Broncos In The NFL: 2015
Sept. 9, 2015
BOISE, Idaho - The 2015 NFL campaign gets underway Thursday night, and once again Boise State will be well-represented on fall weekends.
Entering Week 1 there will be 17 former Broncos under contract with NFL clubs, with 12 on active 53-man rosters. All-Pro offensive tackle Ryan Clady (Denver Broncos) and standout cornerback Orlando Scandrick (Dallas Cowboys) will spend the season on injured reserve after suffering season-ending injuries during the offseason, rookie running back Jay Ajayi (Miami Dolphins) begins the campaign on the IR-designated to return list, meaning that he is ineligible to return to action until after Week 6, and quarterback Kellen Moore and fullback Blake Renaud open the year on the practice squads of the Dallas Cowboys and Minnesota Vikings, respectively.
Boise State's 12 players on 53-man rosters is second in the Mountain West only to Fresno State, which claims 14. Below is a list of the Broncos that are under contract as the 2015 NFL season gets underway:
Jay Ajayi, RB (Miami Dolphins)
Ajayi was bothered by a hamstring injury that forced him to miss Miami's first two preseason games, but bounced back to rush 16 times for 91 yards and catch four passes for 41 yards over the final two contests. He was enjoying a fine finale, rushing nine times for 66 yards and gaining 37 yards over a pair of receptions before exiting the game with a broken rib, due to which Miami placed him on the IR-designated to return list.
Richie Brockel, RB (Carolina Panthers)
After making a pair of solo tackles and assisting on two others in the preseason, Brockel and the Panthers travel to Jacksonville to take on the Jaguars Sunday at 11 a.m. MT.
Ryan Clady, OT (Denver Broncos)
Following the exhibition season, however, Clady returned to Boise to serve as the Broncos' honorary captain for last Friday's 16-13 win over Washington.
Tyrone Crawford, DE (Dallas Cowboys)
After missing the 2013 season due to injury, Crawford returned in 2014, recording 3.0 sacks and 25 solo tackles over 15 games as Dallas went 12-4 and reached the NFC Divisional round of the playoffs.
The Cowboys open the 2015 season Sunday night at 6:30 p.m. MT against the New York Giants.
George Iloka, S (Cincinnati Bengals)
Iloka enjoyed his best season as a pro in 2014, setting career highs with 50 solo tackles and three interceptions as the Bengals went 10-5-1 and earned a wild-card spot in the playoffs.
Iloka and the Bengals open the 2015 season on the road in The Black Hole Sunday, visiting the Oakland Raiders for Week 1's must-watch game at 2:25 p.m. MT.
Jeron Johnson, S (Washington)
Johnson, who missed Seattle's Super Bowl XLVIII victory due to injury, played in the Seahawks' 28-24 Super Bowl XLIX loss to New England, making a tackle in the contest. For the season, Johnson made 13 solo tackles over 15 games while making his first NFL start.
Johnson signed with Washington in March, and will make his regular-season debut with the club in Sunday's home opener at 11 a.m. MT against Miami.
DeMarcus Lawrence, DE (Dallas Cowboys)
Lawrence made nine solo tackles, forced a fumble and recovered a pair of fumbles over the final seven games of 2014, as the Cowboys went 6-1 down the stretch to finish 12-4 and make the playoffs.
One of four Bronco alumni on the Cowboy, Lawrence and Dallas open 2015 Sunday night against the New York Giants.
Charles Leno, Jr., OT (Chicago Bears)
Leno played six games, making one start, as a reserve lineman in his rookie season for the Bears in 2014, as Chicago went 5-11. This Sunday the Bears open the new campaign at home against the Green Bay Packers at 11 a.m. MT.
Doug Martin, RB (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
Martin bounced back with a strong 2015 preseason, rushing 20 times for 118 yards and a touchdown to solidify his spot as the Bucs' starter in the backfield.
Tampa Bay opens the 2015 season Sunday at home against Tennessee at 2:25 p.m. MT.
Shea McClellin, LB (Chicago Bears)
McClellin and the Bears host Green Bay Sunday at 11 a.m. MT.
Kellen Moore, QB (Dallas Cowboys)
Moore, however, was quickly picked up by Dallas, where he joins former Broncos Tyrone Crawford, DeMarcus Lawrence and Orlando Scandrick. Tuesday, the Cowboys announced that Moore would be beginning the season on the practice squad ahead of Sunday's opener against the New York Giants.
Matt Paradis, C (Denver Broncos)
Paradis and the Broncos open the season Sunday at home against the Baltimore Ravens at 2:25 p.m. MT.
Blake Renaud, FB (Minnesota Vikings)
Renaud saw action throughout the preseason, highlighted by a one-yard touchdown rush against Oakland on Aug. 21, but was one of the Vikings' final cuts before the 53-man deadline. However, the Vikings immediately signed Renaud to their practice squad.
Reports out of Minnesota this week, however, note that Viking fullback Zach Line has missed practice this week due to injury, leaving open the possibility of Renaud being signed off the practice squad for Monday night's opener at San Francisco.
Orlando Scandrick, CB (Dallas Cowboys)
However, the reliable cornerback will miss the 2015 campaign after suffering a torn ACL in practice during the preseason.
Jamar Taylor, S (Miami Dolphins)
This Sunday, Taylor and the Dolphins open the 2015 campaign at 11 a.m. MT at Washington.
Kyle Wilson, CB (New Orleans Saints)
Wilson played in all 16 regular-season games for the Jets in each of his five seasons in New York, making 24 solo tackles in each of the final two.
This Sunday, he'll make his Saints debut at Arizona at 2:05 p.m. MT.
Billy Winn, DT (Cleveland Browns)
Winn played in the Browns' preseason finale against Chicago, making a solo tackle and assisting on another.
This Sunday the Browns open the 2015 season at home against the New York Jets at 11 a.m. MT.
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