Broncos starter who could lose job to a rookie: Ronald Darby, Cornerback
This one may be a bit of a stretch but only because teams usually want to have experience at the cornerback position. That’s not to say that Ronald Darby played great in his first year in Denver.
Darby missed an early portion of the 2021 season with injury and ended up playing in just 11 games for the team. He had 53 tackles and six pass breakups on the year.
The Broncos have Patrick Surtain on one side of the field and he has multi-time All-Pro written all over him, but the team also drafted Damarri Mathis in the fourth round out of LSU.
Mathis is not a refined product either, but he brings a physicality to the cornerback position that will be a welcomed sight. He gets right into receiver off the snap and is a solid tackler, one that not only uses great technique but hits more like a safety as well.
Mathis will also be able to come up and help in run support and as soon as he can be trusted in downfield coverage, should be a player that sees the field often.
The Broncos still have 2020 third-round pick Michael Ojemudia and Mathis would also have to leap him in the pecking order but after missing most all of the 2021 season, Ojemudia is likely on the same playing field as the rookie.
Darby will be the starter when the season opens but if he struggles or has injury issues again, the Broncos could turn to Mathis in his place.