Running back Melvin Gordon rushed for 78, 70 and 26 yards in the Broncos’ first three games last year. Coming off his first traditional training camp in three years, he is looking for more personal and team success out of the gate.
“Us having a true training camp really made a difference,” Gordon said Wednesday. “We’ve been out here going after each other and (practicing) for a while. I think we’re prepared and ready and I’m definitely more mentally focused and locked in just because I want to start the season off better as a unit.
“You don’t want to get behind the eight-ball.”
The Broncos started 0-4 in ’19 and 0-3 last year.
Gordon held out of the Los Angeles Chargers’ ‘19 camp and last year’s preseason was eliminated because of the pandemic. He rushed five times for 35 yards in the Broncos’ Aug. 28 exhibition win over the Los Angeles Rams, his only game activity last month.
Injury report. Outside linebacker Bradley Chubb (ankle) did not practice. He moved to a side field after taking the team stretch.
“Bradley’s ankle is still troubling him some,” coach Vic Fangio said before practice.
Tight end Noah Fant (leg) was listed as limited.
Giants tight end Evan Engram (calf) did not practice and running back Saquon Barkley (knee) was one of 10 players who were limited participants. Barkley is returning from a torn ACL and did not play in the preseason. The Broncos are preparing as if he will play.
“He’s equally effective getting the ball handed off to him or having it thrown to him,” Fangio said. “He’s a dual threat as a running back and he’s one of the top running backs in the league. He’s a chore to handle.”
According to Elias, Barkley is one of four players in the past 30 years to have at least 2,000 yards rushing (2,344) and 1,000 yards receiving (1,219) in their first 31 games, joining Le’Veon Bell, Arian Foster and Edgerrin James.
Age breakdown. The industry website Over The Cap analyzed each team’s 53-man roster and figured the Broncos’ average age was 25.94 years (20th-oldest in the NFL). The Broncos have nine players over the age of 30 (tied for 10th-most).
The oldest team is Arizona (27.31 years), the youngest is Carolina (25.45) and the Cardinals have the most players older than 30 (16) and the Rams have the fewest (three).
McCain to Eagles. Broncos practice squad cornerback Mac McCain III was signed to Philadelphia’s 53-man roster on Tuesday. McCain’s chances of making the Broncos’ roster were compromised by a hamstring injury that cost him eight practices and the first two preseason games.
“That was part of it,” Fangio said. “Mac didn’t play football last year and came from a lower-level (Division I-AA North Carolina A&T) and his exposure to the type of stuff you do in the NFL was limited and he just needed some time (to develop).”
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