Devoe fighting for a Spot

The battle at wide receiver is a fierce one for the Denver Broncos. With the top three positions all, but filled by Rod Smith, Ashley Lelie, and Darius Watts, there remains a log jam for the final two or three spots. Todd Devoe is fighting for one of these.

On any morning at the Denver Bronco's training camp at Dove Valley, you can look up at the clear blue sky and find hawks circling around, almost like they are waiting for the weak to slow down just enough to pick them off. When you take a look around camp there's a battle for a starting job in almost every position; and the ones who don't make the cut are swept away, almost as if they slowed down and the circling hawks got them.

One of the positions where there is a fierce battle is the wide receiver position. With the top three positions all, but filled by Rod Smith, Ashley Lelie, and Darius Watts, there remains a log jam for the final two or three spots. Jerry Rice was personally asked by Shanahan not to quit; that basically means there are only two spots not filled, and that's if the Broncos decide to carry six wide receivers. And since they might carry three kickers, three quarter backs, and enough defensive lineman to break through the Great Wall of China if need be, some positions will have to sacrifice spots. The wide receiver position is one of those spots.

Todd Devoe is one of the remaining five receivers fighting for the chance to wear the orange and blue. Devoe was an undrafted free agent out of Central Missouri State University, where in his senior year he led the team in receiving with 58 catches, 1045 yards, and 12 touchdowns in 2002. After college, Dovoe spent time on Miami, Tennessee, and Baltimore's practice squads. Devoe also spent some time in what is the NFL's developmental league, NFL Europe. Devoe played for the Cologne Centurions in 2004, where he set team records in career touchdowns, individual touchdowns, and most points in a single game.

Devoe, a big guy at 6'2", 189lbs, fits the trendy mold in NFL wide receivers, big and tall. He doesn't have blazing speed, but in camp has demonstrated the ability to catch the ball consistently. When Devoe was asked how he thought he was performing in camp he said, "I'm real hard on myself, the more I look at myself the more improvement I know I need." When also asked what he thought he needed to do to make the team he responded, "I just need to go out and play football."

Most of the experts think that Devoe is a long shot to make the team. He has to show he's better than Triandos Luke, a 6th round draft pick by the Broncos in 2004; Charlie Adams, a guy who was with the team last year; and two first year players in, B.J. Johnson and Romar Crenshaw.

Hopefully for Devoe's sake, when he looks to the sky after the cuts are made, it's to see what the weather's going to be like, and not to see whether or not he needs the nearest gopher hole to hide in.

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