Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Broncos retired All-Pro trains at Russell Wilson workouts, fueling speculation

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Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson and a number of teammates trained at the veteran quarterback’s home in San Diego, California. Both rookies and veterans are lining up for Broncos training camp July 26 in Englewood, Colorado.

Wilson posted a group photo of the Broncos players at the training session.

Players include backup quarterbacks Brett Rypien and Josh Johnson, tight ends Albert Okwuegbunam and Eric Sauber, wide receivers Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy, Courtland Sutton, Tim Patrick, KJ Hamler, Travis Fulgham, Tyrie Cleveland, Montrell Washington, Kendall Hinton and center Lloyd Cushenberry.

However, if you can squint your eyes, former Broncos wide receiver Brandon Marshall was also present at the training session. Wilson was Marshall’s teammate during the 2018 season in Seattle. Marshall caught his final touchdown pass from Wilson against the Broncos in the season opener.

Marshall was drafted by the Broncos in the fourth round of the 2006 NFL Draft. He reached the Pro Bowl twice during his tenure in Denver. In 2010, after four seasons in Denver, the Broncos traded Marshall to the Miami Dolphins for second-round picks in the 2010 and 2011 drafts.

He would earn four more Pro Bowls and two All-Pro selections, and play for five more NFL franchises. Marshall finished his career with 970 catches for 12,351 yards and 83 touchdowns in 13 seasons. An eight-time 1,000-yard receiver, he is 23rd all-time in receiving yards.

With less than a week until the start of the training camp, Marshall’s visit caused quite a stir on social media.

The 38-year-old has been a co-host on Inside the NFL since 2014 when he was still an active player in the league. He is also the founder of i am an athlete Podcast, an unscripted and uncensored weekly show hosted by Marshall and former Pro Bowl wide receiver Chad Johnson.

It’s likely Marshall will simply bond with former teammate Wilson and train the young bucks as well. But despite being out of the league for more than three years, Marshall appears to be on form.

Sayre Bedingerthe host of “Fixed on Broncos” podcast, brought up the option to shoot Marshall as a tight end,

Bedinger wasn’t the only one wondering if Marshall had any juice left in the tank.

Wilson also posted a video of Marshall training the wide receivers with the quarterback’s stepson, Future.

Broncos Twitter likes Marshall coaching the Broncos wide receiver core.

In any case, Marshall is highly unlikely to make a football comeback.

Bendinger mentioned the tight end group when discussing Marshall taking a position with the Broncos in 2022. After Noah Fant was sent to the Seahawks in a trade with Russell Wilson, the Broncos’ tight end group is led by Okwuegbunam.

Last season, Okwuegbunam showed starting quality traits. He caught 33 receptions of his 40 goals for 330 yards and his 72.5 PFF receiving score ranked 14th among tight ends in the NFL.

The Broncos’ tight end depth chart is full-bodied. Third-round pick Greg Dulcich is likely the team’s second tight end, with Eric Tomlinson, Andrew Beck, Eric Saubert and undrafted free agents Dylan Parham and Rodney Williams battling for spots.

However, the Broncos lack pass-catching experience in the narrow final position after Okwuegbunam. And Okwuegbunam is still only two years old.

Marshall is highly unlikely to attempt a comeback in football. It’s possible Marshall will pursue a coaching career. We recently saw retired Pro Bowl wide receivers Hines Ward and former Broncos player Wes Welker make the transition to coaching.

However, it will be interesting to see if the Broncos add an experienced pass catcher to the tight end group.

Last season, Okwuegbunam showed starting quality traits. He caught 33 receptions of his 40 goals for 330 yards and his 72.5 PFF receiving score ranked 14th among tight ends in the NFL.

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