Shark Bites

Broncos WR Demaryius Thomas conceded to The Denver Post this week that a hip issue bothered him for much of last season. “It was tough. Sometimes I couldn’t stop. Sometimes I couldn’t run certain routes that I wanted to run. Sometimes I couldn’t get off press (coverage) because I had no power in it,” Thomas said. “It wasn’t my excuse. I was out there trying to help my teammates out and trying to make it not look bad on my part.” He didn't miss any games, but Thomas did post a career low in yards per reception, along with his fewest catches and TDs in his 5 seasons as a full-time starter. Thomas had no surgery in the offseason but said that the hip feels great right now. He also intimated that a hit to the wrong spot could force a recurrence. There's bounce-back potential as long as Thomas' offseason continues to go well, and he's going in value range in early drafting. We'll certainly keep an eye on the hip into the season.

Broncos WR Demaryius Thomas is happy to have OC Mike McCoy back in the building. DT played under McCoy from 2010 to 2012. That final season produced a breakout 94-1,434-10 line -- albeit with Peyton Manning under center. Thomas is especially excited to get the ball in his hands more often on WR screens. Those helped him rank 2nd among WRs with 561 yards after the catch back in 2012. That number sunk to 336 last year -- 25th at his position. Still in his prime at 29, Thomas is certainly capable of matching or even besting last year's 16th-place PPR finish this season. He's been the 19th WR off the board in recent MFL10 drafts.

Broncos HC Vance Joseph said Monday that RB C.J. Anderson (knee) is ready for the start of OTAs. He's about 5-and-a-half months removed from surgery to repair a torn meniscus. Anderson mustered just 4.0 yards per carry in 7 games before going down last year. But RB Devontae Booker was worse, averaging 3.5 for the season. Denver only added RB Bernard Pierce in free agency. We'll see what they do in the draft. For now, Anderson is the favorite for lead-back duties.

Broncos HC Vance Joseph said this week that it's not yet clear whether RB C.J. Anderson will be ready for spring OTAs. “I’m not sure,’’ Joseph said, per ESPN's Jeff Legwold. “He’s working in that direction. He’s there every day working, so hopefully. But, he’s a veteran player. If he’s working in OTAs in the middle part of it, we’ll be fine with him in the fall.’’ Anderson had October surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee. We'll keep an eye on his offseason progress, though returning by training camp will be much more significant than any OTA action he might or might not see. Anderson's RB16 price in early MFL10 drafting looks too high, however.

What was originally believed to be a Grade 3 shoulder separation for Broncos QB Trevor Siemian turned out to be a Grade 5 injury. When he went under the knife in January, his doctor discovered torn ligaments where the clavicle, scapula and AC joint connect. Siemian was slapped with a 4-6 month recovery timeline but still expects to be ready for the start of OTAs in May. He's slated to compete for the starting job with 2016 first-rounder Paxton Lynch. It's certainly worth noting that Siemian played through the serious shoulder injury for much of this past season after it occurred in Week 4.

The Broncos have hired Mike McCoy as their new OC. It's a homecoming after McCoy spent the 2009-2012 seasons in the same role. His QBs during that stretch ranged from Kyle Orton to Tim Tebow to Peyton Manning. McCoy was able to coax top-15 finishes in total yards and passing yards out of the Orton-led squads. With Tebow in 2011, Denver ranked 1st in rushing attempts and yards but 31st in passing and 23rd in total offense. McCoy's 2012 season with Manning produced a #4 finish in total yards and #2 in points. McCoy struggled as the Chargers' HC for the past 4 years, producing a 27-37 record (although injuries did him no favors). All 4 of those squads led by QB Philip Rivers ranked top 10 in passing yards. McCoy is widely regarded as 1 of the better offensive minds in the game, so this is a nice hire for Denver. He seems to lean toward a pass-heavy attack but has shown the willingness and ability to adjust his scheme. We'll see what he has in mind for this Broncos attack.

The Broncos have hired Vance Joseph as their new HC. The 44-year-old spent the 2016 season as the Dolphins' defensive coordinator after numerous stops as a defensive backs coach in both college and the pros. We'll see who he brings aboard to run the offense.

