Posted Tue Aug 28th by Monty
I suppose the Todd Sauerbrun vs. Paul Ernster debate is now officially over, although it didn’t end the way I would have preferred. In order to reach the league-mandated 75-man roster today, the Broncos are expected to release Punter Paul Ernster and safety Quentin Harris. 23 more cuts are expected in the coming week as the team is required to reach its 53-man roster by this Saturday, September 1st.
None of the cuts have been officially announced, but as these players did not participate in practice today there is wide speculation that they will be the remaining two players the Broncos must release to reach the 75-man limit.
I have mixed feelings about losing Ernster – I applauded the move of releasing Sauerbrun last year after his 4-game suspension, based on the great work by Ernster. But, as many fans know, his game seemed to fall off last year after the competition wasn’t there nipping him at the butt. When Sauerbrun was brought back, I had said this would be Ernster’s last chance to earn (no pun intended) and keep his job. And he did that – just look at this statistical breakdown courtesy Andrew Mason:
AVERAGE LENGTH: Ernster 72.4 yards, Sauerbrun 69.5 yards (note — I counted the actual distance of Ernster’s game-opening wallop against Cleveland, which was approximately 85 yards, as it landed five yards behind the touchline in the back of the end zone).
TOUCHBACK PERCENTAGE: Ernster 50.0 percent, Sauerbrun 50.0 percent.
AVERAGE DRIVE-START POSITION AFTER KICKOFFS: Ernster DEN 25.5; Sauerbrun DEN 26.0.
SHORTEST KICKOFFS: Ernster 63 yards, Sauerbrun 61 yards.
AVERAGE LENGTH: Ernster 45.0 yards, Sauerbrun 40.4 yards
NET AVERAGE: Ernster 41.7, Sauerbrun 33.3
PUNTS INSIDE THE 20: Ernster 3, Sauerbrun 1.
TOUCHBACKS: Ernster 0, Sauerbrun 2.
SHORTEST PUNTS: Ernster 33 yards, Sauerbrun 15.
As you can tell, Ernster has plain DOMINATED this preseason. But, when it comes to regular season the Broncos should have more faith in Sauerbrun, bottom line. I had a feeling the move was coming no matter how well Ernster played, but expect some team to snatch up Ernster right away, even today possibly.
I’ll be posting my thoughts on every one of these cuts, and the ones I expect as the week rolls on… sorry no Top 10 today, need 28 hours and only got 24…