ENGLEWOOD — The Denver Broncos (1-3) host the Arizona Cardinals (1-2) in their preseason finale Thursday night at Broncos Stadium at Mile High.
With the regular season less than two weeks to go, roster spots are still up for grabs as the front office narrows down the team to 53 players.
“I think there’s still a good bit, myself, definitely in the double digits for sure,” head coach Vic Fangio said.
With the starters watching this one from the sidelines, players will battle for openings on the defensive line, wide receiver, tight end and quarterback.
While the starting role for the game is up in the air, quarterbacks Kevin Hogan and Brett Rypien will both see extended playing time. The duo will look to fill the spot behind Joe Flacco while rookie Drew Lock recovers from a right thumb injury suffered against the Rams.
“I haven’t decided yet," Fangio said. "With a short week we haven’t had that meeting yet, but they’re both going to play.”
Both quarterbacks have seen time during the first four preseason games and will try and keep the Broncos brass from looking elsewhere for help at the position.
“Football is football," Hogan said. "You can only do too much, You hurt yourself when you go out and try to do too much. Just got to go run the plays that are called and go through my reads and hit the first guy that's open. I can't worry about doing anything more.”
"I think at the end of the day, you have to control what you can control and that’s just coming out here and having a good day today," Rypien said. It does you no good to worry about what’s going to happen on Thursday, what’s going to happen on Friday because it’s all out of your control.”
Earlier this week, the team released veterans Dekoda Watson (OLB), Steve Kerr (DL) and Nick Williams (WR). It's the start of a difficult process for Denver but the hope is several players that have impressed in the preseason will find their way onto the practice squad.
"First off, if there’s a player here that we want on our practice squad and he can go to another team’s practice squad, he should stay here," Fangio said. "Why go somewhere new and have to learn a whole new system? Anybody that we ask to keep on the practice squad here they’ve built some equity with us, so why go somewhere and start with ground zero. It hasn’t happened very often where the home team has lost out in practice squad."
Kickoff between the Broncos and Cardinals is set for 7:05 p.m.
Full Broncos regular season schedule
|9/15/19||Chicago Bears @ Denver Broncos||Broncos Stadium at Mile High||2:25 p.m. MT|
|9/22/19||Denver Broncos @ Green Bay Packers||Lambeau Field||11 a.m. MT|
|9/29/19||Jacksonville Jaguars @ Denver Broncos||Broncos Stadium at Mile High||2:25 p.m. MT|
|10/6/19||Denver Broncos @ Los Angeles Chargers||Rokit Field at Dignity Health Sports Park||2:05 p.m. MT|
|10/13/19||Tennessee Titans @ Denver Broncos||Broncos Stadium at Mile High||2:25 p.m. MT|
|10/17/19 (Thursday)||Kansas City Chiefs @ Denver Broncos||Broncos Stadium at Mile High||6:20 p.m. MT|
|10/27/19||Denver Broncos @ Indianapolis Colts||Lucas Oil Stadium||2:25 p.m. MT|
|11/3/19||Cleveland Browns @ Denver Broncos||Broncos Stadium at Mile High||2:25 p.m. MT|
|11/17/19||Denver Broncos @ Minnesota Vikings||U.S. Bank Stadium||11 a.m. MT|
|11/24/19||Denver Broncos @ Buffalo Bills||New Era Field||11 a.m. MT|
|12/1/19||Los Angeles Chargers @ Denver Broncos||Broncos Stadium at Mile High||2:25 p.m. MT|
|12/8/19||Denver Broncos @ Houston Texans||NRG Stadium||11 a.m. MT|
|12/15/19||Denver Broncos @ Kansas City Chiefs||Arrowhead Stadium||11 a.m. MT|
|TBD||Detroit Lions @ Denver Broncos||Broncos Stadium at Mile High||TBD|
|12/29/19||Oakland Raiders @ Denver Broncos||Broncos Stadium at Mile High||2:25 p.m. MT|