Report: Broncos OLB Shaq Barrett cleared for activity

DENVER, CO - AUGUST 29: Offensive tackle Trenton Brown
DENVER, CO - AUGUST 29: Offensive tackle Trenton Brown /

The Denver Broncos are slowly but surely getting healthy defensively. Shaq Barrett has been cleared for some football activity, per Mike Klis…

So far this preseason, the Denver Broncos have been without Von Miller (who needs no preseason), Shane Ray (who has an injured wrist), and Shaq Barrett (who has been recovering from a hip injury since late May).

Not surprisingly as a result, there have been no meetings with opposing quarterbacks through two preseason games, though Kasim Edebali and Vontarrius Dora have still managed to put some pressure on.

Add in the recent hip concern with DeMarcus Walker, and the Broncos’ outside linebacker position has been a bit of a mess. That’s why this news from Mike Klis and Nicki Jhabvala is some of the most welcomed news since training camp began:

Barrett played in less than half of the Broncos’ defensive snaps last season (415 in total), but was once again one of the most productive players on the defensive roster, earning the fourth highest grade on the team behind Von Miller, Chris Harris Jr., and Aqib Talib.

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So, it’s not difficult to understand why his return to the field, even in a limited capacity, is great news for the Denver Broncos.

The Broncos’ defense is going to be heavily relied upon again this season, and Barrett has been one of the team’s most valuable reserves since coming on as an undrafted free agent in 2014.

Somehow, the Broncos snuck him on the practice squad for much of that season, but he made the 53-man roster in 2015 and has never looked back. In his first two seasons of play with the Broncos, Barrett has racked up eight sacks (six in 2015), 32 hurries, and 43 stops in the run game.

His contributions are certainly not overlooked and were it not for the presence of DeMarcus Ware, there’s a pretty good chance Barrett would have been a full-time starter for this Denver defense.

Most teams would play him starter snaps, but the Broncos have so much talent at outside linebacker, they are able to use him in more of a reserve role.

With no DeMarcus Ware this season, Barrett should be in line for a significant increase in snaps.