5 surprise standouts early in Denver Broncos training camp

- Wide receivers stepping up

- Ben DiNucci impressing?

- Former 2nd-round pick showing up

Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos / Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
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3. Montrell Washington, wide receiver

Is it time to rev the Montrell Washington hype engine again?

It might just be. Take a look at this from Andrew Mason's latest practice observations:

"Hardly a day goes by now that Montrell Washington doesn’t make something happen. And after a cloudy rookie season that ended with two healthy scratches after the Broncos replaced head coach Nathaniel Hackett with Jerry Rosburg, it seemed that Washington’s days could be numbered.

Right now, the only numbers standing out are the ones that reveal the big plays he’s making.

A 70-yard catch from Ben DiNucci earlier on Tuesday. A 40-yard catch despite tight coverage during Wednesday’s practice. And increasing confidence as he fields punt after punt after punt, with punt periods becoming a key point of emphasis this summer."

Andrew Mason, Denver Sports

Last year, Montrell Washington was arguably the star of training camp for the Denver Broncos, doing much of the same as we're now hearing about in 2023. He was making one play after another, and that continued into the preseason. That's going to be critical once again this preseason as Washington fights for his roster life.

This is a player who was benched late last season when Jerry Rosburg took over. Rosburg is a longtime NFL special teams coach and expert. He's been replaced by the likes of Broncos new special teams coordinator Ben Kotwica, and a guy who literally wrote the book on special teams -- Mike Westhoff. Talk about pressure for Washington, who was already facing long odds to make the roster.

As unfortunate as KJ Hamler's situation is, and as bleak as his roster chances may have seemed anyway, that situation may have given new life to Montrell Washington's roster chances. Especially because there's no clarity right now in the punt return department, the developments with Washington lately are notable.