Originally written on 60 Max Power O  |  Last updated 7/28/12

The Denver Broncos held their first training camp practice of the Peyton Manning era on Thursday morning and it didn't go without massive fanfare. The Broncos drew 4,372 fans, setting a record for the Broncos' Dove Valley location. The previous record set was on August 1st, 2010 when 3,103 fans came to see Tim Tebow in his rookie season.

There were other tidbits of note outside of 'Manning-mania'. Here are a few notes from Thursday's practice.

  • With DT Justin Bannan sitting out due to a calf injury, Mitch Unrein took first team snaps on defense with Ty Warren. Unrein was an undrafted free agent who was a part of the Broncos' defensive line rotation in 2011. Unrein also moved ahead of previous No. 1 on depth chart, Sealver Siliga.
  • With a six-game suspension to begin the season, D.J. Williams will not be with the Broncos' No. 1 defense during training camp. Wesley Woodyard will receive the first crack to take over Williams' spot at weakside linebacker. Nate Irving and rookie Danny Trevathan will also receive opportunities to win the spot. It is the first time since Williams was drafted in 2004 that D.J. will not be a part of the first team defense.
  • Safeties Mike Adams and Rahim Moore were on the first team defense. Quinton Carter was with No. 2.
  • Caleb Hanie is No. 2 on depth chart, Adam Weber back to No. 3, and Brock Osweiler at No. 4. Whoever loses the battle between Hanie and Weber for the backup spot behind Manning will likely be cut. If Weber loses battle, it's possible he gets re-signed to the practice squad.
  • RG Chris Kuper is dealing with an ankle/fibula injury. Kuper was at practice yesterday, but backup Manny Ramirez was on first team drills.
  • Lance Ball was behind Willis McGahee in team drills. Ball played as the No. 2 running back. Knowshon Moreno was at practice, but did not participate in team drills as he was wearing a knee brace. Mario Fanin, who is competing for a roster spot, got some reps with the No. 2 offense.

The defensive tackle positions are up for grabs. It could go any way between Justin Bannan, Mitch Unrein, Ty Warren, Sealver Siliga, Derek Wolfe and Kevin Vickerson. Entering training camp, Siliga and Warren were listed as the No. 1 defensive tackles on the depth chart. Apparently now, Unrein and Warren are No. 1.

The D.J. Williams tidbit isn't a shock. Williams will be out for nearly the first half of the season, and guys that need the reps who will take over Williams' spot for the time being and possibly in the future need these reps. Woodyard was excellent in his playing time in 2011, as he ranked in the top 10 in total tackles during the first half of the season. If Woodyard wins this battle for Williams' weakside linebacker position, and plays as well as he did in 2011, it wouldn't shock me to see the Broncos rid themselves of Williams following 2012.

Adams will likely start for the Broncos in 2012. Moore and Carter will be competing with one another to start alongside Adams.

The quarterback battle for No. 2 seems to fluctuate. In mini-camp, Weber had the inside track. With the start of training camp, it appears Hanie has the inside track. The one positive to this situation would be if Hanie outperforms Weber, as previously mentioned, the Broncos could always keep Weber around on the practice squad for another season.

Kuper is injured. Ramirez is a versatile lineman who can play numerous positions, but as of right now, he's nothing more than a backup. Kuper is not in danger of losing his starting spot.

The No. 2 position at running back is up for grabs. Ronnie Hillman just signed his rookie contract a mere two days ago. By the end of training camp and the preseason, we should have a better idea of who the true backup will be.

Some early notes on Friday afternoon's practice:

  • Practice was due to begin at 2:20. Peyton Manning was the first Bronco to arrive, at 2:05.
  • After about 10 minutes, there was a lightning delay. Broncos resumed practice shortly after.
  • Due to weather issues, Broncos were forced to move training camp into indoor facility. Practice is now closed off for the public to view.

Here are a few pictures from today's training camp.

Be sure to check out other great articles at Sports Media 101.

Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

WATCH: Lloyd McClendon has all-time meltdown

Drew Bledsoe defends Tom Brady over Deflategate

Did Heat offer Dwyane Wade less than $10 million per season?

David Ortiz brushes aside talk of being 'washed up'

USA Women’s World Cup roster verdict: No excuse not to win


UCF had no idea UConn was creating a rivalry trophy

Cam Newton signs five-year, $103M extension with Panthers

Devils introduce new head coach John Hynes

Report: Heat could make a run at Kevin Durant

Goodell denies request to recuse himself from Brady appeal

Dan Marino: Brady one of best QBs ever despite Deflategate

WATCH: Joey Gallo homers in first career game

Former Mississippi State cheerleader suing ESPN after hit by golf cart

Jackson says Bills plan to give McCoy 300-plus carries

McCoy not happy Perryman played dodgeball while injured

College football playoff schedule for 2015: New Year's Eve?

How the Chicago Blackhawks are thriving in salary cap era

Report: Klay Thompson cleared for Game 1 of NBA Finals

Pettine views latest Manziel incident as a ‘non-story’

Nationals need Taylor to produce in Werth’s absence

UAB football's return great, but bad publicity will last forever

What Adrian Peterson's return means for the Vikings

2015 Stanley Cup Final preview: Blackhawks vs. Lightning

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

USA Women’s World Cup: No excuse not to win

Projecting rosters for the 2015 MLB All-Star Game

What Peterson's return means

The Bulls and the culture of fitting in

X-factors for Cavs and Warriors

Pujols: Angels not 'Mike Trout show'

Adrian Peterson returns to Vikings

Chicago Bulls agree to deal with Fred Hoiberg

NBA should have 'legacy contracts' for long-time players

Atlanta Hawks unveil new logo

UAB fans celebrate football reinstatement

Sanchez backs off dismissal of Tebow

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.