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Published on 08/10/2009 at Mon Aug 10 09:08.
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As is my annual tradition, it’s time to select my favorite lesser-known Broncos.

It’s about this time each year, that I find a few players buried deep in Denver’s roster that I begin championing to friends and family. Over the year’s only a couple have risen to the starting line up while most turn out to be duds — and are quietly sent packing. However, as a fan of the Broncos I feel like pulling for the underdog is as natural as expecting ole #7 to pull out a win in a late 4th quarter game on ESPN Classics. So I’m proud to have promoted the ‘Free Thump Belton Movement‘ and cheer for characters like Kevin Kasper and Nate Jackson. They might have been deep on the depth chart and no one might own their jerseys, but they’re also Denver Broncos. And as a die-hard fan, I want to support the ‘little guys’ as well as the marquee players!

Here’s a look at some of my choices from the last few years:

1999-2000 – 6th round pick, TE Desmond Clark

2001 – 6th round pick, WR Kevin Kasper

2002-03 – FB Reuben Droughns and Safety Sam Brandon

2003-04 – WR/TE Nate Jackson and RB/FB Cecil Sapp

2005 – QB Bradlee Van Pelt and CB Darrent Williams

2006 – WR David Kircus, RB Mike Bell and Safety Hamza Abdullah

2007 – RB Andre Hall and Safety Roderick Rogers

Last year, I picked Special Teamer Jamie Winborn which helped our team out quite a bit last year. I also was a big early supporter of Peyton Hillis (as my boss is a HUGE hogs fan and I had seen some tape on him). Lastly, and with a disclaimer that a 2nd rounder shouldn’t be considered lesser-known, I expressed my fandom for undersized Eddie Royal.

Line Break

So, on to this year!

First up is Chris Baker. I’m partial to undrafted guys and good sports (anyone that’s attempted a dance-off with Miles has to be a pretty good sport). I’m pulling for Baker as a developing talent and I’m looking forward to seeing him play this preseason. I actually have three D-linemen I’m personally cheering for this preseason. Rookies Chris Baker and Rulon Davis and another D-lineman I adopted as a fav last year after seeing him play in the 2008 preseason — Nic Clemons. Nic and Rulon are almost back from their camp injuries, so I’m looking forward to seeing both of them contribute in these early games as well.

On offense, I like WR Kenny McKinley. As a fifth rounder he might not be Crabtree, but he’s shown some good things in camp so far and I can’t wait to see him in game-type situations this weekend. I also like G Seth Olsen. He just seems like a good guy and I’m a sucker for mid-western O-linemen.

These are my picks to pull for this preseason… What players on the bubble or deep on the depth chart are you watching? After the starters get pulled from these early preseason games, which 2nd, 3rd and 4th stringers are you most interested in?

  • flbronc

    mckinley is no crabtree, but he’s signed…

    hopefully tony carter gets some pt in the preseason- if he doesn’t the writing is on the wall for him. i’d like to see some carlton powell (he’s not a rookie though) and that pedeslecaux or however you spell his name.

    on offense i want to see if gaffney is all that he’s being talked up as, and see if travis shelton is the burner everybody talks about.

  • Garrett Barnes

    Darius Walker and David Bruton I think will both be big players for us in small ways lol. Should be fun to watch.

  • broncogeoff81

    He is on the bubble and everything, but I really like Jarvis Moss. Once he gets a few things straightened out upstairs, he could be dominant.

  • broncoNM

    The 2 lesser known broncos I am pulling for are LBs… lee robinson and woodyard (he may b too known to fit in this category)

  • Kyle

    broncoNM – I like Robinson too. Got a few words with him after Thursday’s practice, will post a story in next day or two

  • broncoNM

    Nice! Cant wait to read it… camp coverage has been great! Thanks!

  • Joe

    Broncos Offense
    WR 19 E. Royal 84 B. Lloyd 11 K. McKinley 12 M. Willis
    LT 78 R. Clady 76 T. Polumbus 68 S. Bryant
    LG 50 B. Hamilton 70. S. Olsen 60 M. McChesney
    C 62 C. Wiegmann 67 K. Lichtensteiger 63 B. Schlueter
    RG 73 C. Kuper 61 M. Erickson 72 P. Murray
    RT 74 R. Harris 77 B. Gorin 71 C. Oldenburg
    TE 89 D. Graham 88 T. Scheffler 81 R. Quinn 87 J. Putzier
    85 M. Branson
    WR 14 B. Stokley 83 N. Swift 13 T. Shelton
    WR 19 J. Gaffney 15 B. Marshall 16 C. Jackson 17 C.J. Jones
    QB 8 K.Orton 2 C. Simms 3 T. Brandstater
    RB 28 C. Buckhalter 32 L. Jordan 22 P. Hillis 27 K. Moreno
    42 R. Torain
    34 D. Walker

    Broncos Defense
    DE 98 R. McBean 79 M. Thomas
    NT 91 R. Fields 75 C. Baker 97 C. Powell
    DE 90 K. Peterson 99 M. Askew 64 E. Pedescleaux 93 N. Clemons
    65 R. Davis
    OLB 57 M. Haggan 95 D. Reid 96 T. Crowder
    ILB 55 D.J. Williams 59 W. Woodyard 51 L. Robinson
    ILB 54 A. Davis 46 S. Larsen 48 B. Kelley
    OLB 92 E. Dumervil 56 R. Ayers 94 J. Moss
    LCB 24 C. Bailey 33 A. Smith 35 D.J. Johnson 40 R. Moulton
    RCB 21 A. Goodman 26 J. Williams 25 J. Bell 37 T. Carter
    SS 23 R. Hill 30 D. Bruton 36 J. Barrett
    FS 20 B. Dawkins 31 D. McBath 39 V. Fox

    Thats the Broncos First Depth Chart. I dont buy it. By week one in regular season or before, you will see Moreno starting at tailback, of course of Marshall is healthy he will start at reciever, and Ayers should be starting. I’m getting more and more excited about this season. And Moreno sounds as if he is already showin’ why he was the best runningback in the draft and at Georgie (or one of the bests there). Win or lose, at least its time for some DENVER BRONCO football!!!!
    And by the way, has anyone seen that Knowshon commercial with him on Invesco field looking for Marshall’s eye contacts that he doesnt wear? haha made me laugh

  • Ryan

    Hahaha, a Bradlee Van Pelt shout out… I loved that guy. Remember when he had that sick QB draw play? Priceless…

    I’m also pulling for Baker… my hope is that he went undrafted more for his off field/transfer/small school issues then his ability to stuff the middle. I’d also love to see Tim Crowder as the starting OLB opposite Doom/Ayers. His size, physicality, and athleticism would be extremely valuable if he found a way to get his act together after a couple rough seasons.

  • joseph

    i wanna see rulon davis dominate since well im in the corps

  • Horvil Tiki

    bradlee pelt was world beater guy in pre season. Grandfather say to buy all he card on ebay in the mint conditional. I glad I not buy they. cant sell for five cent now guy. the wait and see approach yes. I wonder how spencer larsen will can do in new lineback system. Guy say you can unleash you linebacks in three four. unleash the larsen guy. the woodard.

  • gobronx

    Amen Horvil!

  • gobronx

    David Bruton is my pick. He looks like he’ll be a stud at FS or SS for years to come.

  • Redd954

    I like Kenny from the game cocks And Shelton from temple to nice youg recievers who are rady to step on the field and make plays I lok for both to make some noise this preseason.