The Denver Broncos have invested in the continuous growth shown by veteran safety P.J. Locke. With all of the changes surrounding the team this offseason, Locke has found himself in a position to lead the way at safety at a time when the team needs him the most.

Denver Broncos safety P.J. Locke stepping into a larger role in 2024

P.J. Locke has been waiting for his moment to step into a larger role since he signed with the Denver Broncos in 2019. From practice squad player to special teams ace, Locke is now a prominent starter for the Broncos secondary and is ready to step into an even larger role this upcoming season.

After the Broncos moved on from veteran safety Justin Simmons, someone Locke was really close with on the field and is still close with off the field, the future outlook of the position was questionable before free agency, considering Locke was set to test the open market.

Once Locke decided to return to Denver, the vision for the team’s safety position became clearer with he, Caden Sterns returning, and with the new addition of Brandon Jones, where all three players played for the Texas Longhorns.

“Last season, I think he began to create that vision for himself, to his credit,” Sean Payton said earlier this week at OTAs. “[He was] closer to the ball as a pressure player, also in coverage. [It is] great to see him out there healthy. I think he earned some of those snaps and the confidence level for him. He’s one of the players when I talk about, ‘You see confidence through demonstrated.’ He saw it and felt it and then we saw it. It’s pretty powerful. He’s smart and he’s tough. The first time I remember talking to him for a long time about his role was when we were on a plane to go to [former S] Justin [Simmons]’s father’s funeral and his grandmother’s funeral. [S] P.J. Locke was on that plane, and we had a long conversation about that. Those are snaps he’s earned, and he’s put himself in a good position.”

Locke is now in a position to further establish himself as a household name going forward and still has a chip on his shoulder, even though he’s one of the Broncos’ anticipated starters.

“I feel like I still have a chip on my shoulder,” Locke said. “I have some personal goals that I’m not going to discuss that I want to accomplish. Those are the things that keep me hungry and I still have the mindset of proving it to myself. There is no slack cut at if whether I have stability or not. It’s all intrinsic motivation for me.”

Locke is an exciting piece of the Denver Broncos defense as the team now prepares to head into mandatory minicamp next week.