Denver Broncos offseason stories: Michael Ojemudia
Former Denver Broncos third-round pick Michael Ojemudia could have a bigger role in the 2022 season than many expect at a crowded position.
OTA’s kicked off on Monday for the Denver Broncos and no story will catch attention like Russell Wilson and the offense, but a few positions will have a bit more competition to earn a roster spot and/or playing time than others.
With a new head coach in Nathaniel Hackett, and coordinator in Ejiro Evero along with offseason additions via free agency and the draft. Several players have been put on notice that they’ll have to earn their right to play and maybe even stay on the roster.
One player that sticks out to me is Michael Ojemudia Denver added K’waun Williams as the presumed starting slot corner alongside promising young Pat Surtain and veteran Ronald Darby.
The Broncos also drafted Damarri Mathis and Faion Hicks, added JaQuan McMillian as a UFA, and have Essang Bassey on the roster who has played significant snaps in the past.
Ojemudia impressed me as a rookie filling after the defensive backfield faced many injuries during the 2020 season. He amassed 62 tackles and unofficially I remember two if not three interceptions negated by penalties away from the play.
He managed to linger around Fangio’s doghouse, but I never quite gathered why. Considering what he was tasked to do during his rookie campaign, from depth to filling in and starting some games (played in all 16) I thought he did an admirable job.
Based on NFL.com’s draft prospect overview he “looks the part with good size and long arms”. He ran a 4.45 40-yard dash at the combine. Ojemudia was initially brought in for depth behind AJ Bouye and Bryce Callahan, but the injury/covid bug struck in a strange season league-wide.
He was instead asked to be the no. 1 boundary corner several times during his rookie campaign. While he did look the part of a rookie (a la Julio Jones making him look bad against the Falcons). I walked away intrigued at his potential.
2021 offered no relief as Denver added Ronald Darby and Will Fuller in free agency and selected Pat Surtain in the first round of the draft.
Injuries limited Ojemudia to only two games and he now sits like a man having to prove his worth to the new staff in order to reach that potential with the Denver Broncos.
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I feel that Michael Ojemudia is a talented young player with a big upside, but he’ll have to show the coaches and teammates to stick in the rotation. Here is to hoping he breaks out this season as the 4th corner spot can and will prove important throughout the season.