Did not practice: TE Austin Fort (knee, fourth consecutive missed practice).
Returned to practice: WR Juwann Winfree (groin, missed the last two practices) in a limited capacity.
Was it a catch or not a catch? QB Drew Lock’s final pass of practice was tipped by CB A.J. Bouye and appeared to be intercepted by S Justin Simmons in-bounds. But K Brandon McManus, fashioning himself as an official, signaled incomplete. “I think it was an interception,” Bouye said. “We’re going to look at the film.”
Red zone drill. The Broncos ended their fourth practice with their first red zone period of camp. And it’s a perfect way to end the day in a competitive situation. TE Albert Okwuegbunam caught two touchdowns.
OLB Justin Hollins. During 1-on-1 pass rush/protection drills, Hollins beat LT Calvin Anderson twice and LT Hunter Watts once. Watts rebounded to win their next matchup.
OL communication. The 1-on-1 period featured pass-rush stunts and the line appeared to hold up well in switching assignments after the snap.
Pass protection. QB Drew Lock’s first four drop-backs in 11-on-11: Scramble (would have been a sack by NT Mike Purcell), aborted play (would have been a sack by OLBs Von Miller/Bradley Chubb), throwaway (would have been a sack by Miller) and aborted play.
RB Phillip Lindsay. He had a fumble and a dropped pass and was noticeably stewing on the sideline. “That’s just Phillip being Phillip,” coach Vic Fangio said. “He’s a very competitive guy. He’s a very demanding guy on himself. And if he doesn’t make a play he feels he should make or fumbles — obviously, you should never do that — he takes it personal and I don’t mind a guy getting fiery at himself or others at all. If I think it’s becoming a detriment and not helping his cause, then I’ll say something, but I don’t see that being the case.”
Odds and ends
- The Broncos’ second day in pads featured 53 plays of 11-on-11 and one 7-on-7 period.
- QB Drew Lock’s day: To end the second 11-on-11 period, he completed a wheel route to RB Melvin Gordon (diving catch) and avoided a “sack” by DE Dre’Mont Jones to find WR Courtland Sutton. In the red zone period, his over-the-middle pass had too much heat on it for WR Jerry Jeudy to handle. RB Phillip Lindsay’s drop came on a Lock throw to the left flat.
- Out of necessity, Lock showed the ability to scramble up in the pocket or out of the pocket while keeping his eyes downfield. “As you saw some of those times and obviously we’ll never know if we would have gotten him down before he took off, but Drew’s mobility and scrambling ability are important,” coach Vic Fangio said.
- TE Albert Okwuegbunam, getting a shot to play with Lock, dropped a pass during 11-on-11, but ended practice with a nice catch on a skinny post in the red zone, leaving his feet and snatching QB Jeff Driskel’s pass. “He’s showed the ability to catch it, routine or not routine,” Fangio said. “But we can’t afford any drops, obviously.”
- It was a heavy run-game practice for the Broncos. Against the second-team offense, ILB Josey Jewell did a nice job filling his gap to thud RB LeVante Bellamy. Later, OLB Jeremiah Attaochu beat RT Jake Rodgers to stop RB Royce Freeman. “Run defense/run offense, it’s a very physical part of the game,” Fangio said. “We’ve got to get our guys calloused to playing NFL football. It’s a mindset.”
- Takeaways by the defense in 11-on-11: CB De’Vante Bausby intercepted Driskel on a “go” route against WR Tyrie Cleveland. S Alijah Holder was on the spot to intercept Driskel when it appeared Okwuegbunam lost his balance. And the maybe interception by S Justin Simmons against Lock. CB Essang Bassey had a pass break-up.
- Cleveland did a nice job to catch a long back shoulder pass from Driskel, using his body to wall off CB Issac Yiadom.
- Count Bouye as being impressed by Jeudy and fellow rookie WR KJ Hamler. “Being in the league for a while, I’ve seen a lot of rookie receivers and it seems like they come in and don’t have it figured out, but you can see those two … they’re really polished in their routes, especially Jeudy. He never gives you the same look and I’m loving going against him because he’s going to keep me true in my technique.”
- Highlights from the pass rush/protection 1-on-1s: C Lloyd Cushenberry held off DL McTelvin Agim (twice), DL DeShawn Williams (twice) before losing to DE Dre’Mont Jones. … RT Demar Dotson beat OLB Derrek Tuszka, but lost matchups to OLB Malik Reed (bull rush) and Attaochu. … G Tyler Jones won against DE DeMarcus Walker, NT Christian Covington and Williams. … Tuszka used a spin move to beat RT Quinn Bailey. … Agim used a swim move to get by G Netane Muti. … LT Garett Bolles easily detoured Attaochu’s outside rush attempt.