Is the Denver Broncos Secondary Really Getting Too Old?

Benjamin RichardsonContributor IJuly 3, 2010

KANSAS CITY, MO - DECEMBER 6:  Champ Bailey #24 of the Denver Broncos looks on during warm-up prior to their NFL game against the Kansas City Chiefs on December 6, 2009 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. The Broncos defeated the Chiefs 44-13. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Let's put it straight out there: a lot of fans of other teams seem to think the third-best secondary last year, with two Pro Bowl players both in their 30s, seems to be a little old.

Is it true? That this badass secondary from just one year ago has already been forgotten?

Let's start with Champ Bailey. The man is simply amazing. He is also the greatest defensive player on the Broncos team. No. 24 had 74 tackles, 3 interceptions, and 15 passes deflected. Did I mention they don't throw at this guy very often?

Denver and Bailey have to agree to terms on a new deal, but coach McDaniels already has stated publicly before as long as he is a coach he would love to have Bailey on the team. Too old? I think not.

Next up is Brian Dawkins. No. 20 had 116 tackles, 2 interceptions, 11 passes deflected, and 2 fumble recoveries.

The man from Jacksonville is a living Wolverine. He runs up and jumps in the air like a super hero and tackles foes in a single bounce. It sounds like I'm writing a comic book here, but I'm really not.

Brian Dawkins, at the age of 36, is still putting a hurt of offensive opponents and being the great leader he has always been known for.

He came from Philly last year feeling like Denver just wanted him to be here. We do, Mr. Dawkins. This guy is a machine.

He is not only humble in his faith, but dedicated on the field. He has managed to show the true leadership the Denver defense was missing since Al Wilson.

Too old, they say of this soldier of the orange and blue. I say not, my friends. Let's move on.

The next pair were both Dolphins and came over to Denver last year after helping the Dolphins improve.

I remember sitting at the scrimmage last year at Invesco Field and seeing Andre Goodman intercept Kyle Orton and take it to the house. He made several great plays that day and I knew this guy could play.

Let's all be honest. I was just telling some fellow members of Bleacher Report in Detroit that Dre Bly probably ended Mike Shanahan's career as a head coach of the Denver Broncos.

Teams used that guy every game down the side deep. He would commit pass interference practically every time because he got burned and teams would use the same gameplan Sunday after Sunday.

Down the side on Bly. It became almost unbearable to watch.

With 44 tackles, 5 interceptions, and 17 passes deflected, Andre Goodman made plays when it mattered for Denver last year. The offense was stale at times to the point of non-existence, and teams did not target Bailey much, so this guy had to hustle it.

Boy, did he get it done.

Sometimes they got him. But man, what a difference from the nightmare of seeing every QB we play just hit Bly down the side.

Goodman can hold his own and it contributed to that third-ranked passing defense from last year. Old is a word, my friend. Apparently 31 is not old.

Reinaldo Hill had solid production for Denver last year. He made some pretty good plays  and filled holes well with 59 tackles, 2 interceptions, 6 passes deflected, and 2 sacks.

Hill consistently can be seen in on tackles. He supports really well and can find the ball carrier well.

There was some times he may have been out of place in the play but it was not often, and overall he made great decisions.

At 31 years old, he is just barely getting to mid-mileage. He got some miles to go. Not too old at all.

With our LB corps also having two more 30-year-old players, it's easy to see why people can get the impression Denver is getting Social Security for its defensive backfield.

However, with age comes something you can't gain as a young gun: wisdom. The knowledge to play the game. There is not a problem with the Denver Broncos secondary.

In fact, this year they are going to kick some butt. The type when you put foot to crack.

Not because I say so, but because with the addition of the D-line upgrade, the Broncos may be able to actually improve upon their third spot ranking, with the stronger rush possibilities.

So maybe seasoning can be good, whether in a salad or on a football field. Wisdom and experience are valuable things and them young guns who fly now will some day be like Denver is now...with a seasoned secondary.

Too old? the answer is NO, my good sir.


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