The preseason is officially over. It’s time for the Denver Broncos‘ 53-man roster (at least, the initial iteration of it) to be set and roster moves to be made. Although general manager George Paton acknowledged during the preseason finale television broadcast that most of the 53-man roster positions are set, this final game could certainly swing the pendulum for some players one way or the other.
Which players boosted their chances of making the roster against the Vikings? A number of guys are going to make George Paton’s already difficult decisions even harder. Let’s take a look through a handful of guys on either side of the ball that may have boosted their roster chances the most after the team’s victory in the preseason finale.
Which Broncos players made the biggest impression vs. Vikings?
1. McTelvin Agim, DL
Every so often, you’ll see flashes from defensive lineman McTelvin Agim that give you hope he can live up to his third-round NFL Draft status. Unfortunately, we didn’t see it enough in his first two NFL seasons and we didn’t see it in the Broncos’ first two preseason games, either. In fact, I would say Agim was one of the biggest “fallers” of the first two weeks of the preseason. In week three against the Vikings, he turned it around.
Agim was all over the field for the Broncos against the Vikings, racking up a sack, two forced fumbles, two batted passes, and two total tackles. It was a sensational performance against the pass for Agim, although the Broncos still struggled against the Vikings at times against the run.
The biggest question now with Agim and the rest of the Broncos’ young defensive linemen is how the team will approach the numbers game at that spot. Do they keep five guys? If so, who do the Broncos cut between Agim, Jonathan Harris, Eyioma Uwazurike, and Matt Henningsen? Does Uwazurike make it based on his fourth-round draft status this year?
At this point, it’s hard to really know what the Broncos will do if they only keep five defensive linemen. If they keep six, Agim’s path to the roster is a little easier to see. Ultimately, it wouldn’t be shocking if some team came calling to acquire Agim in a trade after this game and the Broncos certainly need picks. If the team is confident that Uwazurike can play a significant role this season, Agim’s big game against the Vikings could turn into future draft capital for the Broncos.
Unfortunately, what Agim showed in this preseason finale is more than we’ve seen from any of the other backup defensive linemen in the preseason combined. That may be a little dramatic, but it doesn’t feel far off from the truth, either. The Broncos’ reserve defensive linemen haven’t impressed, so to see a game like this from Agim was a bit jarring.