With an outside linebacker group consisting of names like Von Miller, DeMarcus Ware and Shane Ray, a seventh-round draft pick from the 2010 draft isn’t supposed to make the team. But that’s what Dekoda Watson is on pace to do.

Watson, a journeyman linebacker who most recently played with the New England Patriots last season, has been an unstoppable force rushing the passer through the first three preseason games this year. Watson had his best game yet, with an outstanding performance in Saturday night’s 17-9 victory against the Los Angeles Rams, compiling four tackles, 2.5 sacks, two tackles for a loss and three quarterback hits.

After his performance on Saturday, Watson now has four sacks and six quarterback hits in the first three preseason games. Even with the monster performance against the Rams, Watson’s biggest concern is still about making the team.

“I’m just worried about getting to the season, so I’m just going to let this be a building block and continue to be a student of the game and continue to prepare,” Watson said after Saturday’s victory. “Right now I’m just worrying about me and doing what I need to do …I’m going to continue to put my best foot forward, and we will see what happens.”

Along with his outstanding play during the preseason, Watson believes he has another major advantage working for him — experience. Unlike other players vying for a linebacker spot on the team, such as undrafted rookie Vontarrius Dora, Watson has played in 73 games with seven starts. That also means that he’s not eligible for the practice squad, making it even more important to earn a spot on the 53-man roster.

“He’s played amazing,” Todd Davis said following the game. “He’s a natural outside linebacker, and you see it when he’s out there on the field. You see how well he rushes the passer and how well he gets home.”

While Watson has bounced around from inside linebacker to outside linebacker during his six years in the league, he feels that his opportunity to rush the passer in the Broncos defense puts him in the best position to succeed.

“I can just let go. I can let go. That’s the biggest thing,” Watson said. “They always emphasize speed, and that’s something that I have, and that’s something I’m going to continue to use to the best of my ability, and I love it. It’s a great place for me, and I feel very much at home in this defense.”

Although Watson has succeeded in the Broncos defense as an outside linebacker, he knows he has the versatility to help the Broncos in the middle of the defense, as well as on special teams. He’ll do whatever he needs to do to make this team.

“Wherever they need me, I will contribute — on special teams, they need me on offense, they need me to serve water on the sideline, I’ll do it,” Watson said. “Whatever I need to do to be able to bring to this team, I’ll do it.”

Typically players on the bubble have to rely heavily on their performance in the fourth and final preseason game. Watson, though, has proved through the first three preseason games that he should no longer be on the bubble. Instead, he should be a lock to make this dangerous Broncos defense. Watson gives defensive coordinator Wade Phillips yet another weapon to get after the quarterback.