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Broncos lose Hollins to Rams, former coach

Denver also sets its 16-man practice squad, which includes QB Rypien and former Bears CB Toliver.
Credit: AP
LB Justin Hollins [L] and DB Kevin Toliver II [R]

Call Justin Hollins the biggest surprise of the Broncos’ roster cuts Saturday.

Evidence came Sunday when the second-year outside linebacker was claimed off waivers by the Los Angeles Rams.

Hollins was a Broncos’ fifth-round draft pick last year who played in 15 games. He played both inside and outside linebacker and continued to play both in the recently concluded training camp.

When he was at outside linebacker, his coach last year was Brandon Staley. Staley is now the defensive coordinator for the Los Angeles Rams.

Ding! Ding! Ding!

Hollins was claimed by the Rams. None of the other waived Broncos were claimed. The Broncos in turn didn’t place a waiver claim on a player, which might speak to their improved overall talent depth from a year ago.

Last year, the Broncos were awarded four players off waivers.

The Broncos signed 15 of the players they cut Saturday back to their 16-man practice squad Sunday. The 16th player will be former Bears cornerback Kevin Toliver, who played for Broncos head coach Vic Fangio and defensive back Ed Donatell when they were with the Bears in 2018. Toliver, who was one of the Bears’ most notable cuts Saturday, will have to go through COVID testing and pass a physical exam before joining the Broncos this week.

The Broncos’ 16-man practice squad:

OFFENSE (9)

QB Brett Rypien

OT Jake Rodgers

OT Quinn Bailey

OT Darrin Paulo

C-G Patrick Morris

WR Fred Brown

WR Trinity Benson

RB LeVante Bellamy

FB Jeremy Cox

DEFENSE (7)

CB De’Vante Bausby

DL DeShawn Williams

S Alijah Holder

S P.J. Locke

LB Josh Watson

OLB Derrek Tuszka

CB Kevin Toliver*

(*Once he passes COVID testing and physical)

Among the players the Broncos didn’t bring back to their practice squad was second-year receiver Juwann Winfree, who a year ago was a sixth-round draft pick out of Colorado.

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