2014 Pulitzer Prize Winner

Broncos training camp — Monday’s a wrap

Published: August 5, 2013, 1:58 pm, by Paul Klee

Soldiers                              Wesley

Fight!

The number of shoving matches and salty words increases with each day of training camp.

This isn’t a bad thing. A coach once told me, “If your guys aren’t fighting, your guys aren’t trying.”

After Sunday’s off day, the Broncos were back at it this morning at Dove Valley. Their ninth practice of training camp had a few arguments on the field. Linebacker Damien Holmes and tight end Jake O’Connell traded helmet slaps in one skirmish. Early in 11-on-11 drills, the moving pile of linemen had a disagreement, with roughly one ton of human involved.

So, nothing major.

But it keeps things interesting.

Here’s the rundown…

Play of the day: Bubba Caldwell made a difference today. The sixth-year player, who played in eight games last season, made several plays at wide receiver. One of those was a deep catch from Brock Osweiler in one-on-one drills.

Also, in the 2-minute offense, Matt Prater booted a (roughly) 53-yard field goal. But that came after the defense forced Peyton Manning’s offense to stall.

Newsworthy: Right tackle Orlando Franklin left practice with a hip injury.

One more example why training camp is too long.

Louis Vasquez, the big (literally) free agent stolen from the Chargers, took over Franklin’s spot at right tackle.

“We feel good about where we are on the offensive line,” John Fox told media after pracice.

The untrained eye saw: An obviously improving backup quarterback. I like Brock Osweiler’s game. I like his size, I like his personality, I like his arm.

How will Osweiler hold up with “starting quarterback” next to his name? Hopefully the Broncos won’t find out for another 3-4 years. For now, the Arizona State product (and former Gonzaga University basketball recruit) is showing off his big arm and able legs in his second training camp. And he looks good.

“I can’t even tell you how much better I feel about this (training camp) compared to last year,” Osweiler told me after practice.

I’ll have more on Osweiler leading into Thursday’s preseason game at San Francisco.

Notable: Don’t tell Johnny Football, but one thing the Broncos do very well: Sign autographs.

That’s especially true when there is military involved. Eric Decker and Demaryius Thomas (above, left) spent time with a group of soldiers after practice today. Broncos legend Randy Gradishar introduced them. And these aren’t hit-and-run, good-to-see-you conversations. The players actually take an interest in the veterans and active-duty officers.

Good on you, Broncos.

What’s next: The Broncos practice from 8:50-11:30 a.m. Tuesday. The workout is open to the public.

Twitter: @Klee_Gazette