Denver Broncos: Jalen Virgil can help fix offensive woes

Denver Broncos, Jalen Virgil (Photo by Bryan Bennett/Getty Images)
Denver Broncos, Jalen Virgil (Photo by Bryan Bennett/Getty Images) /
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Denver Broncos, Jalen Virgil
Denver Broncos, Jalen Virgil – Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports /

Raw potential

Let me preface by saying that I don’t think Virgil is the WR equivalent of Philip Lindsay.  The latter was a decorated college RB that continued to overachieve early in his NFL career. Virgil, on the other hand, is about as raw of a player that will ever make a 53-man roster.

In his five years at Appalachian State, Virgil compiled just under 1,500 yards from scrimmage and 12 TDs along with 1,142 return yards (3 scores).  Yeah, those are numbers nobody’s going to boast about.

Jalen Virgil is a classic case study in what a player CAN be, as opposed to what he’s previously shown. I’ll let this tweet illustrate this point.

Using him like Cordarrelle. Hmm… It’s almost as if someone in the front office saw similar traits in Virgil to the current Falcon.

During George Paton’s tenure in Minnesota, the Vikings had a knack for identifying versatile offensive weapons.  In Percy Harvin and Cordarrelle Patterson, the Vikings employed talented hybrids that have served as the prototype for guys like Deebo Samuel today.

Again, I’m not saying that Virgil’s going to become the caliber of player that Deebo is. I just think it’s important to highlight the type of player that Virgil is. Acquiring players of his ilk has been something that Paton has made a pattern of over his career.

To further examine the comparisons, let’s take a look at how his numbers in the tweet above stack up against the former Vikings.

1. Cordarrelle Patterson: 6’1, 216 lbs. 4.42 40 yard dash. 10.33 100 meter dash.

2. Percy Harvin: 5’11, 200lbs. 4.39 40 yard dash. 10.43 100 meter dash.

*Virgil clocked a 4.40 40-yard dash during his pre-draft process.

What do these guys all share? For their size, they all have tremendous speed and athleticism.  We know that George Paton prioritizes raw athleticism when scouting college players and in the case of these three, they all had exceptional Track & Field backgrounds. As a former track guy, I can’t help but geek out over these kinds of athletes.

So how does Jalen Virgil factor into the Denver Broncos offense and what can we deduce from Harvin and Patterson’s experience to carve out a role for the rookie? Let’s take a look.