Projecting The Denver Broncos Starting Offense


Oct 6, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) in the huddle in the first quarter of the game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos didn’t have to add many pieces to an offense that set multiple records last season, including points (606), touchdowns (76), and players with 10 or more touchdowns (5). Denver did however lose one of the four horseman from last season in Eric Decker who bolted for the money in New York, signing with the Jets.

Denver would capitalize on signing free-agent wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders to replace Decker. Sanders looks to be a better fit in the Broncos offense, adding more speed on opposite sites with teammate Demaryius Thomas. The Broncos would add another wide receiver via the draft in the 2nd round, taking Cody Latimer out of the University of Indiana – but don’t expect much out of his this season. This is Wes Welker‘s last year on contract which could ultimately slide Sanders into the slot role with Latimer emerging as a number two receiver the following season.

Denver would also land an offensive tackle in Michael Schofield in the third round looking to add beef to an o-line that was pushed around in the Super Bowl. Denver was without Pro-Bowl left tackle for most of the 2013-14’ campaign as he suffered a Lisfranc injury in week two against the New York Giants. Clady looks to be back on track to help protect Peyton Manning‘s blindside and will prove to be a tremendous addition to the offense.

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Now it’s time to take a look at the projected starting lineup.

QB: Peyton Manning

RB: Montee Ball

WR1: Demaryius Thomas
WR2: Emmanuel Sanders
WR3: Wes Welker

TE: Julius Thomas

LT: Ryan Clady
LG: Orlando Franklin
C: Manny Ramirez
RG: Louis Vasquez
RT: Chris Clark / Michael Schofield

Denver’s offensive line looks drastically improved from the Super Bowl. The addition of getting Ryan Clady back and sliding Orlando Franklin into the left guard spot assures Peyton Manning’s blindside will be projected. Broncos will have Pro-Bowl guard Louis Vasquez at the right guard position and the right-tackle position is something to keep an eye out for. It will be a battle between Chris Clark (starting at LT in place of Ryan Clady) and rookie Michael Schofield.

Denver’s running back situation is a bit iffy regarding the back-ups. The case is still out on C.J. Anderson whether he can be a solid back-up to Montee Ball and we all know about Ronnie Hillman and his inconsistencies. Ball will be taking over the starting role as Knowshon Moreno left during free agency and signed a deal with the Miami Dolphins. Ball noted that he was more familiar with the playbook and schemes —  which is a good sign.

In conclusion, the offense didn’t really need much tinkering from a squad last season that set a record with points. Getting Ryan Clady back to protect Manning’s blindside will be huge and adding Emmanuel Sanders will add speed to a deep offense. With an improved defense and possibly more touches for the offense, they could be putting up ridiculous numbers yet again this fall.