Broncos News Blogs - Saturday, April 22

Read the latest news stories sbout the Denver Broncos.

NFL Europe fits Duke fine - Denver Post – Bill Williamson
04/21/2006 - Wesley Duke admits it. He wasn't thrilled when the Broncos suggested late last season that he go to NFL Europe to hone his football skills. Midway through his European experience, however, Duke is happy to be abroad. "I have gotten to see and experience things I never would otherwise," the tight end said from Hamburg, Germany this week. "And the main reason why I'm here, football, has been great. I'm learning and playing, and we know that's why I'm here." Duke has caught five passes, including a 26-yard touchdown, in five games for the Hamburg Sea Devils. Duke said he is playing the second and fourth quarters of every game. Duke was on the Broncos' roster last year after making the transition from college basketball player at Mercer.

Brown feels healthy, at home with the Broncos - Rocky Mountain News – Lee Rasizer
April 21, 2006 - Courtney Brown's past off-seasons can be catalogued as much by the body parts he rehabilitated as the years themselves. Knee and ankle work consumed down time in 2002. More knee recovery followed in 2003. Getting his biceps and foot right took up much of the past two springs. But Brown, a Denver Broncos defensive end, is experiencing something relatively unique the past few weeks -- he has only had to deal with general body soreness. There have been no trips to the surgeon, no wiling away the hours in the training room. It's get work done and go home. And he's enjoying the truncated schedule as a full participant in the team's off-season conditioning program.

Broncos trade away 22nd pick to 49ers - Rocky Mountain News – Lee Rasizer
April 20, 2006 - The Denver Broncos continue to treat their highest draft picks like they're involved in a game of hot potato. The franchise on Wednesday sent the No. 22 pick, the second of its two first-round selections, to the San Francisco 49ers for picks in the second (37th overall) and third (68th) rounds. The move gives the Broncos four picks April 29, adding to their existing slots at Nos. 15 and 61 in the first two rounds. It also expands their overall haul to nine selections in the draft. But to underscore the Broncos' flurry of activity in dealing their recent draft assets, consider that among their first five selections currently, which now includes the Nos. 15, 37, 61, 68 and 119 spots, only their own late second-round pick, at No. 61, didn't originate elsewhere.

Lelie's absence may lead to trade - Rocky Mountain News – Lee Rasizer
April 20, 2006 - The NFL draft notwithstanding, how the Denver Broncos ultimately address their receiving position figures to be most intriguing. The Broncos are considered thin behind starters Rod Smith and Ashley Lelie, and now even that delicate balance has been thrown into question. Lelie has kept a low profile since meeting with coach Mike Shanahan at the Pro Bowl in February and voicing his displeasure about the franchise's flirtation with then-free agent Terrell Owens. The session apparently did little to ease Lelie's mind, given his absence from the team's off-season strength and conditioning program. He instead is working out in Phoenix. And now, because of Lelie's decision to train elsewhere, the displeasure appears to be mutual.

Search for talent sends NFL scouts to the hardwood - Denver Post – Bill Williamson
04/21/2006 - Joe Linta was watching the pride of his home state - Connecticut basketball - on television when he had a vision inspired by a recent NFL trend. The football agent saw star tight end Antonio Gates in the form of the Huskies' bruising sixth man, Ed Nelson. Once the Huskies basketball season ended, Linta made a pitch to Nelson: How would he like to be an NFL tight end? Armed with recent examples while taking notice of Nelson's 6-foot-8, 265-pound frame, Linta had a sale.

Together Again - Denver – Andrew Mason
Friday, April 14, 2006 - As if there weren't enough familiar faces around for Ebenezer Ekuban. He arrived in Denver last year with three fellow former Browns defensive linemen and assistant coach Andre Patterson, who worked with him in both Dallas and Cleveland. He then notched four sacks in a rotational role last season that saw him come off the bench through most of the year, starting four of 16 games. Then the Broncos signed defensive end Kenard Lang a month ago -- bringing in the man who lined up on the opposite side of Ekuban in 2004 -- their one year together in Cleveland. The duo flourished together, and Ekuban posted a career-high eight sacks that season. "We fed off each other because we were competitive," Ekuban recalled. "Week in and week out we'd go in the film room and find out who had the most tackles and assists and sacks." The two had a vocal but conegnial rivalry.

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