Denver Broncos cornerback Essang Bassey has such a unique story throughout his four seasons in the NFL. From coming to the league as an undrafted rookie free agent to becoming a core young player, Bassey has ascended yearly since 2020.

Essang Bassey emerges as key player for Denver Broncos defense, special teams

As Sean Payton takes over this season as the Denver Broncos’ head coach, he’s relying on various veteran players to help him instill the winning culture he hopes to build. Cornerback Essang Bassey has found himself in that mix ahead of the 2023 season.

Broncos’ Bassey values brotherhood bond inside of DB room

Last season was disastrous for the Broncos regarding their on-field performance, but the bond shared inside of the team’s defensive back room held morale together.

Every season, Broncos safety Justin Simmons, Bassey and various teammates get together for an annual trip to Vail, where they all go snowboarding, snowmobiling, and bond away from the football field.

Since entering the league as an undrafted rookie free agent in 2020, Bassey has been part of the Broncos for three of his four seasons in the NFL. He signed a one-year deal to return to Denver in the offseason despite having interest from other NFL teams.

He returned because of the bond shared inside the position room.

“The DB room mostly,” Bassey told Mile High Sports. “Had a good year last year and have been with these guys for a number of years now. I’m comfortable with the guys I work with every day and having just another chance to keep excelling and keep getting better with the same group of guys.”

Bassey has continued to showcase growth

Bassey made the Denver Broncos’ active roster under Vic Fangio as an undrafted rookie free agent during his rookie season. He turned heads and played well before he suffered a torn ACL against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Now, Bassey has grown more comfortable as an NFL cornerback. Not only can he play inside the nickel, where he appeared in 14 games last season, but he can also play on the outside and at safety if asked to.

On top of his defensive versatility, he’s also solidified himself as a core four special teams player.

“Yeah, that’s the thing, the more you can do, the more valuable you are,” Bassey told Mile High Sports. “Injuries happen in the NFL, and being able to step into any spot you’re asked to and still perform at a high level is how you stick around and prove your worth. That’s the biggest thing for me is just staying consistent and playing to the standard we’ve set as a team, whether on special teams or defense.”

Bassey has two total interceptions after last week’s preseason game; he’s on a fast-track path to making the roster again based on his value defensively and on special teams.

While K’Waun Williams continues to rest and rehab while dealing with an ankle injury, Bassey is the next man up at the nickel if Williams recovery takes longer than anticipated.

Bassey has had a terrific training camp and preseason. He is a player that Broncos fans must continue to watch.