Archive for the ‘Darrent Williams’ Category

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Notes from Dallas…

August 16, 2007

The Broncos will have a special visitor today at camp. Rosalind Williams (Darrent William’s mother) said she is planning on visiting the team during the practice. Mike Shanahan had invited her visit with the team and Rosalind accepted even though it may be very emotional for everyone involved. The last time the team was in Dallas (eight months ago) it was for Darrent’s funeral.

“It’s difficult to see them, difficult knowing they’re in town. But I feel good they’re near and they’re close. That makes me feel good. I’m going to visit them tomorrow. I don’t know what I’ll tell them. Just seeing them, them seeing me, being able to see each other and hug each other will speak volumes. There may or may not be words. Just seeing each other is going to be a lot of therapy. It will give us all strength.”

— Rosalind Williams 8/15/07

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Andrew Mason has been keeping us up todate the practices down in Dallas:

Texas DAY 1 Morning Practice Report & Texas DAY 1 Afternoon Practice Report

Texas DAY 2 Morning Practice Report & Texas Day 2 Afternoon Practice Report

Day 3 Wrap-up Report

 

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TRAINING CAMP: DAY 4

August 1, 2007

NOTES AND NEWS FROM DAY FOUR OF TRAINING CAMP:

Day four and away we go!

If the biggest news yesterday was Domenik Hixon’s shoulder injury, the top story today should have been his return to the practice field.

However, Javon Walker broke his silence today and spoke to a throng of eager reporters after the morning practice. Much to their chagrin, he didn’t discuss the Jan. 1st death of Darrent Williams. But that didn’t stop every sports media outlet from leading with the story “Walker still silent on slain teammate” — way to respect the man’s emotional recovery dill weeds!

In ACTUAL football news, Ian Gold made it back into the line up and Domenik Hixon muscled through his shoulder pain to complete the morning practice. Brandon Marshall, however, sat out again. Shanahan noted that and made some pointed comments about the importance of beating the injury bug and getting out on the field.

“When guys get hurt, it really hurts their chances of making the team. For a guy like Domenik to come in after a first-degree shoulder separation is pretty impressive. He worked through it, and that is what you are hoping a guy is going to do.”

“A guy that keeps getting hurt, we can’t waste repetition on a guy that’s not out there. We have to have guys who can stay healthy.”

— Mike Shanahan 8/1/07

And if Shanahan wasn’t blunt enough, Ted Sundquist also commented on Brandon Marshall today.

“We’re counting on Brandon. We put a lot of time and effort into coaching him, getting him ready, but ultimately on a Mike Shanahan team you’ve got to go out on the field and perform”

— Ted Sundquist 8/1/07

Brandon Marshall needs to get his butt in gear, deal with a little pain and get out on that darn practice field — SOON.

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ATTENDANCE:

WR Marquay McDaniel was held out with a hamstring injury. Kenard Lang and Chad Mustard did not participate and Glenn Martinez was sidelined during the morning practice with a strained leg muscle.

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OFFENSIVE LINE UPS: WEDNESDAY

den-logo.jpg Wide Outs:
Walker and Brandon Stokley ran with the 1st Team.

den-logo.jpg Tight Ends:
No real change from the last few days.
den-logo.jpg Running Backs:
Again, no change. Travis Henry with Cecil Sapp running second. Mike Bell, Andre Hall and Young following behind.

den-logo.jpg O-line:
* 1st Team O-line was unchanged: LT Matt Lepsis, LG Ben Hamilton, C Tom Nalen, RG Chris Kuper and RT Erik Pears.

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DEFENSIVE LINE UPS: WEDNESDAY

den-logo.jpg D-line:
* 1st Team D-line stayed the same as the last couple of days: DE’s Ebenezer Ekuban and John Engelberger, DT’s Gerard Warren and Sam Adams, but Jimmy Kennedy replaced Adams for some reps this morning.

