The Denver Post - - SPORTS - — Nicki Jhab­vala, The Den­ver Post

Bron­cos coach Vance Joseph has a clear plan in place for how he in­tends to use his quar­ter­backs and starters in Thurs­day night’s pre­sea­son opener at Chicago.

The start­ing de­fense, in­clud­ing pass rusher Von Miller, will play a max­i­mum of three se­ries to be­gin the game.

“It de­pends on how it goes,” Joseph said. “If they go out there and play a dom­i­nant se­ries, they may play one. If they have a so-so se­ries in the first and a bet­ter se­ries in the sec­ond se­ries, they’ll only play two. But three max.”

On of­fense, Trevor Siemian was named the start­ing quar­ter­back against the Bears, and Pax­ton Lynch was named the starter for the sec­ond pre­sea­son game against San Fran­cisco. Each quar­ter­back, Joseph said, will play about a quar­ter and a half.

Start­ing run­ning back C.J. An­der­son will fol­low the script of the de­fense and play a max­i­mum of three se­ries. Vet­eran Ste­van Ri­d­ley, rookie De’An­gelo Hen­der­son and Juwan Thomp­son will finish out the game. Vet­eran Ja­maal Charles, who took more reps in prac­tice Tues­day as the team moved back out­side, will not play at Chicago.

“We want to stay with the plan for Ja­maal and just give him more and more reps as we go along,” Joseph said. “Be­ing in­side (Mon­day), we didn’t want him on the turf that much with his his­tory. Back on the grass, we gave him more reps.”

The start­ing of­fen­sive line Thurs­day will con­sist of Garett Bolles at left tackle, Max Garcia at left guard, Con­nor McGovern at cen­ter, Ron Leary at right guard and Mene­lik Wat­son at right tackle. Matt Paradis, still eas­ing his way back from two hip surg­eries this year, will not play.

In­jury up­dates.

Joseph said in­side line­backer Todd Davis will not play at Chicago be­cause of the sprained shoul­der that has kept him out of prac­tices. Davis did not work out with the team Tues­day morn­ing, and Joseph said his avail­abil­ity in pre­sea­son could be lim­ited be­cause of the in­jury.

“His time­line, it’s day to day,” Joseph said. “It’s more pre­cau­tion­ary for Todd than a con­cern.”

Corey Nelson will start with Davis side­lined.

“Corey is on the lines of (cor­ner­back Bradley) Roby,” Joseph said. “He’s our third in­side line­backer, our start­ing dime player. So, in my opin­ion, Corey is a starter. On most teams, Corey would be a starter. If he had to play for us, I would have no prob­lem with Corey be­ing the (reg­u­lar-sea­son) starter for us.”

As for other in­jured or re­cov­er­ing play­ers, run­ning back Bernard Pierce (ham­string) did not prac­tice Tues­day and safety T.J. Ward (ham­string) ob­served from the side­line. Joseph said Mon­day that Ward will not play Thurs­day.

Emer­gency plan.

The Bron­cos opened Tues­day’s prac­tice by work­ing on their con­tin­gency plans on spe­cial teams.

De­fen­sive end Billy Winn stepped in as the emer­gency long snap­per, Siemian took over for Ri­ley Dixon as the emer­gency holder, and then Dixon dropped back as kicker. On punts, kicker Bran­don McManus filled the emer­gency slot. McManus served as place­kicker and punter and han­dled kick­offs while in col­lege at Tem­ple.


Ac­cord­ing to ESPN, Bears quar­ter­back Mike Glen­non is ex­pected to start Thurs­day’s game against the Bron­cos and will prob­a­bly play a se­ries or two. Mark Sanchez, a fa­mil­iar face in Den­ver af­ter last year’s quar­ter­back com­pe­ti­tion, and rookie Mitchell Tru­bisky will play the rest of the game. … Spe­cial-teams co­or­di­na­tor Brock Olivo was asked if Miller could se­ri­ously re­turn punts. “We could prob­a­bly put Von back there alone,” Olivo said jok­ingly. “I don’t think there’s anything Von Miller can’t do. He’s a great dancer, too.” … Joseph said of­fen­sive co­or­di­na­tor Mike McCoy and de­fen­sive co­or­di­na­tor Joe Woods will wear head­sets on the side­line.

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