Everybody saw the reports during training camp.
Denver Broncos’ first-round pick Bradley Roby was struggling. He was getting burned by every receiver. Demaryius Thomas was getting past him. Wes Welker was getting by him. Even rookie Cody Latimer was catching balls on him.
Roby looked to be a bust early. And yes, it is way too early to say that but questions were starting to loom.
But on Saturday, Roby trotted out there with the starters. He lined up next to fellow starter Aqib Talib.
The Texans had no problem going right at Roby. He was covering superstar Andre Johnson. The rookie ended up making four tackles in the game and knocked down two passes. He showed the physical part of his game that the Broncos liked when they drafted him.
“I went into the game knowing that they’re going to try me a little bit, just being a rookie and going against Andre. I felt it coming,” he told sww.denverbroncos.com/news-and-blogs/article-1/Roby-impresses-vs-Texans/f692529c-2e55-4d3e-b99f-ef5d098ebe4c” target=”_blank”>DenverBroncos.com. “I just wanted to be on my A-game and I think I did that.”
Once the season kicks off on September 7, Roby will not be the starter. Once Chris Harris gets clearance to practice again he will be the other starter. And at this point, Kayvon Webster is slated in as the nickel back due to his strong camp. Webster returned to practice on Monday.
That leaves Roby sitting at the fourth corner spot. In today’s NFL with all the passing, Roby will see the field plenty. But he is a first-round draft pick so he needs to be more than a fourth corner.
“I’m playing well right now, just keeping the momentum going. It’s a process. You can’t expect to come in and be Darrelle Revis from day one. It’s a slow, steady climb to the top and I’m willing to put the work in.”
He won’t take Talib’s spot after the big contract Talib signed in the offseason. Harris could be due for a new contract but the Broncos are very high on him and want to keep him around.
Roby’s best chance to shine is by pushing Webster for that nickel spot. Harris always considered himself a starter when he played as the third corner. He is right. Those players are on the field all the time.
A rookie cornerback always has a big learning curve. Roby is not covering receivers like he did in college. Most of these guys are the real deal on the field in the NFL.
All the skills are there for Roby. He is good sized at 5’11” and 192 pounds. Roby has shown his ability to tackle and doesn’t seem scared to try and make a big play. He just missed an interception on Saturday.
It is tough to not expect a lot out of a first-round pick. Roby was drafted in that round for a reason. He is coming along and the Broncos are preaching patience. They are hoping he develops playing with Talib and Harris.
Roby will see a lot of time on the field and may have a really big chance to shine during Thursday’s preseason finale. Roby won’t be a starter but is set up to make an impact.
Like this? Click here to read what Terrance Knighton thinks of people calling the Broncos soft.