Perusing through Jeff Legwold’s latest at ESPN.com, he mentioned something about Lamin Barrow that indicates to me the Broncos’ fifth round pick out of LSU is going to have a growing legend as training camp approaches.
Nate Irving, a former third-round pick, sits atop the depth chart at middle linebacker, but he will have to hold off this year’s fifth-round pick, Lamin Barrow, to keep the job. Barrow is a third-day pick who already has the look of a guy who’s going to push early and often for playing time.
It might not seem like much, but if Barrow is making that kind of impression on writers, then he’s likely showing something to the coaches as well.
The leading tackler at LSU over the last two seasons, Barrow is a speedy middle linebacker prospect who can cover and give you three-down ability. Since the Broncos play out of the nickel a lot more often than not, Barrow is a guy who could really fit well with what they are trying to do in terms of getting speed at the linebacker spots and guys who can cover backs and tight ends.
Since middle linebacker is a position seemingly up for grabs at training camp this year, you can expect the legend of either Lamin Barrow or Nate Irving to grow more and more, and potentially even both. The Broncos obviously had high hopes for Irving coming out in 2011 as a third round pick, but he’s suffered through injuries and has had to play different positions due to injuries or suspensions of other players and hasn’t found a groove.
He showed an ability to make bone crunching hits behind the line of scrimmage at times last year, and he’s getting the first crack at the starting job with the Broncos.
Still, it’s interesting to read the reports talking about Barrow as someone — a fifth round pick no less — who could challenge for a starting job as a rookie on a Super Bowl contender.