DIME PACKAGE NOTE: Unchanged from yesterday: Ekuban and Warren were the tackles with ends Jarvis Moss and Elvis Dumervil.

den-logo.jpg Linebackers:
* 1st Team LB’s were: Nate Webster took his turn at SAM today, D.J. Williams still impressing at MIKE and Ian Gold back at WILL.

den-logo.jpg Secondary:
No changes here as CB’s Champ Bailey and Dre’ Bly and Safeties Nick Ferguson and John Lynch played on the 1st Team. Foxworth was their Nickel back and Cox joined the 1st Team during work on the Dime Package.

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SPECIAL TEAMS LINE UPS: WEDNESDAY

den-logo.jpg Kick-Off Return Team:
Returners consisted of WR’s Quincy Morgan, David Kircus and Domenik Hixon each fielded some kicks during the afternoon session. Both Brandon Pace and Todd Sauerbrun got reps kicked off.

Read the rest of this entry ?

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ESPN Video on Darrent Williams and Damien Nash

July 10, 2007

ESPN ran a story on the impact of Darrent Williams and Damien Nash’s deaths this off-season. It contains comments from Mike Bell, Rod Smith, John Lynch and Domonique Foxworth. It’s a great reminder of how much we’ve lost this year — and how much being back on the football field will help the Broncos recover.

“Yeah, there are times where you’re on that last sprint and you’re not sure if you want to push, but then you say ‘hey, I know a couple of guys that would love to be here, but don’t have that opportunity.'”

— John Lynch 7/9/07

“I’m still out there with D. And I’m still out there with Damien, because they’re a part of me.”

— Rod Smoth 7/9/07

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Off-Season Recap

June 27, 2007

In an attempt to put our busy off-season into perspective, I’ve organized most of our moves and notable news this off-season into one timeline.  I did add two items from 2006 (Jay Cutler’s starting at QB and Al Wilson injuring his neck).  I’ve also added this timeline to a page under the Information.

Let me know if I missed anything.

