Broncos Update Insider - Monday, July 25, 2005

Defensive end Ebenezer Ekuban (in photo) wants to prove the Browns wrong for letting him and his teammates go. Read about Ekuban and all the other latest news in this week's Broncos Update Insider as Denver prepares to open training camp on July 29.

Denver Broncos defensive back Jeremy LeSueur was a third-round pick last year, and his rookie year was a disaster.

He had a poor training camp and right before the season started he went on injured reserve for a hernia injury he needed surgery to fix. Then this offseason Denver drafted three cornerbacks with its first three picks.

LeSueur has been working at safety for most of the offseason, but could still play cornerback if needed. His size and ability to cover makes him a darkhorse candidate to be Denver's nickel cornerback.

LeSueur said the coaches told him to study the position in the offseason so he's ready to compete for the spot in training camp.

"It's intriguing," defensive coordinator Larry Coyer said.

LeSueur said his struggles in camp last year were because of injuries. He had the hernia injury, and he strained his hip flexor at the combine and then again at his pro day workout. He wasn't in great shape going into camp because his injuries kept him from working out like he wanted to.

LeSueur played safety and cornerback at the University of Michigan, and said he's willing to play whatever position Denver needs him at. He faces less competition at safety, considering the Broncos lost Kenoy Kennedy this offseason and didn't add any safeties in free agency or the draft.

LeSueur will have to perform well during training camp after his mediocre camp last year, but LeSueur said he feels confident going into camp because he's feeling healthy.

"I'm feeling really good right now," LeSueur said. "I haven't been this healthy since I've been here."

CAMP CALENDAR: Camp opens July 29 for rookies and veterans; the Broncos will hold joint practices with the Texans in Houston Aug. 10-11; camp closes on Aug. 18.

NOTES, QUOTES

--The Broncos don't plan on using many 3-4 defensive looks this season, although they looked into it this offseason.

"A little bit, not much," defensive coordinator Larry Coyer said.

"It will factor in. We got pieces and bits." --The Denver Broncos let safety Kenoy Kennedy sign with Detroit when Kennedy was an unrestricted free agent this offseason. When the bidding got too high, the Broncos were content to let Kennedy go and turn to Nick Ferguson to replace him.

"A lot of times you're looking at the salary cap on this kind of player and you're trying to decide where the money is best spent," Broncos coach Mike Shanahan said. "Even though we would have liked to have Kenoy we have the utmost confidence in Nick Ferguson."

--New Broncos defensive tackle Gerard Warren said he's excited to be with a team that has a chance to got deep in the playoffs after some disappointing years in Cleveland.

"I was ecstatic once we got the deal finished because I was like 'I can play for a team that not only wants to win, but win the Super Bowl,'" Warren said. "In Cleveland we were always focused on winning this game or just trying to be good or making it respectable."

QUOTE TO NOTE: "I can definitely tell you that coming from Cleveland, those guys want to prove the Browns wrong for letting them go." -- DE Ebenezer Ekuban on he and his three former Browns teammates who were acquired by the Broncos this offseason.

STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL

The Broncos will have plenty of defensive linemen coming to camp. They had 13 linemen with significant NFL experience coming to camp, and made it 14 when they traded cornerback Willie Middlebrooks to San Francisco for defensive end John Engelberger.

Even before the Broncos acquired Engelberger, defensive end Trevor Pryce was wondering which linemen would make the cut.

"I sitting there today trying to figure it out," Pryce said during team's July minicamp. "I was saying 'I think he's on board, I think I'm going to be on the team but I'm not sure, this dude is good.' I think it's the deepest we've ever been as far as talent."

UNIT-BY-UNIT ANALYSIS

QUARTERBACK: Starter -- Jake Plummer. Backups -- Danny Kanell, Matt Mauck, Bradlee Van Pelt.

RUNNING BACKS: Starters -- RB Tatum Bell, FB Kyle Johnson. Backups -- RB Mike Anderson, RB Quentin Griffin, RB Ron Dayne, RB Maurice Clarett, FB Cecil Sapp.

TIGHT ENDS: Starter -- Jeb Putzier. Backups -- Patrick Hape, Stephen Alexander, Nate Jackson, Mike Leach.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Starters -- Rod Smith, Ashley Lelie. Backups -- Darius Watts, Jerry Rice, Triandos Luke, Charlie Adams, B.J. Johnson.

OFFENSIVE LINE: Starters -- LT Matt Lepsis, LG Ben Hamilton, C Tom Nalen, RG Cooper Carlisle, RT George Foster. Backups -- T Anthony Clement, T Dwayne Carswell, T Cornell Green, C Josh Sewell, C/G Chris Myers, G Tim Stuber, G Cameron Spikes, G Tyson Clabo.

DEFENSIVE LINE: Starters -- SDE Courtney Brown, DT Gerard Warren, DT Mario Fatafehi, WDE Trevor Pryce. Backups -- DE Ebenezer Ekuban, DE Anton Palepoi, DT Monsanto Pope, DT Dorsett Davis, DT Luther Elliss, DE Marco Coleman, DE Chukie Nwokorie, DT Michael Myers, DE John Engelberger, DE Raylee Johnson.

LINEBACKERS: Starters -- WLB Ian Gold, MLB Al Wilson, SLB D.J. Williams. Backups: MLB Patrick Chukwurah, SLB/MLB Terry Pierce, OLB Jashon Sykes, MLB Keith Burns, OLB Louis Green, OLB Markus Steele.

DEFENSIVE BACKS: Starters -- CB Champ Bailey, CB Lenny Walls, SS Nick Ferguson, FS John Lynch. Backups -- CB Darrent Williams, CB Karl Paymah, CB Domonique Foxworth, CB Roc Alexander, CB Jeff Shoate, S Sam Brandon, S Chris Young, S Jeremy LeSueur, S/CB Brandon Browner.

SPECIAL TEAMS: K Jason Elam, P Todd Sauerbrun, KR/PR Darrent Williams, LS Mike Leach, LS Chris Myers, P/K Paul Ernster.

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