Drew Sanders, Thomas Incoom ... a bigger role against the Lions?

Two rookies could have an increased workload against the Detroit Lions on Saturday night.

Kansas City Chiefs v Denver Broncos
Kansas City Chiefs v Denver Broncos / Justin Edmonds/GettyImages

Ahead of the Broncos Week 15 matchup, to be specific on Thursday, it was announced that Denver waived outside linebacker Ronnie Perkins.

Perkins was signed by the Broncos after the Week 2 loss against the Washington Commanders due to health uncertainty with Frank Clark, who was released later in the season. Ronnie appeared in five games for Denver (vs Jets, at Chiefs, vs Packers, vs Chiefs, and at Bills), and had the following stats ...

  • 130 snaps (109 on defense, 21 on special teams)
  • 8 tackles (6 solo)
  • 2 tackles for loss
  • 1 QB hit

Since the Week 10 Monday Night Football win over the Buffalo Bills, Perkins has been inactive with no injury designation.

During the Week 14 win over the Los Angeles Chargers, second-year edge rusher Nik Bonitto suffered a knee injury, he left the game and was seen on the sidelines with a brace on his left knee. Following the game against the Chargers, the only update given on Bonitto is that he will not be placed on the Injured Reserve list, which is good news. The bad news is that he did not practice all week, which led to him being ruled OUT for Saturday Night's game against the Detroit Lions.

The interesting thing is that despite Bonitto being ruled out, Denver decided to waive Perkins, who could have played instead of Nik against Detroit. With the above being said, there are two rookies that can have larger roles against the Lions. These are Drew Sanders and Thomas Incoom.

Sanders has seen an increased role as the season goes through. On the other side, Incoom, who was one of the four 2023 undrafted free agents who made the Broncos' 53-man roster, has appeared in three games so far (vs Commanders, at Dolphins, and at Bears), and has been inactive since then.

Sanders has played in 13 games, starting four, and has 14 tackles and one fumble recovery. Incoom has played in three games and has one tackle. Incoom is an edge rusher, which would make sense if he gets some reps against the Lions. Sanders is more of an inside linebacker, but in college, he has played at the edge too.

""I’m becoming better and better every single week.""

Drew Sanders

According to Broncos insider Zac Stevens, Sanders would be "comfortable" playing as an outside linebacker/edge rusher, so I would not be surprised if he gets the majority of Bonitto's reps against Detroit.

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With Bonitto out, and Perkins waived, would you like to see Drew Sanders as an edge rusher against the Lions? Will Incoom have his first snaps since Week 4?