2007 OFFSEASON TIMELINE

  • 11/27/06 — Cutler is named the starting QB. 
  • 12/3/06 — Al Wilson injures his neck during the Seattle game.
  • 1/01/07 — Shooting death of starting CB Darrent Williams.
  • 1/02/07 — Denver signs ten players for the 2007 season: FB Troy Fleming, QB Darrell Hackney, DE Carlos Hall, LB T.J. Hollowell, P Eddie Johnson, TE Teyo Johnson, G Kevin McAlmont, CB Lamont Reid, T Jacob Rogers and LB Cameron Vaughn.
  • 1/04/07 — Denver signs FB Thump Belton, CB Eric Hill, WR Glenn Martinez and G Doug Nienhius for the 2007 season.
  • 1/05/07 — Denver signs RB Andre Hall and CB Jeff Shoate for the 2007 season.
  • 1/09/07 — Denver fires Defensive Coordinator Larry Coyer.
  • 1/10/07 — Denver cuts loose defensive line/tackles coach Andre Patterson.
  • 1/11/07 — Jim Bates is is named Denver’s assistant head coach/defense and Bob Slowik is promoted from secondary coach to defensive coordinator.
  • 1/12/07 — Denver allocates five to NFL Europa: C Greg Eslinger, TE Teyo Johnson, G Kevin McAlmont, T Doug Nienhuis and CB Lamont Reid.
  • 1/16/07 — Denver’s TE coach, Tim Brewster, accepts the head coaching job at the University of Minnesota.
  • 1/17/07 — Bill Johnson is hired as the teams defensive line coach.
  • 1/28/07 — The Broncos hire Scott O’Brien as special-teams coach, Joe Baker as linebackers coach and moving former special-teams coach Ronnie Bradford to assistant defensive backs coach.
  • 2/11/07 — John Lynch and Champ Bailey help the AFC win the Pro Bowl.
  • 2/25/07 — RB Damien Nash passes away after a charity basketball event. 
  • 2/26/07 — Rod Smith undergoes hip surgery.
  • 3/02/07 — Denver trades with Detroit: CB Dre Bly for RB Tatum Bell, George Foster and a 5th-round pick in the draft.
  • 3/03/07 — Jake Plummer retires as the Broncos trade him to the Bucs for a conditional draft pick in 2008.  Denver also trade their 6th-round pick to Miami for a DT Dan Wilkinson.
  • 3/05/07 — Denver signs RB Travis Henry, G Montrae Holland and RB Paul Smith.
  • 3/09/07 — Denver signs TE Daniel Graham.
  • 3/12/07 — Denver re-signs WR Quincy Morgan.
  • 3/13/07 — Denver re-signs DE Kenny Peterson.
  • 3/19/07 — DE Courtney Brown is released.  Denver signs QB Patrick Ramsey.
  • 3/20/07 — Denver signs DT Alvin McKinley.
  • 3/22/07 — Denver signs WR Brandon Stokley.
  • 3/24/07 — Denver hires defensive assistant Charlie Jackson.
  • 3/28/07 — CB Dre Bly and the Broncos agree to a contract extention.
  • 3/31/07 — Denver’s trade with Miami for Dan Wilkinson is voided when Wilkinson doesn’t showup for his physical.
  • 4/03/07 — Off-season workouts begin.
  • 4/09/07 — Mike Shanahan agrees to a contract extention.
  • 4/12/07 — Denver signs WR David Terrell. 2007-08 NFL schedule is released.
  • 4/20/07 — Denver signs kicker Todd Sauerbrun.
  • 4/26/07 — Denver releases LB Al Wilson and signs LB Warrick Holdman and LB D.D. Lewis.
  • 4/28/07 — Denver moves up to draft DE Jarvis Moss.  They also draft DE Tim Crowder and OT Ryan Harris. 
  • 4/29/07 — Denver again moves up and drafts DT Marcus Thomas.
  • 5/01/07 — Denver waives RB Cedric Cobbs.
  • 5/02/07 — Denver signs five college free agents: G Tim Duckworth, DT Steven Harris, WR Marquay McDaniel, S Roderick Rogers and RB Selvin Young.
  • 5/07/07 — Denver signs college free agents C Mark Fenton and kicker Brandon Pace.  They release Tim Duckworth.
  • 5/14/07 — Denver waives TE Landon Trusty.
  • 5/16/07 — OTA days start with QB Camp.
  • 5/21/07 — TE Tony Scheffler breaks his left foot during practice. 
  • 5/29/07 — OTA days continue as Team Camp begins.
  • 6/04/07 — Denver signs DT Sam Adams.
  • 6/07/07 — Denver trades with St. Louis for DT Jimmy Kennedy.  They release CB Eric Hill.
  • 6/21/07 — C Greg Eslinger is named to the All-NFL Europa Team for his performance with the Cologne Centurions. 
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My list of least-known favorite players

May 21, 2007

It seems like every year around this time I find one or two players buried deep in Denver’s roster (or even practice squad) that I begin championing to friends and family. Over the year’s only a couple have risen to the starting line up while most turn out to be duds — and are quietly sent packing. Here’s a look at some of my choices from the last few years:

In 1999-2000, I was enamored with 6th round pick, TE Desmond Clark. I thought he had mad skills and was sad to see him go after the 2001 season; however, he has had considerable success the last few years in Chicago.

In 2001 I began following another sixth round draft pick, Kevin Kasper. Kasper didn’t last long with the Broncos and has journeyed to several other teams.

In 2002-03 I must have been blessed with good judgment as I began pulling for Reuben Droughns and Sam Brandon (both unknowns at the time) . Droughns was a special team guy and FB then, and I was thrilled to see him rise up and capture the starting RB job in 2005 — even though I was most fond of his blocking ability. Brandon was also a big special teams guy that has now become an important part of our defense.

Starting in 2003-04, Nate Jackson caught my eye and have enjoyed watching him stick with the team (even through his move from WR to TE). Also Cecil Sapp (I love cheering for the undrafted guys!) which has worked his way into the starting FB competition this year.

In 2005 it was QB Bradlee Van Pelt and our newest (and shortest) CB, Darrent Williams — what can I say, I also like to pull for the short guys! Darrent won the starting job his first year and BVP is now with the Houston Texans.

Last year it was undrafted RB Mike Bell, Safety Hamza Abdullah and WR David Kircus. Mike become a sensation last year by winning the backup job behind Tatum and Abdullah has had the honor of praise from players like Lynch and Ferguson, but Kircus didn’t get much playing time and remained mostly unnoticed last year.

