Wide receiver hopefuls look to catch a break


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Jan 22, 2006
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Wide receiver hopefuls look to catch a break
By Bill Williamson
Denver Post Staff Writer

While Javon Walker's health and Ashley Lelie's potential holdout have dominated the talk surrounding the Broncos' wide receivers, other players are taking advantage of the extra repetitions during the team's passing camp.

Veteran David Kircus has impressed the coaching staff since signing in January, and rookie Brandon Marshall, a fourth- round pick from Central Florida, has opened the eyes of a high-profile teammate during the past week. Kircus and Marshall are expected to make strong pushes for reserve spots during training camp, which begins in late July.

"I want to know what other teams were thinking passing up on him," Denver Pro Bowl cornerback Champ Bailey said of Marshall. "Guy's an incredible talent, obviously. You can prove yourself only so much in practice, but he's doing well enough to catch everybody's eye. I want to see how that translates to Sunday."

Kircus is trying to catch on in Denver after playing 12 games with the Detroit Lions in 2003-04. He was out of football last season after being cut by the Lions in September. The Broncos have been impressed by his athleticism and work ethic.

"It's already training camp for me," Kircus said. "I know I can play in this league, and I will to spend every practice like a game, trying to prove I belong."

Walker, acquired last month from Green Bay, continued to make progress Monday, Denver coach Mike Shanahan said. Walker, coming off a torn anterior cruciate ligament, is expected to be at full speed at camp. Lelie is skipping the passing camp and wants to be traded.

Ready to go

Linebacker Nate Webster said Monday his delay in signing with Denver was because of a family matter. Webster agreed to terms with Denver in March but didn't sign until this month. Webster said talks resumed during the draft.

"I got everything taken care of and everything is good," said Webster, who likely will be a backup at all three linebacker positions. "This is a great organization to be with."

Smith update

The Houston Texans are expected to interview Green Bay executive Reggie McKenzie this week for their general manager position.

Denver assistant general manager Rick Smith interviewed for the post Friday.

Houston owner Bob McNair - who could meet with Smith again this week while in Denver for the NFL owners meetings - may interview up to four candidates for the job and may have a second round of interviews next week.

Prime targets

The six undrafted free agents Denver signed after the draft received $20,000 signing bonuses. No undrafted free agents around the NFL received more. Late seventh-round picks receive about $25,000 in signing bonuses while most undrafted players receive about $10,000 in bonus money.

Unlike most teams, Denver's philosophy toward college free agents has been to designate a short list of priority players instead of concentrating on a large undrafted class.

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