The Denver Broncos’ next man up mentality has officially reached players who weren’t with the organization less than a week ago.
In the NFL, sometimes desperate times call for desperate measures. For the Denver Broncos, that means looking to the outside for more players to adapt to the ‘next man up’ mentality.
The Broncos’ injured reserve list is starting to look like a pretty good starting lineup, or at least a really good flag football team with Jordan Taylor at the quarterback position. The have had to adapt to injuries since the beginning of training camp and all the way through week 14 of the regular season.
That’s not news to any NFL team, but the Broncos’ strategy has typically been to promote players from within, at least bringing guys up to the active roster who have played preseason games with the team or worked with the team for a number of weeks just in practice.
The most dramatic example of the team bringing in a player from the outside in recent years was when they called former second-round pick Tatum Bell — literally — out of a cell phone store in a local mall to come and carry the football.
No discrimination when desperate help is needed, I guess.
As a matter of fact, the decision to bring in Bell at the time turned out to be a good one as he fit the system and gave the Broncos some good snaps that particular season (2008, seven games with three starts and a 5.7 yard per carry average).
The Broncos didn’t call Jamar Taylor and Andre Holmes out of the retail world in order to get them on the roster. These are guys who have played a lot of football recently and who have proven themselves capable in the league, but they were in horrible situations elsewhere in the league and might just be falling into place at the perfect time for Denver.
Taylor has worked with Vance Joseph for an offseason with the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins ended up trading him for a draft pick before he had the best year of his career with the Cleveland Browns in 2016.
Holmes worked for two seasons in Oakland with Broncos offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave.
There’s familiarity with these new players on the coaching staff which is why the Broncos really have no fear in putting these guys out there for somewhat prominent roles on Sunday afternoon.
Broncos head coach Vance Joseph said the team is confident in these veteran players to contribute and that they will play not only special teams but Holmes will work in the offensive package and Taylor will be expected to play on defense right away.
It’s crunch time for the Broncos with four games left to play. They are in win-now mode especially with another Wild Card hopeful in the Titans winning their Thursday night matchup to move to 7-6 on the season.
The Broncos have a chance to improve to that same record and stay in the race this week, and they’re going to need both Jamar Taylor and Andre Holmes to have an immediate impact.