Denver Broncos: Lots of Familiar Options at Running Back
The Denver Broncos are looking to get their ground attack back on track after a down year. And the team has quite an array of talent in the backfield.
When you have the kind of defense that the Denver Broncos have these days, it’s all the more important to keep it as fresh as possible. Standouts such as Von Miller, Derek Wolfe, Danny Trevathan, Aqib Talib, etc., are even more effective when they aren’t spending the majority of game time on the field. Even the best of units will eventually be worn down without a lack of support.
This offseason, general manager John Elway has worked very hard to beef up both the club’s offensive and defensive lines. He’s also added some new faces to the running back position that will help the team as well. And that includes a four-time Pro Bowler who use to terrorize AFC West defenses in a variety of ways.
The headline addition for the Broncos this offseason was running back Jamaal Charles. Injuries wound up shortening his stay with the Kansas City Chiefs as of late and he ultimately released by the club. In nine seasons with the Chiefs, he rolled up an impressive 9,717 yards from scrimmage and 63 touchdowns. However, he was limited to a combined eight games the past two seasons.
Of course, C.J. Anderson remains the primary starter. Injuries cut his 2016 campaign short as well. The four-year pro runs for 437 yards and four touchdowns in only seven games. Rookie Devontae Booker leads the team in rushing with 612 yards. The fourth-round pick from Utah played in all 16 contests, made six starts and racked up 877 total yards from scrimmage – to go with five scores. We also didn’t see a lot of versatile fullback/running back Juwan Thompson, who began the year on the practice squad and wound up playing in only eight games.
Two more newcomers as of note round out this group, supplemented by second-year fullback Andy Janovich. Elway used a sixth-round pick on Coastal Carolina’s De’Angelo Henderson. And earlier this year, the team signed one-time Baltimore Ravens standout Bernard Pierce. After three promising years with the team, he was released by the franchise in March of 2015 following an arrest for DUI. He landed on the Jacksonville Jaguars roster for seven games later that year but finished the season on injured reserve. After a year off from football, he’s trying to rejuvenate his career.
This is a Denver Broncos backfield with an awful lot of intrigue. But it will take more than that to fix a ground attack that was 27th in the league this past season.
Russell S. Baxter covers the Denver Broncos for Pro Football Spot. You can follow him on Twitter at @baxfootballguru. Looking for more Broncos news and features? Like our Broncos Facebook page HERE and also follow @spot_broncos on Twitter.