5 Broncos players that boosted their roster chances vs. Vikings

Denver Broncos, Seth Williams (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
Denver Broncos, Seth Williams (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images) /
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Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos, Jonathon Cooper (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images) /

Denver Broncos riser vs. Vikings no. 4: Jonathon Cooper, EDGE

Jonathon Cooper was looking like the “old” Jonathon Cooper in the Broncos’ preseason game against the Vikings. It wasn’t a perfect performance, of course, but Cooper was out there flying around and showing off his outstanding motor and athletic gifts.

They were on full display at one point when he combined with Jonathan Harris for a sack, and he finished with five tackles overall. Where Cooper can make an impact in addition to his work off the edge is on special teams, and I think based on that alone, he brings great value to the table.

The question off the edge right now is what happens with Malik Reed. Is he going to be on this roster when the regular season rolls around? How are you going to justify giving him snaps over Baron Browning or even Nik Bonitto at this point?

Jonathon Cooper has three years remaining on his rookie deal at a cheaper rate than Reed, and Cooper can be a core special teams player for you. I just don’t see how you can keep Reed and cut Cooper after this game.

Denver Broncos riser vs. Vikings no. 5: Aaron Patrick, EDGE

Speaking of the depth at the edge position, Aaron Patrick was outstanding in this game. He flashed his dominant physical traits off the edge and had the kind of big game he desperately needed to have to convince this team that he wouldn’t just “strictly” be a special teams guy.

He’s been called a core special teams player before, and now we got the chance to see some of his progression off the edge. Perhaps the Broncos could sneak him through to the practice squad if they are only planning on keeping five guys off the edge, but I think Patrick could play a bigger role for you on special teams and he showed out with his athleticism and range in this game. The Broncos bet on his traits when they acquired him last year and they should continue to do so now.