Inside the Denver Broncos’ Roster: The Specialists


Published: July 20, 2009

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... of any and every NFL team:  the special teams unit.

In 2008, Denver Broncos fans looked at this area of the team with an eye of uncertainty. Not only were the Broncos going to feature a brand new punter, but longtime kicker and future Ring of Famer Jason Elam bolted town for the Atlanta Falcons.

Since the rest of Denver's 2008 squad had the youth theme in common, Mike Shanahan must have seen fit to hire two very youthful replacements at the kicker and punter positions, so he did.

Late in the 2007 season, the Broncos brought in rookie Matt Prater to be their kickoff specialist since clearly Jason Elam's leg had lost some power. 

The rookie out of Central Florida had spent time with the Falcons and Dolphins, and while he was a fairly quiet acquisition late in 2007, he was expected to resume kickoff duties with the Broncos for a while.

After the departure of Elam, the Broncos felt as though they had a nice prospect in the second year kicker...

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