Stock up: RB Jaleel McLaughlin
Despite having a very slim chance of making the team's 53-man roster at the beginning of the offseason, Broncos rookie UDFA RB Jaleel McLaughlin has made quite the name for himself and put his stamp of legitimacy in his preseason showing against the 49ers. McLaughlin rushed seven times for 45 yards and a touchdown and added two receptions for eight yards and a touchdown through the air as well.
This is now the second week in a row the rookie has averaged over five yards an attempt on the ground and he continues to prove he belongs on Denver's active roster simply due to his explosiveness and home-run speed at the running back position.
Unfortunately for RB Tyler Badie, he missed the Week 2 game due to a nagging hip injury that held him out of practice which ultimately paved the way for McLaughlin to lock in the third spot on the depth chart behind Javonte Williams and Samaje Perine. While it is expected Payton will only carry three running backs on his roster heading into the season, there is still hope for Badie or Tony Jones Jr. to take up a potential fourth spot on the active roster however, remains unlikely.
Regardless, with how effective and transformative McLaughlin has made Denver's run game for the second-team offense, it would have to take a meltdown for the rookie to not make this team.
QB Russell Wilson
In just one offensive series, QB Russell Wilson showcased serious promise for any believers in his ability to make a massive comeback in the 2023 season. Wilson was decisive with his decision-making and was hitting his open running lanes when his receivers were not able to find separation which is always a good sign for the 34-year-old. He may not be as fast as he was once upon a time, but the slimmed-down version of Wilson certainly makes up for his age itself.
In just 12 snaps, Wilson completed three of his six attempts for 24 yards and rushed three times for 25 yards, but had a big gain called back from a Courtland Sutton holding call. In what was likely his last game before the season opener, Wilson looked very sharp and efficient operating in Payton's offense, which is ultimately why he was pulled from the game early. Fortunately for the offense, Wilson looks in the best shape he has been in over the last few years and appears to be miles more confident in his own capabilities in the new offense as opposed to last season. Ladies and gentlemen, the Russell Wilson revenge tour is upon us.