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This year, in addtion to keeping a close eye on Jackson, Abdullah, Kircus and the others, RB Andre Hall and Safety Roderick Rogers are two players I can’t wait to see this preseason. Both players are college free agents (Andre Hall was picked up by Tampa last year after the draft and Rogers was picked up this year by Denver) and both have the potential to compete at the next level.

Andre Hall played one year of High School football. However, in that one year he led the county in rushing yardage with 1,742 yards and 26 touchdowns on 227 carries (7.7 avg). After a brief time at the Georgia Military Academy, he returned to Florida to attend USF. Hall left the Bulls as the all-time leading rusher (2,731 yrd) on 480 carries. Had had 24 TD’s and caught 44 passes for 470 yrds (10.7 yrds avg). He also scored three times on kickoff returns. Over all, he passed the 100 yard mark 12 times in 23 games including two +200 yard outings. Tampa Bay picked Hall up as a undrafted free agent on May 1, 2006, but was waived at the end of July. Chicago signed him in August but waived him on Sept. 1. Denver signed Hall Nov. 15th of last year and he spent the last half of 2006 on the practise squad.

While Travis Henry seems to have the starting tailback position locked up, look for him to push Mike Bell and the rest of the RB’s.

Roderick Rogers was a two-year captain at Stephenson High School in Stone Mountain, GA. There Rogers posted 261 tackles, 13 interceptions, four forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries. He then spent three years as a starter at Wisconsin, where he played 42 career games (26 starts), compiling 99 tackles (66 solo), one fumble recovery, five interceptions (138 yds.) and 21 passes defensed. He received second-team All-Big Ten Conference accolades in each of his final two seasons at Wisconsin. As a senior in 2006, Rogers started all 13 games and registered 36 tackles to go along with two interceptions.

I have lived in both Tampa, FL and Atlanta, GA — So I could claim both these guys as home-town favorites, but the truth is I didn’t know either one until they were added to the Broncos roster. I think the real reason I like them is that neither one was drafted, and both come from smaller schools. Pulling for the underdog is always fun. Heck, I think that’s part of being a Denver Broncos fan. We pull for the underdogs, because we WERE underdogs for so long!

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So, of all the mostly unknown players we’ve added to the roster this off-season who are you watching this year?

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A word about Brandon Marshall

May 18, 2007

Brandon Marshall, like many of our younger broncos, is expected to step up – not only into a starting position but also a leadership role. While Marshall ran with the first team this week during “Quarterback Camp,” 2007 has hit Marshall with not only losses of fellow teammates Darrent Williams and Damien Nash but also a run in with the law.

Marshall was the only member of the Broncos to be present at both the night club last visited by Darrent Williams on News Year’s Eve and the charity basketball event that Damien Nash organized and participated in prior to his death. For many, it seemed like Marshall’s off-season couldn’t get any worse — but then it did. On March 26th, Brandon was arrested on a false-imprisonment charge following a verbal altercation with his girlfriend. With the league clamping down on bad behavior, it seemed a very untimely situation.

Now, however, Marshall must put all of that behind him so that he can concentrate on scoring the #2 wide receiver spot across from Javon Walker. Marshall doesn’t plan to forget either his fallen teammates or his brush with the law. Rather he must learn from them and move on.

“I’ve definitely grown up. It’s sad to say, but sometimes you have to bump your head or go through some things to actually learn. So I’m glad that it happened now rather than down the road in my career. And I can guarantee that I’ll be on top of everything from here on out.”

–Brandon Marshall 5/17/07

Rocky Mountain New Story

LongmontFYI.com Story

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News from Dove Valley – Notes and Info

May 17, 2007

As expected, with the commencement of Denver’s first OTA days, we once again have news and info flowing out of Dove Valley! Here are some things of interest – in no particular order.

Enjoy!

