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Del Rio compares Von Miller to Peter Boulware

Von Miller Pic Getty Images

Broncos 2011 first-round pick Von Miller played strong-side linebacker on early downs and defensive end in pass-rushing situations as a rookie. He produced 11.5 sacks and a pair of forced fumbles en route to Defensive Rookie of the Year honors.

Gone is 2011 defensive coordinator Dennis Allen, and ex-Jaguars head coach Jack Del Rio has arrived as the Broncos’ new defensive shot-caller. Will Miller’s role change?

Based on the player to which Del Rio compares Miller, we’re guessing not.

“So Peter Boulware is the guy that comes to mind,” Del Rio said, per Jeff Legwold of the Denver Post. “Von’s going to be a very productive player for a long time.”

A four-time Pro Bowler with the Ravens, Boulware was a ferocious, hybrid pass rusher in his heyday, and Del Rio was his position coach for three years in Baltimore. In the middle year (2000), the Ravens fielded perhaps the best defense in the history of the game. In Boulware and Del Rio’s final year together (2001), Boulware exploded for 15 sacks and four forced fumbles in essentially the exact same position Miller played with the Broncos last year.

Del Rio left to become Carolina’s defensive coordinator the following year, and Boulware never reached those levels of greatness again.

Miller might already be just as good of a player as Boulware in his prime. Which means that Del Rio’s tried-and-true scheme plus improved offense that will allow for more pass-rush opportunities could turn Miller into an even more lethal defender in his second season.

Scary.

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11 Responses to “Del Rio compares Von Miller to Peter Boulware”
  1. sportsfannn says: Jun 2, 2012 11:12 AM

    the two of them sound like a good match. scary for the rest of the league if Del Rio gets even MORE out of Miller.

  2. denverdave3 says: Jun 2, 2012 11:16 AM

    Von may be “productive”, but unless they get somebody who knows how to execute a draft, they are going to be 8-8 or worse for the next 5 years. Elway needs to learn about “value”

  3. pantherstimes says: Jun 2, 2012 11:18 AM

    I hate what happened in Carolina with Foxy, and I partly blame Fox as well as Richardson for that whole debacle, but having him and Del Rio on the same sideline again is a scary combination.

  4. greglloydrules says: Jun 2, 2012 11:25 AM

    Von Miller is going to be a very good player for a long time. Peter Boulware was good not great. Good comparison. The only difference is that Boulware was much taller. The man was a tree.

  5. raqaiw says: Jun 2, 2012 11:59 AM

    @greglloydrules:
    I agree that if he stays healthy, Miller will be good for a long time,however I disagree that Boulware wasn’t great. He only played 8 years,but had 70 sacks. You don’t get to the QB that many times being just “good”. Compare James Harrison of the steelers who’s started every game(when healthy) since ’07 and he only has 51 sacks in that timeframe. Ware is the gold standard for LB/DE and he has 100 in 6 years, so 70 in 8 is pretty excellent. As a side note,the guy who replaced Boulware was even better, he got 83 sacks in his first 8 years. It’s crazy how some teams can draft guys like that(Steelers,Ravens,Giants) but other teams whiff so badly.

  6. JaminJake says: Jun 2, 2012 12:08 PM

    I just shudder to think what he could do with Miller and Dumervil.

  7. objectivenflfan says: Jun 2, 2012 12:18 PM

    Even scarier is the thought of Elvis Dumervil playing on the other side. They’ll get to the passer. Denver’s defense is quietly shaping up this offseason and on paper it looks like a big year is possible.

    Jack Del Rio, Drayton Florence, Tracey Porter, and Mike Adams (who is highly underrated) are all upgrades to the unit.

    Oh, and adding Big East Defensive Player of the year in Derek Wolfe in the 2nd is plenty of value, especially considering what Denver has at DT.

  8. bandanamac says: Jun 2, 2012 1:41 PM

    @greglloydrules

    Take off the black and gold glasses if you think Boulware wasn’t great. If he wasn’t decimated by injuries he’d be on his way to the Hall. The man was a monster.

  9. chrisjohnston10 says: Jun 2, 2012 2:36 PM

    I didn’t watch a lot of Von Miller last season. All I remember was watching Von get a beatdown by the Patriots OLine after he cheap shot Dan Connolly after Tom Brady punted the ball.

  10. JaminJake says: Jun 2, 2012 6:18 PM

    chrisjohnston10 says:
    Jun 2, 2012 2:36 PM
    I didn’t watch a lot of Von Miller last season. All I remember was watching Von get a beatdown by the Patriots OLine after he cheap shot Dan Connolly after Tom Brady punted the ball.

    ______________________________

    That’s funny. All I remember from last season was 2007 all over again.

    Mind your manners.

  11. randallflagg52 says: Jun 2, 2012 8:09 PM

    Peter Boulware was a beast and was a great player FYI.

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