Devontae Booker listed as No.1 RB on Broncos depth chart
After the NFL Draft, OTA’s and the lead-up to the start of Training Camp, most ‘experts’ we’re high on the Royce Freeman train–the rookie out of Oregon was reportedly the favorite to land the lead back role in Denver.
Not so fast. The Broncos released their first depth chart of the year and it features Devontae Booker in the top slot. Freeman is No. 2 with De’Angelo Henderson, Dave Williams and Phillip Lindsay making up the rest of the group.
Booker, a fourth-round pick in 2016, ran 79 times for 299 yards and a touchdown last year while also catching 30 passes for 275 yards. Freeman was a third-round pick in April after setting several career records during his time at Oregon.
The competition will continue for the rest of the summer and it seems likely that, regardless of pecking order, both Booker and Freeman will be seeing a good amount of playing time come the fall.
Royce Freeman is being drafted a lot earlier than Booker, owing an ADP of 76th overall (on average a 7th-8th round pick). Booker presents a lot more value, especially if he keeps the No.1 back role–his current ADP is 116th overall (so an 11th or 12th round pick).
With those differences, Booker is actually a better value pick at this point in the summer–but the rumblings will be there that Freeman is the future and will eventually beat out Booker for the job.
Either way, a time share seems likely. Do not sleep on Phillip Lindsay, who was a do-it-all back at Colorado and could be the best pass blocker in the running back group.
Preseason games and the rest of Training Camp will hopefully give a clearer picture of the Broncos backfield leading up til Week 1–but don’t overdraft any Denver back this year–it’s just not worth it.
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