Broncos RB Devontae Booker more comfortable in new offense

Sayre Bedinger
DENVER, CO - JANUARY 1: Running back Devontae Booker
DENVER, CO - JANUARY 1: Running back Devontae Booker /

Denver Broncos running back Devontae Booker is more comfortable in the new style of offense being implemented by Mike McCoy…

Despite playing in just under 46 percent of the offensive snaps, running back Devontae Booker led the Denver Broncos’ running back position in that category in 2016.

He was also one of the top backs in the NFL at gaining yards after contact according to Pro Football Focus…

There are a number of reasons for Booker’s success after initially being contacted.

First of all, he seemed to deliberately take on unnecessary contact at times in 2016. It was frustrating watching a guy that had so much success at Utah running around defenders seemingly struggling with his confidence in the NFL.

Booker had his share of forgettable moments, including four fumbles. However, he was effective after initial contact and proved himself a very capable receiver out of the backfield.

Despite looking like a young Arian Foster coming out of college, the transition to Gary Kubiak’s offense wasn’t seamless for Booker. He seemed to struggle with finding that cutting lane, and often resorted to using blunt force instead.

Entering year two in a new offense under the direction of Mike McCoy, Booker says things have slowed down for him:

"“It’s different, way different. Last year, there was a lot of thinking with me being out there. I was nervous just thinking about the whole offense. My whole head was spinning. Now, even though we have a new offense now, I work my butt off studying the whole offense. Everything is starting to slow up and I’m able to play faster.”Devontae Booker (quotes obtained via Broncos PR)"

What we saw from Booker last season looked more like the early years of Knowshon Moreno than the early years of Arian Foster. That’s not entirely a bad thing, because in an offense that Mike McCoy passed down to Adam Gase, Knowshon Moreno was a thousand yard back.

The Broncos have depth in their running back group this year, so Booker is going to have to earn every touch.

The fact that things are slowing down for him mentally and he’s able to be more free to make plays is very encouraging.