Broncos Sign Jacob Hester to Bolster Backfield and Other AFC West News

Christopher HansenNFL AnalystNovember 26, 2012

DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 09:  Running back Jacob Hester #22 of the San Diego Chargers picks up yardage as he is tackled by Quinton Carter #28 of the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on October 9, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. The Chargers defeated the Broncos 29-24.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

The Denver Broncos lost their No. 1 running back to injury for the season and for whatever reason prefer to keep five backs on the roster. Knowshon Moreno started in place of Willis McGahee on Sunday and performed well, but the Broncos wanted another backup. The Broncos also have rookie Ronnie Hillman, special teams ace Lance Ball and fullback Chris Gronkowski on the roster.

The Broncos seem to be overly concerned with pass protection, even though McGahee was only asked to pass block a handful of times per game. To solve the issue of pass protection, the Broncos announced the addition of fullback Jacob Hester who spent the last four years with the San Diego Chargers.

Hester hasn’t been relied upon heavily to pass block over the past few seasons and was primary used as a run-blocker in San Diego. The Broncos only use a lead blocking fullback a handful of times per game, but it could be the Broncos are planning more two-back sets going forward without McGahee in the backfield.

Hester is a much more capable and polished receiver than Gronkowski, and he’s a big back that is capable of handling short-yardage situations that the smaller backs like Moreno, Hillman and Ball wouldn’t be able to execute. Hester can also useful on special teams which makes him easier to activate on game days.

This is an underrated in-season signing that could really help the Broncos maintain the production of the running game without McGahee.


More AFC West News…



Jeff Legwold of the Denver Post says the Broncos will certainly take an ugly win over a pretty loss.

Mike Klis of the Denver Post says Demaryius Thomas is turning out to be good addition to the Broncos after injuries plagued the first two years of his career.



Monte Poole of the Contra Costa Times says it’s hard to blame the Raiders for brawling after a terrible blown call.

Cincinnati showed Carson Palmer no love on the football field or in the stands according to Vic Tafur of the San Francisco Chronicle.


Kansas City

Romeo Crennel is out of answers for the hopeless Chiefs according to Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star.

Randy Covitz of the Kansas City Star says the Chiefs defensive effort crumbled when they needed it the most.

Jamaal Charles had 107 yards rushing, but his effort went to waste against the Broncos according to Adam Teicher of the Kansas City Star.


San Diego

The Chargers biggest free-agent acquisition—Robert Meachem—played just two snaps and have zero passes thrown his way according to Michael Gehlken of U-T San Diego.

Kevin Acee of U-T San Diego says the Chargers are the opposite of winners.

That’s just the Chargers were just being the Chargers according to Nick Canepa of U-T San Diego.