Denver Broncos: 5 biggest risers during the 2020 season
By Noah Smith
Denver Broncos: 5 Biggest Risers from the 2020 NFL Season
The 2020 NFL Season has not been kind to the Denver Broncos. The Broncos have battled countless injuries to key stars, COVID related absences, and on-field struggles all season.
As a result, the Broncos sit at 4-8 entering Week 14 with a matchup against the 4-8 Carolina Panthers on the horizon. The Broncos will have a chance to hit .500 by running the table in the final weeks, but the team is likely staring at a fourth straight losing season.
While the team has struggled to put it all together during the 2020 NFL Season, several individual players have taken massive jumps to become rotational players or even stars among their NFL peers this season.
Here are five Broncos who have made the biggest jump this season, in order from smallest to biggest leap:
5. K.J. Hamler
7th round rookie Tyrie Cleveland was in consideration for this spot due to his work on special teams as a kickoff returner, but Hamler takes this spot due to his role on offense.
Coming into the season, many believed that rookie K.J. Hamler would see his action mainly through special teams, and as a “gadget-play guy” on offense. The Denver Broncos believed Hamler was ready for true game action, and he has not disappointed.
Hamler has served as a weapon from the slot and surpassed many people’s expectations. Hamler currently sits third among receivers in receptions and yards with 27 receptions for 291 yards, and fourth in both categories on the team, per ESPN.
More importantly than production, Hamler changes the way teams play the Broncos’ offense. Hamler’s speed is respected by NFL defenses, and teams are dropping their safeties back to keep Hamler in front of them, opening up the run game for Melvin Gordon and Phillip Lindsay.
Hamler also gives the offense a jolt in the quick-passing game. Against the Chiefs, Hamler not only opened the field up for Lock and the offense but took short passes for first downs on multiple occasions.
Hamler may not have the gaudy stats of Pittsburgh Steelers’ second-round pick Chase Claypool, but Hamler’s impact has certainly opened things up for the Broncos’ offense. He has certainly made a jump that not many expected and has earned a spot on this list.