With Stewart Bradley injured, Von Miller facing indefinite suspension, and Wesley Woodyard kicking inside to play middle linebacker for the Broncos, the time is now for second year player Danny Trevathan to step up his game.
Trevathan was a very valuable reserve for the Broncos in 2012, finishing second on the team among rookies with 33 tackles, and he also showed that he’s not too shabby in coverage.
Sometimes it helps to be ‘undersized.’
Trevathan is now the Broncos’ starting weakside linebacker with Wesley Woodyard moving to the middle, and while the Broncos don’t have a bunch of run thumpers at the LB positions right now, they have a ton of speed and tackling ability.
At Kentucky, Trevathan was a tackling machine. He led his team in tackles each of his final two seasons as a Wildcat, and played in all 52 possible games he could have played in in college.
It seemed heading into the 2012 NFL Draft that Trevathan had been written off, mainly because of size and athletic ability concerns. He came in at 6’0″ 237 pounds, so he’s not a tiny linebacker by any means, but at that size, you’d hope a player can run a pretty fast 40 yard dash. Trevathan pulled his hamstring while running in the mid-4.8 range at his pro day.
He didn’t have a great pro day workout in terms of measurables, but the Broncos saw the energy Trevathan had and they took a shot on him in the sixth round.
By most accounts, Trevathan had a heck of a rookie season, spending quite a bit of time covering the opposing team’s tight end when he was on the field. Now, he will be asked to do that and more.
Against the Seahawks, Trevathan was one of the very few bright spots for the Broncos, making plays all over the field and showing some great quickness on a delayed blitz in which he forced a throw away.
The Broncos can be creative in the ways they use Trevathan. He’s not really a run thumper, but he’s pretty solid in coverage and can occasionally rush the quarterback. He’s come along a lot faster than anyone thought he could when the Broncos drafted him, and now he finds himself with a critical starting role on the weakside of Denver’s defense.
The time is now for Trevathan to step up and make a name for himself. Such an odd set of circumstances has to mean fate for a guy like this to get his big break in the NFL.