Well, you know your team didn't cut any recognizable names when the main headline of every news story relating to the Broncos' roster cutdown on Monday starts off with "Long snapper Lonie Paxton released by the Broncos in roster trim."
The Broncos cut 12 players, including placing starting LDE Jason Hunter on injured reserve. The players that the Broncos released are as follows: LS Lonie Paxton, LB Elliot Coffey, WR Mark Dell, WR Cameron Kenney, TE Anthony Miller, DE Cyril Obiozor, RB Xavier Omon, S Anthony Perkins, T Mike Remmers, CB Ramzee Robinson, FB Austin Sylvester and G Austin Wuebbels.
Of these players that were cut, there are only three names that really pop out to me – those being Paxton, Omon and Obiozor.
Paxton has been in the NFL since 2000, had been the long snapper for New England's three Super Bowl-winning teams, and had been with the Broncos since 2009 when he signed with Denver as a free agent. The Broncos signed college free agent Aaron Brewer during the offseason, and it appears that he will handle long-snapping duties. Paxton hadn't slowed down, but Brewer proved to be more than capable of handling long-snapping duties during training camp and the preseason. It came down to a monetary issue, where Paxton had two years left on his contract, where he was owed $1.7 million. If Brewer sticks on the roster the entire season, he is owed just $390,000.
RB Omon was a favorite of the Denver fan base. He led the team in rushing in the Broncos' first preseason game vs. Chicago, but in a crowded backfield with the likes of Willis McGahee, Ronnie Hillman, Lance Ball, Knowshon Moreno and Jeremiah Johnson, there appeared to be no room for Omon.
Obiozor had a strong training camp, and was competing for playing time at defensive end, but even in the aftermath of Jason Hunter's injury, it appears Jeremy Beal will now back up Derek Wolfe at LDE, not Obiozor.
In other news, Jason Hunter was placed on injured reserve. This was expected, as the earliest Hunter could have returned was in December.
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