Lindsay willing to play any role to latch on with Broncos
ENGLEWOOD — The fieriness of undrafted rookie running back Phillip Lindsay will be put on the backburner.
Not for long, just for now.
The former Colorado standout known as the “Tasmanian Devil “ for his relentless motor is all ears these days in the Denver Broncos’ meeting room.
“I have to get in where I fit in. Right now, that’s learning and listening and being quiet,” Lindsay said on the first day of rookie orientation Friday. “My place is to listen to the veterans and coaches and take what they want and establish it on the football field.”
That also means lining up wherever the Broncos want him to line up. He’s willing to return kickoffs and punts, play special teams, become a situational running back, even line up as a slot receiver.
Anything to make this roster. He’s got a solid chance especially given this: At least one rookie college free agent has made the Broncos’ active roster out of training camp in 13 of the last 14 years, including Pro Bowl cornerback Chris Harris in 2011.
“I’m just going to showcase everything,” Lindsay said.
Being from Denver, Lindsay gets asked all the time by his fellow rookies about his city. He’s sort of Denver’s first ambassador, along with rookie offensive lineman Sam Jones, who’s a sixth-round pick out of Arizona State and also hails from the Mile High City.
“A lot of times they think [Denver] is just cold,” Lindsay said. “Now, they get to see it’s dry, it’s hot. It’s beautiful.”
It didn’t take long for Lindsay to have his first welcome-to-pro-football moment by simply walking into the locker room.
“It’s like, ‘Dang, it’s really here,’ ” Lindsay said. “Now it’s time for me to go and seize the moment.”
While with the Buffaloes, Lindsay was an integral piece of the offense as he recorded back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons. The 5-foot-8, 190-pound running back brought an edge and intensity to the backfield but didn’t get selected in the recent draft.
Still, he feels like he landed in a good situation with his hometown team. Lindsay joins a backfield that counts Devontae Booker as its veteran after severing ties with C.J. Anderson. Royce Freeman was drafted in the third round out of Oregon to play a big role, as well.
Lindsay and Freeman — two Pac-12 tailbacks Jones saw plenty of while at Arizona State.
“I’m excited to wear the same jersey as him and Phil now, instead of having them run all over our defense,” Jones said. “We can run all over somebody else.”
Lindsay impressed the Broncos brass and coaching staff at his pro day by turning in a time of 4.39 seconds in his 40-yard dash. He also shined at the Shrine Game, where he drew some comparisons to New England running back James White.
“But I don’t want to be like anybody else,” Lindsay said. “I want to be like Phillip Lindsay, establishing myself with special teams and getting into the playbook as a running back. … I’m happy to be a part of the team and I’m ready to get things going.”
NOTES: Jones said he’s been learning the playbook under the tutelage of Broncos OL Connor McGovern. “Definitely a leg up going into camp,” Jones said. … WR DaeSean Hamilton of Penn State was wearing big glasses that would’ve made LB Von Miller proud. “I took notices of the type of glasses that he wears,” said Hamilton, a fourth-round selection. “I like really fancy glasses, big glasses.” … David Williams, a seventh-round pick out of Arkansas, said of the wide-open running back competition: “It’s actually a great situation. If it was me in college, I’d go to this school — if it was a school — because the situation is so good.” … LB Keishawn Bierria, a sixth-round pick from Washington, on learning the playbook: “It’s a lot. But that’s why we have the vets. We have the vets to lean on. They’ll also serve as teachers for us, too. The more time we spend with them and get knowledge from them, it will be a lot easier.” … ILB Josey Jewell, a fourth-round pick out of Iowa, is fond of his nickname The Outlaw. “It happened in college and hopefully it keeps going,” Jewell said.
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