Photos from Mason’s Morsels: Day One, Day Two

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Denver’s missing some of their leaders from last year. Along with departed 2006 defensive team captain Al Wilson, offensive captain Rod Smith won’t be participating in drills during this week’s “Quarterback Camp.” Off-season hip surgery has kept him off the field, but not out of work. He has been working out (in rehab) at Dove Valley and at the practices talking and encouraging the players. He reports that his recovery is ahead of schedule.

“I’m just going day by day. I can’t even jog right now, but you know what? Next week, I might be (able to). The body is weird, man. Everybody’s body is different so you can’t put together a schedule and say, ‘You’re ready by this day.’ I wish we would know that.”

— Rod Smith 5/17/07

“Rod is a competitor; he’ll get out here as soon as he can. We’re hoping to have him out by the start of training camp. That’s our goal – that the first time we start (regular) practices, he’s ready to go.”

— Mike Shanahan 5/16/07

Video on DenverBroncos.com

Full Story on Andrew Mason’s Blog

Story from Rocky Mountain News

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So, how are the new leaders doing?

Well, all the talk around Dove Valley is how much the play book will change with strong-armed Jay Cutler behind center. While that makes great water-cooler material, I would seriously doubt Mike Shanahan will be throwing away Denver’s ‘establish the run first’ offensive strategy just because Cutler can throw down field. With that said, I’m sure their will be less emphasis on bootlegs and more deep passes called this year.

“I don’t want to take anything away from Jake Plummer, because he won 70 percent of our games and he did a lot of great things when he was here. But it’s a new era, and we have a quarterback with different skills.”

— Mike Shanahan 5/16/07

And what does Jay have to say? Cutler says he feel loose and comfortable at QB now. In fact, this year instead of learning from Jake, he’s the one teaching the system to new backup QB Patrick Ramsey.

Another new leader, DJ Williams, assumed his new role as Middle Linebacker… and that includes the role of warm-up leader. Starting off with the rookie Moss and then moving quickly to the entertaining antics of David Kircus. Williams did a fairly decent job — let’s hope his move to the middle of the defense is as smooth.

DenverBroncos.com story & video on Williams

Denver Post Story on the NEW play book for Cutler

Andrew Mason’s Blog entry with lots of pictures from camp

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Denver’s Travis Henry was listed as 12th in Michael Harmon’s recent FoxSports.com article on the best backs for 2007. No surprise that LaDainian Tomlinson tops the list, but Travis at 12th?!? I would be stunned and wildly disappointed if Henry isn’t in the top 5 this year – if he wins the starting job outright.

“Henry was impressive in his efforts for the Titans last year, averaging 4.5 yards per carry with seven touchdowns. Some detractors point to his age as a negative. They neglect to factor in that Henry has carried the ball a total of 452 times over the past three seasons.”

–Michael Harmon 5/16/07

FULL STORY

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Injury updates were made today on a some of our guys. Offensive tackle Matt Lepsis (knee), safety Sam Brandon (knee) and wide receiver Brandon Stokley (Achilles tendon) will miss “Quarterback Camp.” The good news is that all three are on schedule to return fully by the regular season. Also, safety Nick Ferguson (knee) and running back Cecil Sapp (fractured fibula) have returned from their season-ending injuries in 2006 and will participated in all scheduled OTA’s.

 

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Domonique Foxworth posted again on his official blog. Mostly about his recent off-field charity work with the John Lynch Foundation and his desire to work on the Darrent Williams Teen Center.

“I welcome the challenge of giving that 100% positive role model to young kids. And not only being a role model, it’s going out and participating hands-on. Not only just giving money and hoping they do the right thing with it. You’ve got to go in there and work with it. …this Darrent Williams Teen Center is going to be my new passion, I think. I’m really excited about that.”

— Domonique Foxworth 5/17/07

FULL POST

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Howard Griffith, Denver’s Super Bowl FB, will be providing the color commentary for University of Illinois football games broadcast on the Illinios Sports Network. Griffith is a Chicago native and set the NCAA record for touchdowns in a game with eight against Southern Illinois in 1990.

“He and his wife had already made a decision to return to Chicago from the Denver area, wanting for their two sons to be closer to their grandparents. When he learned of this opportunity in December, he decided to pursue it and push hard for the chance.”

— Mark Tupper 5/16/07

FULL STORY