Posted Sun Aug 12th by Jon Heath
For veteran cornerback Champ Bailey, the 2012 preseason will be anything but easy, even if he does feel like he is 23 years old again. The Denver Broncos‘ exhibition schedule features several of the greatest wide receivers to ever play the game.
Bailey will be busy, as can be observed by viewing the Broncos’ preseason schedule, seen below:
|2012 Denver Broncos Preseason|
|1||AUG 9th||6:30 PM||KTVD-TV||@ Chicago Bears|
|2||AUG 18th||7:00 PM||KUSA-TV||Seattle Seahawks|
|3||AUG 26th||2:00 PM||FOX (NTV)||San Francisco 49ers|
|4||AUG 30th||8:00 PM||KTVD-TV||@ Arizona Cardinals|
Bailey, 34, needs two more Pro Bowl appearances to break an NFL record for the most selections of a single player in the history of the game. With 50 career interceptions and countless accolades, Bailey’s credentials have Hall of Fame stamped all over them.
Here’s a look at what the combined credentials of the four receivers Bailey will be tasked with covering during the preseason: 22 Pro Bowls, 3 Super Bowl appearances and countless receiving records. Those are the numbers of Brandon Marshall, Terrell Owens, Randy Moss and Larry Fitzgerald, all of whom Bailey has or will cover in the weeks leading up to the regular season.
In Week 1, Marshall caught one pass for a gain of four yards. The last time Marshall and Bailey matched up in the regular season, Brandon caught six passes for 61 yards but did not manage to score. All things considered, Bailey held him in check.
In Week 2, T.O. will face off against Bailey for the second time in the past three preseasons. In their previous three regular season meetings, Owens has caught six passes for 189 yards and one score while Bailey has defended three passes and intercepted another. Owens’ one fluke 91-yard touchdown catch in 2005 was the only time he has gotten the best of Bailey.
In Week 3, Bailey will likely be charged with covering Moss, who signed with the 49ers earlier in the offseason. In five career regular season games against Bailey, Moss has caught 17 passes for 271 yards and two scores. In those same five games, Bailey recorded 22 tackles and recorded an interception. Moss made a few big plays against Bailey while with New England but has not routinely had success against him.
In Week 4, Bailey will close out the preseason against Fitzgerald. Bailey and Fitzgerald have matched up twice before in the regular season, with Fitzgerald catching eleven passes for 149 yards and no scores. In those two games, Bailey recorded 6 tackles and two interceptions. Viewed as one of the best wide receivers in the game, Fitzgerald has failed to get into the end zone when covered by Champ.
While theses four preseason match-ups will be tough, Bailey is familiar with all of the receivers and is certainly capable of covering the best wide outs in the game. Watching these Pro Bowlers and future Hall of Famers go at it in the coming weeks will be fun, regardless of whether it’s only for a series or two per game.