As teams deal with inaccurate and injured kickers around the NFL, the Broncos’ Brandon McManus is off to one of the best starts of his career.
McManus has no missed field goal or extra-point attempts through five games for the third time in his career (2015 and ’18). He is 11 of 11 on field goals and 9 of 9 on extra points.
“Obviously, it’s always good to start the year well (when) the weather is pretty favorable throughout the country,” he said before practice Thursday. “Just (trying) to get into a good grove and be consistent.”
McManus’ field goals have been from 23, 36, 32, 46, 40, 45, 47, 21, 36, 39 and 29 yards. Even with two home games at altitude, he hasn’t attempted a kick of at least 50 yards.
“We passed up on a couple to go for it on fourth down,” he said. “I think last year was a little bit of an anomaly with (16) attempts (of at least 50 yards), but I’m excited to get out there and make a couple this week or in future weeks.”
New play-caller. Greg Olson takes over as Las Vegas’ play-caller following coach Jon Gruden’s resignation on Monday night.
“Their offense, I’m sure, won’t change as far as schematically what they’re doing,” Broncos Vic Fangio said. “Obviously, the new play caller will maybe zero in on some other stuff that maybe they haven’t used as much or majored in. … It’ll be the same offense, but how it’s called and how it’s utilized will be different.”
Injury report. Running back Melvin Gordon (lower leg) and safety Kareem Jackson (back) returned to practice Thursday in a limited capacity.
Cornerback Mike Ford (knee) was the only Broncos player to not practice.
Outside linebacker Aaron Patrick (ankle) was added to the injury report and was limited.
Emphasizing better starts. Fangio said starting games faster is a mindset rather than something that can simulated in practice.
“Sometimes what looks to be a slow start is sometimes somebody getting beat deep, somebody missing a block, somebody dropping a pass or maybe a poor throw,” he said. “All of a sudden, it’s a slow start and everybody thinks it’s a slow start because you’re not ready, you’re not into the game, your mind’s not right. Sometimes, it’s that. Sometimes, your mind isn’t right. … There are all kinds of things that go into that and hopefully we can get that rectified.”
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