Denver Broncos training camp launched Thursday in the sweltering heat and fans were treated to their first look at several new Broncos and the team as a whole.
The practice — as compared to previous years — felt like it had a faster pace to it and saw lots of seven-on-seven scrimmage play, as well as the individualized drills.
Rookie quarterback Drew Lock dazzled early, threading needles and throwing into some very tight windows early. Lock’s deep touchdown throw to newly converted wide receiver Brendan Langley got the crowd cheering early.
Isaac Yiadom impressed early with an interception on a poorly thrown deep ball down the right sideline off Joe Flacco. Flacco overall on the day did have several impressive throws and some real zip, particularly down the middle.
Courtland Sutton dealt with some early frustration drops and put in extra work on the sideline with fellow 2018 rookie DaeSean Hamilton. After practice, Jake Butt was also noted getting extra work in, looking to stand out in a now crowded tight-end room with Jeff Heuerman, a healthy Troy Fumagalli and first-round draft pick Noah Fant after a key drop as well.
One of the biggest headlines didn’t come from the field at all. It came from the crowd, which was very sparse for the first training camp of the year, something that usually in the past has been packed to the gills.
The crowd is extremely sparse for #Broncos debut of training camp. Not sure if that's because it's Thursday morning, 11 wins in the last two years or if it's because it's supposed to be 100 outside today.
— Ronnie Kohrt (@RonnieKRadio) July 18, 2019
The heat may very well have been the main reason, however, the low attendance could also be a temperature reading of fans and disappointment of only 11 wins in the past two years.
A lot of attention was rightfully on the Broncos quarterbacks and the offense and the way Vic Fangio structured practice today. But the most noticeable thing to me was the very sparse crowd on the grassy berm. Byproduct of back-to-back losing seasons? Or something else?
— Nicki Jhabvala (@NickiJhabvala) July 18, 2019
Lock had a very impressive day overall in a day where until Wednesday afternoon, wasn’t signed to his rookie deal. After practice, Lock said he took control of negotiations and that ‘there was no chance we were going to go on with it’ if it got to the point where he was missing time and practices.
In the end, Drew Lock took control of his negotiations: "I told my agency beforehand that if it got to the point where I was missing practice, there was no chance we were going to go on with it.'' He made up conditioning. "Missing anything else is not who I am." #9sports
— Mike Klis (@MikeKlis) July 18, 2019
What we learned:
- Kevin Hogan took reps with the No. 2 team at quarterback.
- The Denver Broncos signed free-agent wide receiver Steven Dunbar Jr. on Thursday.
- Todd Davis left the field towards the end of practice with what was called a deemed an injured right ankle/foot. Davis is getting additional tests (X-ray, MRI) on injured right ankle/foot.
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