Players to watch entering training camp

Denver Broncos defensive end Jarvis Moss faces an important second season after his rookie year was a nightmare.

Defensive end Jarvis Moss: Moss faces an important second season after his rookie year was a nightmare. He was confident coming into his first year, saying his goal was to win the NFL defensive rookie of the year award. He didn't come close to that.

He was banged up a bit in training camp, and that carried over to the regular season. The first-round pick was used in some packages designed to take advantage of his skills, but he had little impact. He was a healthy scratch in Denver's seventh game, then suffered a fractured right fibula in practice and was done for the year. He had one sack as a rookie.

Moss expects a lot more in his second year. He said he was feeling completely healed in April, and was a full participant in the offseason camps. Still, Moss has a long way to go in training camp to win a starting job. The Broncos need some contribution from Moss, even if that's as a situational pass rusher.

Linebacker D.J. Williams: Finally, Williams is back at his natural position of weak-side linebacker. After a fantastic rookie season he spent most of his next two seasons on the strong side to make room for Ian Gold, a move that is questionable in retrospect. Gold was cut after a poor 2007 season and hasn't been picked up. Williams wasn't a huge factor for the Broncos' defense on the strong side.

Williams was moved to middle linebacker last year to fill the hole created when Al Wilson was cut. He piled up a lot of tackles but didn't make many plays. Williams said he was getting used to playing the middle, but he's fine moving back to the weak side. He'll have a lot of freedom to make plays, as he did as a rookie.

Center Tom Nalen: The Broncos are a different offense with an effective Nalen in the middle. He is perfect for Denver's zone-blocking scheme, but he is 37 years old and has had two surgeries in the last year.

He missed most of last season after tearing his biceps muscle in Denver's fifth game. The Broncos were happy with his progress from that injury, but in the offseason he had arthroscopic surgery to clean out some cartilage. Nalen is tough, so the Broncos figured he would be ready by training camp.

Denver traded Chris Myers, who filled in at center for Nalen last year, to Houston. They did sign Casey Wiegmann to back up Nalen this season.



Got something to say - Voice your opinion on any one of our
Broncos Update Community Forums
< br>







Mile High Huddle Top Stories