The Denver Broncos had one open slot on their 10-man practice squad elsewhere, and they filled it by signing rookie defensive end Zach Thompson out of Wake Forest.
Thompson’s NFL career began this season with the New York Jets, who signed him after the draft. Thompson is the lone defensive lineman on the Broncos’ practice squad, an area of the team that has become a major strength.
Watching some of his stuff at Wake Forest, it’s clear that the 6’5″ 265 pound Thompson is a disruptive player, leading the team with 12 tackles for loss as a senior and finishing second with five sacks. He’s not as big, but his playing style sort of reminds me of Derek Wolfe.
Playing primarily LDE for the Demon Deacons, Thompson displayed a nose for the football and excellent tackling ability. The Broncos only looked outside their own roster for this one practice squad spot, so that says something about what they scouted and saw from Thompson both in college and in preseason work.
As well as the Broncos have done at developing defensive line talent in recent years, it makes me that much more excited about this addition up front. He’ll get a chance to compete day in and day out with the best team in the NFL.
Thompson will wear jersey number 72 with the Broncos.