Notable former Denver Broncos who will face the team in 2023

New England Patriots v Buffalo Bills
New England Patriots v Buffalo Bills / Bryan Bennett/GettyImages
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Jets: Nathaniel Hackett, Zach Azzanni, Marquand Manuel, Connor McGovern, Will Parks, Diontae Spencer, Billy Turner

The Jets have the second-most amount of former Broncos on their team, second only to the Dolphins. The most-anticipated reunion is by far the Nathaniel Hackett one. Hackett was the team’s head coach for less than an entire season before being fired. Sadly, Hackett just did not seem to fit as a head coach at this time and is now the offensive coordinator for the Jets, who also brought in Zach Azzanni who coached the Broncos’ receivers over the last several years.

Marquand Manuel was the Broncos’ safety for just one season, all the way back in 2008. He’s not the safeties coach for the Jets and will get to coach up former Broncos safety Will Parks.

Other former Broncos currently on the Jets’ roster are offensive lineman Connor McGovern, kick returner Diontae Spencer, and guard Billy Turner.

Packers: OLB Justin Hollins

Justin Hollins was a backup outside linebacker for the Broncos during his rookie season in 2019. He had 21 total tackles and one tackle for loss to go along with a single sack that year. Since being released after one year, Hollins has played for the Los Angeles Rams and the Green Bay Packers. He returned to the Rams after one year in Green Bay.

Bills: Mike Shula, Sam Martin, Von Miller, Latavius Murray, Shane Ray

In each of his two seasons as the quarterbacks coach of the Denver Broncos, Mike Shula had two different starting quarterbacks. First was former second-rounder Drew Lock, who many had very high hopes for coming out of Missouri. While he wasn’t terrible, we just did not see enough progression from him during his time in Denver. He was eventually beaten out by Teddy Bridgewater in the 2021 training camp, to the displeasure of many. Neither quarterback was a long-term answer.

It was just a tough situation to be in if you’re Shula.

The most notable on this list is by far Von Miller. Miller was a star for the Denver Broncos for so many years since being drafted second-overall in the 2011 NFL Draft. Miller played 142 games for the Broncos, recording 490 total tackles, and 110.5 sacks for the team during that time.

He put fear into the eyes of NFL quarterbacks. Sadly, the Broncos traded him to the Los Angeles Rams in 2021 after he missed the 2020 season due to an ankle injury. He flirted with Broncos fans since leaving, saying maybe he would return at some point. That does not seem likely these days, as he signed a huge contract with the Buffalo Bills.

Shane Ray is another former first-round pick by the Broncos. Unfortunately, he is one of the many that have not worked out in the long run. While Ray did have an eight-sack season on his résumé, he finished his Broncos career with two-straight one-sack seasons. Ray was not re-signed by the team in March of 2019.

Latavius Murray spent just one season with the Broncos and in my opinion, the team should have brought him back—especially with the fact that at Javonte Williams likely won’t be the same in 2023 after tearing his ACL last year.

Murray played in 12 games for the Broncos last year, rushing for 703 yards and scoring five touchdowns on the ground on 160 carries. I really think he would have been a key part in 2023, especially since he would have been reunited with Sean Payton, who was his head coach in New Orleans.

Sam Martin punted for the Broncos for two seasons. He averaged 46.4 yards per punt during that time but had a terrible percentage of downing opponents inside the 20-yard line. The Broncos have unfortunately had some punting issues as of late, so the release of Martin wasn’t overly surprising.