Now that the draft is over, general managers across the league are combing through their rosters and assessing their offseason additions. In Denver, John Elway has to be feeling pretty good.
Still, while DeMarcus Ware, T.J. Ward and Bradley Roby are nice, most of us are forgetting about the most important additions of the Broncos offseason: the return of the injured.
The Broncos were demolished in the Super Bowl. We know that, and it still hurts, but we underestimate the how impressive it was that the Broncos even made it there in the first place. Sure, Peyton Manning is an all-important football god, who can make even the worst team a championship contender, but he still needs help.
Behind Manning, Ryan Clady and Von Miller are very likely the Broncos two best players. In fact, they are probably in the top-three at their position in the league. That being said, if you were to tell me before the season that the Broncos were going to go 13-3 and go to the Super Bowl with Clady and Miller combining for 10 games all season, I would say you’re crazy.
But that’s not all. Entering the playoffs, the Broncos had six starters out for the season with an injury – Derek Wolfe, Kevin Vickerson, Chris Harris, Rahim Moore, Clady and Miller.
To be fair, every team faces the injury bug at some point in the season, but the Broncos had come down with the injury plague. Players weren’t just tearing ACLs or breaking legs. The Broncos were losing guys to injuries we’ve never heard of.
Wolfe was placed on injured reserve after suffering seizures, thanks to a condition nobody has yet to explain, and Moore suffered an injury to his leg that doctors say is only seen in victims of massive car accidents and roadside bombings.
So, as the Broncos organization and their fans begin to look forward to next year, we can’t forget about these silent additions. The 2014 Broncos will look massively different from the 2013 team. On the defense alone, there could be as many as nine, at least seven, new starters from the Super Bowl.
Ware, Ward, Roby and Talib will be great additions, but it was Miller, Vickerson, Harris and Moore that helped make the Broncos the second best defense in the NFL just two years ago.
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