If you didn’t read the fine print, you may have missed that on the same day the Broncos signed veteran safety Michael Huff to the 53-man roster, they also added rookie safety John Boyett to the practice squad. To make room for Boyett, running back Edwin Baker was let go.
Boyett worked out for the Broncos on the same day that Huff did, and obviously the Broncos saw enough in Boyett that they felt like they needed to get him into the program.
I was really high on Boyett’s prospects coming out of Oregon this past season, and I remember also doing some in-depth research on him as I wrote for and covered the Indianapolis Colts earlier this season.
Drafted in the sixth round out of Oregon, Boyett fell in the draft due to multiple major injuries but there was no doubt about his playmaking ability. He was arrested earlier this season so he fell out of favor with the Colts, but on the field this is a very intriguing process so I’ll just rehash what I said a few months ago about Boyett. Just swap out all the “Colts” with “Broncos”.
One of the top returning safeties in the country, a guy who leads the secondary for the Ducks and racks up tackles like they’re going out of style. Last season, he had 108 tackles, 3.5 tackles for a loss, an interception, and six passes broken up en route to being a first-team All-Pac 12 selection as a junior by Phil Steele, a second team All-Pac 12 selection by coaches, and an honorable mention All-American. One of the best defensive backs in the country and a leader of the Oregon secondary. As a sophomore in 2010, had 78 tackles and five interceptions and was selected as a second team All-American by SI.com. Needless to say, his career at Oregon has been very productive, and he’s led the team in tackles two out of the three years he has been there. Also a very valuable special teams player for the Ducks who blocked two kicks last year. A player who is always around the ball and always making plays. A solid athlete who looks like he could be a pretty good starting safety in the NFL.
Before Boyett’s 2012 season was cut short, he was off to a killer start with two tackles and an interception. The injuries he suffered were very severe, tearing both patellar tendons in his knees. Still, Boyett isn’t your average sixth round pick. This is an All-Pac 12, All-American safety who led the team in tackles as a freshman in 2009, as a junior in 2011 (108), and finished second by one tackle to Casey Matthews in 2010.
This is an extremely productive player who isn’t the greatest athlete, but he’s got range and instincts, and he finds ways to make plays.
The fact that the Colts decided Boyett was worth a sixth round pick is a good indication to me that his knee surgeries were successful…
Literally just one play away, just as some backup was last year at Oregon when the All-American went down with those devastating injuries. I think Boyett has a chance to be a special player, and if he can prove that his knees are back in shape, I wouldn’t be surprised to see this guy as…a starting safety by 2014.
Obviously I am pretty high on Boyett as a prospect, so I like this move for the Broncos.