Denver Broncos cornerback Omar Bolden at rookie mini-camp. (Andrew Mason/MaxDenver.com)
The biggest development to come out of Denver Broncos rookie mini-camp was simply the fact that fourth round pick CB Omar Bolden made it through it, without a knee brace and without incident.
It was the first series of real, team football practices Bolden has completed since 2010.
“I got hurt in the spring of 2011,” Bolden reminded reporters, “so this is all exciting for me. I really love this game. Just to have the opportunity to be out here and play in the NFL and for the Broncos, it’s an amazing opportunity.”
The Broncos and Bolden have the luxury of taking it easy — they added veteran starting cornerbacks Tracy Porter and Drayton Florence through free agency — but that doesn’t mean that’s what Bolden will do. A team captain who went to every ASU practice and every team meeting while injured in 2011, it’s not in Bolden’s nature to sit still. He ran a 4.51 40-time at his pro day less than a month after declaring his knee 100% healthy. He completed an impressive 24 reps of the 225-lbs. bench press at the combine — tops at his position.
This rookie will work his tail off.
“He definitely looked like a first-round type of talent in our mini-camp,” head coach John Fox told 850 KOA AM radio Monday.
Bolden didn’t talk about pushing those potential starters though; he says he is just eager to learn.
“There’s no better situation to come in than to be in my shoes—to learn from [CBs] Champ Bailey, Tracy Porter and [Drayton] Florence,” Bolden said. “These are guys, they’ve been around for a long time. There’s a reason why they’re still here. Seven-to-10 years later, I want to be one of those guys that’s still around. I’m just going to do my best to stick in their pocket, stick in their ear and learn as best as I can.”
“I think (Bolden) had a good camp. I thought he played well and he reacted to our install very well,” Fox said Saturday. “He has good football awareness and football intelligence.”
Bolden isn’t the only promising young prospect at cornerback for the Broncos behind their three veterans. There’s Chris Harris, who is coming off an excellent rookie campaign of his own in 2011, and Coryell Judie, an impressive-looking undrafted rookie who at least one NFL scout called the best UDFA in the AFC West. Add in Syd’Quan Thompson and Cassius Vaughn, and the battle of cornerback depth behind Champ Bailey promises to be the most exciting of training camp.
Photo credit: MaxDenver.com