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Posts tagged with "Demaryius Thomas"

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Wide receivers Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders certainly have been involved in the Denver Broncos‘ offense this season.

The Broncos would like for them to advance a level beyond that, however.

Thomas has been targeted 30 times and Sanders 34 times in four games. No other player on the roster has more than 16 targets.

But the Broncos’ top two receivers have combined for two touchdown receptions in four games — both by Sanders.

They have received plenty of attention from opposing defenses — so much so, that even as the Broncos pound away with the league’s No. 3 rushing attack at 143 yards per game, those defenses have continued to keep extra players in coverage, essentially deciding they’d rather take their chances against the Broncos’ running backs rather than let Broncos quarterback Trevor Siemianpick away at them with Thomas and Sanders in full flight.

Or as coach Vance Joseph has put it: “When you’re facing a lot of Cover 2 or shell coverage, No. 88 [Thomas] and No. 10 [Sanders] are really taken out of the ballgame.”

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Denver Broncos inside linebacker Todd Davis, ...

The Broncos’ starting defense hasn’t faced much of a challenge from opponents this preseason. On Saturday night, the biggest hits Denver’s defensive players leveled were against each other.

Linebacker Todd Davis and cornerback Aqib Talib engaged in a heated pushing and shouting in the first half at Sports Authority Field at Mile High, an argument that extended from the field onto the sideline.

The altercation began when Broncos and Packers players were shoving after a play. As Talib attempted to pull Davis away from a Packers player, Davis took exception. He removed his helmet and shoved it into Talib’s chest. The two traded shoves before teammates intervened. Their argument moved to the bench as they continued to yell at one another. Broncos coach Vance Joseph intervened and attempted to calm Davis.

On the next defensive series, Talib returned to the field and Davis remained on the sideline until returning to the game midway through the series.

Players downplayed the incident after the game.

“Just a miscommunication, man,” Talib said. “I was just trying to calm him down. Nothing serious. We’re all good.”

“It’s just two competitive guys trying to win games,” nose tackle Domata Peko said. “It’s just that competitive nature coming out. It’s no big deal. That kind of stuff happens all the time in the NFL.”

Broncos injured. Wide receiver Demaryius Thomas (groin) and defensive end Zach Kerr (knee) were both injured in the first quarter and did not return to the game.

Safety Will Parks suffered a hip injury in the second quarter that knocked him out of the game.

Thomas appeared to suffer his injury on a third-down pass from Trevor Siemian that sailed over the outstretched wide receiver and into the arms of Green Bay safety Kentrell Brice, who returned the interception to the Denver 2-yard line.

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ENGLEWOOD, CO – AUGUST 03: Denver Broncos quarterback Paxton Lynch #12 at Dove Valley August 03, 2017. (Photo by Andy Cross/The Denver Post)

Lynch will get his chance to start with the first-team offense Saturday in San Francisco

Broncos cornerback Bradley Roby has said that mistakes on the field, when the lights are on and every play matters, “will eat you alive.”

The big plays, the game-winning scoop-and-scores, the interceptions, the pick-sixes — they’re nice. But the euphoria pales in comparison to the sinking feeling in your stomach when you know you messed up.

Moving on to the next play, the next series, the next game is a mind game. For second-year quarterback Paxton Lynch, it’s one he’s still learning to navigate.

The 2016 first-round pick who started two games last year will open Saturday night’s preseason game at San Francisco in what could be his final live audition for the starting gig. The eyes of coach Vance Joseph and offensive coordinator Mike McCoy will be on his decision-making, his ball placement, his reads, his footwork — the full gamut of responsibilities placed on a quarterback.

But they will also be on his ability to mentally bounce back.

Mistakes will happen, both coaches have told their quarterbacks. Move on.

“Sometimes you see him with his head down, but I’ve been talking to him and getting on him,” wide receiver Demaryius Thomas said. “I’m always trying to keep him smiling. It’s what you do. It’s what we love to do, so you go out and everybody’s not perfect. Nobody is perfect, to tell you the truth. Just go out and do your job and don’t think about bad plays.”

Since the start of the offseason, Lynch has said that he feels more comfortable than he did a year ago, when he was a rookie learning to play under center after spending his college career in the spread offense at Memphis. Early in this training camp, that comfort was obvious, even in a new a system under McCoy. But as more was installed and as the tempo increased, the challenges and mistakes for Lynch did, too. And with each, Lynch’s confidence on the field appeared to take a small hit.

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Broncos receiver Demaryius Thomas wasn’t himself in 2016. He averaged a career-low 12.0 yards per reception. He posted his lowest reception, yardage and touchdown totals since 2011.

Some of his struggles can be attributed to the Broncos’ lack of a starting-caliber quarterback. By the sound of it, though, most of his struggles should be chalked up to the hip injury he suffered in the season opener.

This week, Thomas opened up about the injury, which he managed to play through all season long.

“It was tough,” Thomas said, per “Sometimes I couldn’t stop and sometimes I couldn’t run certain routes that I wanted to run. Sometimes I couldn’t get off press because I had no power in it. Like you said, it wasn’t my excuse. I was out there, going out, trying to help my teammates out and trying not to make it look bad on my part.”

Thomas wouldn’t reveal the exact injury, but he said that he didn’t need surgery.

“It was bad at times, it got worse sometimes,” Thomas said. “I never thought about surgery. I could get it, but I don’t think I need it, I don’t really need it. Right now, I feel great. I’ve been running routes and it hasn’t been bothering me. It just depends on how you get hit now. It’s basically maintaining the hips.”

It’s tough to provide analysis when the exact injury is unknown. If the injury isn’t serious enough to linger into this coming season, then this is good news for the Broncos, because it gives them a reason to believe Thomas will improve off his numbers from last season. However, if this is the kind of injury that lingers, that’s not exactly great news for the Broncos, who will pay Thomas just over $12 million this year.

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