ENGLEWOOD – Why should anyone believe?
The Broncos were 5-11 last year. The front office is the same. They have the same head coach most of the same players.
Why should anyone believe the Broncos will be different in 2018?
“We made the changes as far as the football team goes, putting players where they need to be,’’ said defensive end Derek Wolfe. “We got a whole new special teams. Nothing against Brock (Olivo) but we got a whole new attitude on our special teams.’’
Indeed, Tom McMahon brings NFL experience as a special teams coordinator. Wolfe was just getting started.
“We got a new quarterback (Case Keenum),’’ he said. “Our offense has a leader now that’s going to be out there. Not that Trevor (Siemian) wasn’t a good leader. But we’ve got somebody who’s experienced in leading a football team. And you saw what kind of work he did in Minnesota. …
“It’s just about the attitude. Last year, we felt like we're going into the same old thing: Defense was going to pick up a lot of the slack, this and that. Now our competition is great. It’s not one-sided anymore.”
Peko or bust
The Broncos made no offseason changes at nose tackle. Their 3-4 defense still has 33-year-old Domata Peko Sr. – “but in Samoan years I’m 23,’’ he said – and his young cousin Kyle Peko as the only players listed at the point.
The Broncos added rotational defensive end Clinton McDonald from free agency. But the team didn’t sign or draft a defensive tackle.
“Even coach Bill (Kollar) was saying, ‘All the rookies come with me.’ Then he goes, ‘We don’t have any rookies,’’’ Domata Peko said, smiling. “It just shows that the front office has a lot of faith in us. I take that as a compliment, but I’m also really excited to go out there, continue to play well and play at a high level for my team and for our city.”
No Paradis contract talks, yet
It didn’t happen right away, but in the past two years, the Broncos gave multiyear contract extensions to restricted free agents Brandon Marshall and Brandon McManus before the start of the season.
Matt Paradis, the Broncos’ starting center for going on four years, is a restricted free agent now, playing on a one-year, $2.9 million contract.
Talks to keep Paradis around past this season have not yet begun.
“Not to my knowledge,’’ Paradis said. “I think we’re looking to do that at some point. I would absolutely like that, but I’m pretty focused on the team, myself and playing football.”