Broncos QB Trevor Siemian will undergo surgery on his left (non-throwing) shoulder this week. “It’s optional surgery," Siemian said. “It really only bothers me when I work out but I figure I’m going to have to keep working out for a while so I’m getting it fixed." He's expected to be ready for the start of the offseason program in April, so this shouldn't be something that impacts his 2017 outlook. Siemian will battle with Paxton Lynch (and perhaps an offseason addition) for the starting job this summer.

Broncos WR Emmanuel Sanders suffered a foot injury in the 1st half of Sunday's game against the Raiders and will not return. He went without a catch before exiting. We should get an update on Sanders' injury tomorrow.

Broncos LB Brandon Marshall (hamstring) is inactive for today's game against the Raiders. He's a weak IDP option, though. S T.J. Ward was previously ruled out with a concussion.

ESPN reports that Broncos HC Gary Kubiak will likely step down within the next week because of health concerns. Kubiak was hospitalized earlier this season after the game against Atlanta with a "complex migraine," the 2nd time in the past 2 seasons that health issues landed him in the hospital. We'll see who the next coach is and how that might affect everyone's fantasy outlooks. (The QB situation should be particularly interesting, with incumbent Trevor Siemian and 1st-rounder Paxton Lynch on hand.) For today, Denver players might find a little extra motivation in trying to send Kubiak out with a victory -- assuming he has confirmed to them whether he's leaving.

Broncos insider Mike Klis hears that QB Trevor Siemian will start Sunday's finale against the Raiders but that QB Paxton Lynch will also play. It makes sense for Denver to get a look at both guys -- against the same opponent -- heading into the offseason. Siemian and Lynch figure to battle for the 2017 starting job next summer. Neither guy is a Week 17 fantasy option.

Broncos DE Derek Wolfe (neck) is active for tonight's game against the Chiefs. He's fine to use as you normally would in your IDP league.

The Broncos have ruled S T.J. Ward (concussion) and LB Brandon Marshall (hamstring) out for Sunday night's game against the Chiefs. DE Derek Wolfe is also questionable with an illness. He also aggravated a neck injury in Sunday's loss to the Patriots. The team will re-evaluate him Saturday, according to The Denver Post. With most of the league playing that day and just 1 game following Denver-K.C., most IDP owners should probably opt for another D-line option.

Broncos TEs A.J. Derby and Virgil Green will both miss Sunday’s game against the Chiefs with concussions. Jeff Heuerman will operate as Denver’s lead TE but isn’t a fantasy option.

Broncos S T.J. Ward joined the injury report Wednesday with a concussion. He played all but 2 defensive snaps in Sunday's loss to the Patriots and did postgame interviews, so the symptoms must have arisen later. We'll see if Ward can make it through the protocol in time to play this weekend, but he's a low-level IDP option in an exciting matchup for DB scoring with the Chiefs.

Broncos TEs A.J. Derby and Virgil Green both sustained concussions in Sunday's loss to the Patriots. Jeff Heuerman will operate as Denver's lead TE this coming weekend if neither guy is cleared. But none of these guys will be a Week 16 fantasy option vs. Kansas City's tough TE defense.

Broncos DE Derek Wolfe left Sunday's game early with a neck injury and did not return. We'll see what his outlook is for next Sunday night's game at Kansas City.

Broncos ILB Todd Davis (rib cage) is active for today's game against the Patriots, giving Denver 1 of its 2 ILB starters. (Brandon Marshall is out.) Davis is a low-level IDP option at full health. He carries tackle upside against an offense likely to run LeGarrette Blount a lot, but there's also durability risk with the rib injury.

Broncos WR Demaryius Thomas drew a team-high 16 targets in Sunday's loss to the Titans. He caught 10 of them for 126 yards. Denver got nothing from it's run game and figures to need to lean on the pass heavily in upcoming matchups with the Patriots, Chiefs and Raiders. This marked the 2nd straight game of 10+ targets for Thomas and 7th among his past 8 contests.

 
 
 

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