The Denver Broncos don't put their full pads on until Tuesday but they're already a banged-up bunch.
Newly signed receiver Corey "Philly" Brown is in concussion protocol after hitting his head in the weight room and when the Broncos put on shoulder pads for the first time Monday several players hobbled off.
"Football is played in pads Charles Clay Jersey , so to put the pads on and watch the guys bang a little bit is always fun," coach Vance Joseph said. "For the running game, and obviously stopping the run, the pads are critical."
Left tackle Garett Bolles and inside linebacker Brandon Marshall were among the casualties Monday.
"Garett Bolles took a shot to the chin. He's being evaluated for a head injury," Joseph said, adding that Marshall "had a minor wrist injury. He's OK."
Cornerback Marcos Rios sat out with a sore hip and tight end Jeff Heuerman sat out with a sore knee, which Joseph said was strictly precautionary.
The Broncos are also dealing with second-year wide receiver Carlos Henderson, who failed to report to training camp while dealing with what the team calls a family situation.
Although Joseph has said it's up to Henderson whether his career will continue, several members of the organization are keeping in touch with their absent teammate.
"Lots of guys have called Carlos. (Wide Receivers) Coach Zach (Azzanni) has been calling him, I've been calling Carlos, his teammates have been," Joseph said. "Obviously, he's having some family issues he's working through and it's really his timeline.
"He can return any time he gets ready to return. It's on him, but his guys are supporting him William Hayes Jersey , the coaches are supporting him. So we're looking forward to having him back."
Henderson was a third-round draft pick out of Louisiana Tech last year but he missed his rookie season with a hand injury. He missed much of the offseason program this year with a pulled hamstring and is a long-shot to even make the 53-man roster if he does return.
Joseph said he has no timeline for Henderson to get back.
"We've had some conversations about other things than football. He's not ready for football right now, so we're not talking about football a lot," Joseph said. "We're doing a good job as a team of checking on him on a daily basis."
Things should ratchet up overall Tuesday when the Broncos also wear their thigh pads.
"Any time we're full pads, it's like game day," Joseph said. "Every pad's on, mouth guard, chin straps buckled, so it'll look different as far as what they're wearing, but the practice shouldn't look that much different as far as the physical part of it."
Nose tackle Domata Peko, for one, appreciated finally getting to do some hitting in the trenches Monday.
"That what it's about, you know? We don't play without shoulder pads, so when you get them on that's when you really get to get real physical and do your job," Peko said. "Especially up front. In the trenches Bobby Hebert Jersey , you've got to have the pads on and feel that contact to see where you're at and sharpen each other up.
"It was a good first day of shells today. They call it shells, and then full pads tomorrow, but in the trenches, every time we put the pads on it's pretty much full pads. It felt good today."
The Broncos will also be in full pads Wednesday.
FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) — Even as he enters his fourth season, Tevin Coleman is still taking notes from Falcons teammate Devonta Freeman on all the basics that go with being an NFL running back.
How to run. How to catch. How to block.
How to make teammates smile.
In training camp, Freeman’s contagious personality may be one of his biggest strengths. His ever-present smile can be a mood-lifter during long, hot practice days.
“It’s definitely effective,” Coleman said after Saturday’s practice. “Just having him here and bringing in the energy and getting other guys motivated to compete and work hard, just his presence here lightens everybody up. I like that.”
Freeman is especially upbeat this camp. He is relishing his return to good health following a sometimes scary 2017 season.
Freeman suffered two concussions last year. He spent the last two weeks of the preseason in concussion protocol before suffering another concussion against Dallas on Nov. 12 that forced him to miss two games. A sprained right knee cut into his production late in the season.
Now Freeman, 26, is feeling good. He’s an important part of an offense that is looking to return to its form of 2016, when it led the league in scoring.
“What more can I ask for?” Freeman asked earlier this week. “My dream job is football and I get to play. I come to work and play football every day. That’s it.”
Coleman said Freeman is “happy to feel good, happy to be here with his brothers Amara Darboh Jersey , happy to compete.”
Coach Dan Quinn says Freeman’s tough demeanor in practice shows that he loves the game, especially in training camp.
“He’s such a competitor,” Quinn said Saturday. “He has the personality among his teammates. They love him. They love what he stands for on the field, off the field, in the locker room. He is one of constant support. His makeup and mentality, based on toughness and competing, this is his kind of environment.”
Added Quinn: “We truly celebrate guys like Free who live that lifestyle.”
Quinn immediately noticed a change in Freeman early in camp.
“It is awesome to see Free back, feeling like himself,” he said.
Freeman was one of the first players to catch the attention of Quinn, then a first-year coach, in 2015. The coach immediately talked about Freeman’s skills as a runner and receiver, and the running back’s breakout season lived up to the hype.
Freeman ranked fifth in the NFL with 1,634 combined rushing and receiving yards in 2015 and was first with 14 all-purpose touchdowns.
He added another 1,000-yard rushing season in 2016. Even while missing two games last year Carl Banks Jersey , he ran for 865 yards with seven touchdowns and had 36 catches for 317 yards.
Most running backs would be happy with 36 catches, but for Freeman it was a big drop from 2015, when he caught 73 passes for 578 yards.
Freeman hopes he and Coleman have more targets from quarterback Matt Ryan in the second year with offensive coordinator Steve Sarkasian.
“I think we’ve got enough talent to be utilized in the passing game,” he said. “We need to take advantage of that.”
NOTES: The Falcons had their fourth annual military day, welcoming soldiers from Fort Benning in Columbus, Georgia, and 24 families from the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors who have lost a loved one in the military. “It was a great way for us to pay tribute back to them,” Quinn said. … A German TV crew, on a tour of at least eight NFL training camps, visited the Falcons and plans to return when Atlanta hosts this season’s Super Bowl. “It would be a perfect scenario if the home team could reach the Super Bowl,” said Christoph Dommisch of 7Sports. Dommisch and other members of the crew wore traditional lederhosen — shorts and suspenders.
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