Interview With New Broncos TE Joe Don Duncan

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Dec 22, 2014; Cincinnati, OH, USA;Denver Broncos tight end Virgil Green (85) against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

This is not a prospect out of nowhere, either. I was reading a phenomenal article from Matt Waldman at Football Outsiders, and he sold me on Duncan as a tremendous H-back prospect.

Apparently, NFL teams agreed. The problem was at the time, no one was willing to take the risk medically.

“The interest was definitely there. I think teams were excited by my upside and athleticism. The fact that I played at a small school in division-II I don’t think really scared teams away, I think it was the medical. We talked to teams and they said the question was whether or not I would be healthy and they just wanted to wait that out.”

So he waited, and then waited some more. In fact, Duncan waited long enough that he accepted a coaching position at Dixie State, coaching the wide receivers. He figured the NFL shot might come again, so he kept working out and getting his body ready for the NFL, and sure enough the Broncos came calling a couple of weeks ago about the possibility.

“I got a call from them saying there might be some possible interest with all the tight end shuffling going on. Not only with the Broncos but in the NFL over the past week. We looked at the roster and looked at what they had going on. I was familiar with coach Kubiak from the draft process last year. I got to sit with him at the Combine and we really hit it off in that short time period that we had to talk to each other.

I like the system he runs. He runs the ball well, you know, he sets up the pass with the run. He’s been successful in this league not only on offense but with my position which is tight end/h-back. He’s always had great tight ends and h-backs on his team. I just thought it was a great fit and I’m glad to be part of something that could be pretty special.”

The Kubiak Connection has been a common theme among Broncos free agent acquisitions this offseason, as has it been for really everything, including the coaching staff. John Elway and Peyton Manning are already great recruiting chips, but apparently Kubiak has some serious pull as well.

I figured since Kubiak likes to use multiple tight ends in his offense, he’d have something creative cooked up for Duncan, who mentioned he might be getting a look as an H-back. I asked him if the Broncos told him exactly where they envisioned him playing in this offense.

“I think it’s going to be 100 percent H-back. I’m going to be a move guy — wing, fullback, split out, kind of a hybrid guy. I’m gonna be asked to block and catch passes which I have no problem with. I consider myself a pretty versatile football player. I like doing all of it, showing coaches that I’m not a one-sided player, so I’m looking forward to the opportunity.”

Next: Can Duncan Block?