The top two rushers from 2012 haven’t been taking part in offseason work for the Broncos, leaving plenty for rookie Montee Ball to do as he transitions to the professional game.
He’s getting some help from a pretty experienced teammate. Quarterback Peyton Manning has been spending time after practices with Ball to work on various aspects of the offense and even made sure that Ball was in his foursome during a team golf outing this week. It’s all because Manning knows that Ball is in line for a big role on the offense.
“We’re just kind of going through plays, going through games, getting him comfortable hearing audibles at the line of scrimmage. Because we are going to count on him in a big way this year,” Manning said, via Lindsay Jones of USA Today. “He’s a rookie, but coach [John] Fox isn’t going to bring him along slowly.”
Willis McGahee and Knowshon Moreno are both recovering from knee injuries suffered last season, but Ball could well remain ahead of them even if they show up to camp in perfect condition. McGahee is signed through 2014 and has a base salary of $2.5 million in 2013, which could make him expendable if Ball is able to pick things up quickly. Moreno is probably just about out of chances after years of injuries and ineffectiveness, which makes it all the easier to understand why Manning is doing all he can to get Ball up to speed right away.