August 27, 2011; Englewood, CO, USA; Denver Broncos guard Chris Kuper (73) prepares for a down during a preseason game against the Seattle Seahawks at Sports Authority Field. The Broncos defeated the Seahawks 23-20. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Denver Broncos Offensive Lineman Player Profile: Chris Kuper


At almost every level of sports, coaches typically expect their most experienced players to be leaders and to help the younger players learn the system, as well as adapt to the way their particular team does things. That is the case that Denver Bronco offensive lineman Chris Kuper may find himself in as the 2013 version of the Denver Broncos takes shape. Despite a few injury shortened seasons, Kuper is the most tenured Broncos offensive lineman on the roster and that experience will be crucial as the team attempts to build a running game this season to match the high-powered passing attack already in place. Please continue reading for a synopsis of Chris Kuper’s career, as well as a number of awards he has received during his football career (courtesy www.denverbroncos.com).

Birth date and location: December 19, 1982 – Anchorage, AK (age 30)

Height: 6-4

Weight: 303

Jersey number: 73

High school: A.J. Dimond High School

College: University of North Dakota

NFL Draft: 2006 (Round 5; 161st overall pick)

Years pro: 7

Games played: 86

Games started: 78

Awards / accomplishments:

  • Invited to the Pro Bowl as an alternate following the 2012 season despite playing just seven games (5 starts), electing not to play in the game due to injuries that limited him during the year
  • Selected by his teammates as the recipient of the Ed Block Courage Award in 2012 after persevering  through a fractured/dislocated ankle suffered in the 2011 regular-season finale and a broken forearm sustained through training camp
  • Named a first-team All-Pro selection by The Dallas Morning News in 2011 after starting all 16 regular-season games and helping the Broncos lead the league in rushing with a team-record 2,632 yards
  • Finished as the NFL’s only 16-game starting guard to not allow a sack in 2008 (Stats Inc.)
  • Helped the Broncos set a club record for fewest sacks allowed (12) in 2008 and rank third in the league in yards per rush (4.8) despite placing seven running backs on injured reserve
  • Started the Broncos’ final 11 games in 2007 at left guard after seeing time in one game with the club as a rookie in 2006
  • Received All-America honors from the Associated Press in each of his final two seasons at the University of North Dakota, where he logged his first 29 career starts at right guard before switching to left tackle early in his senior year
  • Earned his second consecutive Most Valuable Offensive Lineman award from the North Central Conference and was a first-team All-American (AP) and all-conference choice as a 13-game starter during his senior campaign
  • Nominated for the Gene Upshaw Award, presented to the best offensive or defensive lineman in Division II, as a first-team All-American during his senior year in 2005
  • Received second-team All-America recognition (AP) and the NCC Most Valuable Offensive Lineman award as a 14-game starter during his junior campaign

Interesting Facts:

  • Kuper was an all-state selection as a two-way lineman during high school
  • Contributed 119 tackles (65 solo) and 10 sacks during his senior campaign
  • Recognized as an all-conference choice on offense and defense following his junior and senior seasons in high school while being named the conference’s Most Valuable Lineman as a senior
  • Helped his high school reach the state championship as a junior
  • Was one of only two Division II players invited to play in the East-West Shrine Game
  • Majored in communications at North Dakota
  • Married during the offseason leading up to the 2009 season

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