Top 3 performers in Broncos preseason win over Cowboys

Denver Broncos, Baron Browning (Photo by C. Morgan Engel/Getty Images)
Denver Broncos, Baron Browning (Photo by C. Morgan Engel/Getty Images) /
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The Denver Broncos defeated the Dallas Cowboys 17-7 on Saturday night in their preseason opener. The matchup featured an abundance of young talent getting meaningful playing time.

Nathaniel Hackett, who got his first win as a head coach on Saturday, recognized several different players rising up to the occasion.

"“That’s what you want to see in preseason, you don’t want it to be a one guy show. You want to see the ball spread around and let everyone have an opportunity.” Nathaniel Hackett (via Broncos PR)"

Here are the top three performers of Saturday night’s game.

Denver Broncos top performer vs. Cowboys no. 3: Baron Browning, EDGE

Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos, Baron Browning (Photo by C. Morgan Engel/Getty Images) /

Broncos Country, the Baron Browning we have all been anxiously waiting for has officially arrived. After spending his entire rookie season playing inside linebacker, Browning was asked by Denver’s new coaching staff to make a positional switch to outside linebacker. Based on his performance against the Dallas Cowboys on Saturday night, it certainly seemed like a clever move.

Browning ended the night with four total tackles, one sack, one tackle for loss, and one pass defended. Pushing, spinning, and ripping through blockers, Browning’s athleticism was on full display throughout the night. Yet it was his bend around the edge, somewhat reminiscent of Von Miller’s, that seemed to get Broncos fans most excited.

In Saturday’s postgame press conference, Head Coach Nathanial Hackett was asked to comment on Browning’s debut at OLB.

"“He was around the quarterback quite a bit, got a sack, a couple of tackles, a pass breakup, and his acceleration off the ball and ability to bend on the edge is really good to see. He came out and played free. I thought it was awesome to see.”"

While Browning managed to earn some praise, his utilization in the coming weeks will be indicative of how the coaching staff truly feels about him. Browning’s extended playtime throughout all four quarters did not sit well with many Broncos fans, especially after witnessing the loss of inside linebacker Jonas Griffith earlier in the game.

Overall, Browning’s performance was everything Broncos fans had hoped to get when the team first selected him in the 3rd round of last year’s NFL draft. His development over the course of this season will have heavy implications on how the Broncos decide to move forward with extending players like Bradley Chubb and Malik Reed.