss the very last meeting.”
MISC: Along with Prater’s two successful field goal attempts in 11-on-11, he was four-of-five during the field goal session, with his only miss coming on a bobbled hold by rookie Britton Colquitt … Tom Brandstater hit fellow rookie Kenny McKinley down the middle between two defenders in 7-on-7 drills … As the quarterbacks worked with the wide receivers, LaMont Jordan accurately fired passes to his fellow running backs … Donning number 66, Lonie Paxton snapped to the quarterbacks during 7-on-7 drills. Many had to double-take to make sure it wasn’t Tom Nalen back out there … With meetings canceled thanks to the punt catching skills of their teammates, Champ Bailey and Daniel Graham raced off the field in an effort to make it to the Pepsi Center before tip-off of the Nuggets – Mavericks playoff game … As the vets scampered off the field, all of the rookies worked on their conditioning with Strength and Conditioning Coach Rich Tuten. Many commented about the altitude as they were huffing and puffing off the field.
Here are some photos of the day and to read more about the day’s action, click here.