Another week of pre-season is in the books, and I have to say, this has been the most exciting pre-season I’ve seen probably ever. We have so much young talent and so many storylines it’s just fun to watch how they turn out. There are some who say that pre-season is meaningless and should be reduced. I strongly disagree, but I’ll save that story for a rainy day.
I started writing this series to expose the talent of next-generation players that stood out during the week but might not get much playing time during the regular season. Last week we talked about Baker Mayfield. Not exactly the great unknown. This week I wanted to go a little deeper. I was torn between three very different candidates, but in the end, the homer in me won out.
I said that I wanted to go deeper and it doesn’t get any deeper than an undersized, undrafted free agent trying to earn a spot at a position that’s already half full. I don’t live in Colorado, so I didn’t know or think much of Colorado native Phillip Lindsay when the Denver Broncos signed the former CU buff until someone told me to check him out. In my defense, not many people would see an undrafted 5′ 8” 190 lbs back and think he’s a beast, but this is why we watch film.
It didn’t take long for me to see why so many people were raving about him. He’s just one of those guys that play with a genuine love for the game. He plays with a fire in him and makes sure you know he’s on the field every snap he plays.
Lindsay had a good game in the preseason opener, but he really turned some heads last week against the Bears in week 2. Lindsay’s best asset is his versatility, and it showed up in spades in this game. He played just about every position he could and played it well.
Lindsay is really making his bones on special teams. As a return man, he showed great vision and patience like any good running back should. The guy has great instincts for setting up his blocks and attacking the right late at the right time. He has the speed to break off significant returns every time he touches the ball and isn’t afraid of going through traffic like most players his size.
Don’t think he’s limited to just returning kicks either. He showed off his speed and tackling ability as a gunner bringing down Cre’Von LeBlanc with a picture perfect tackle early in the fourth quarter.
On offense, Lindsay had a great game too. He ran like he didn’t know how small he is. Taking runs up the gut like Derek Henry. He is scary to watch because you know that sooner or later someone will light him up. Those hits came and went against the Bears, and Lindsay just kept on ticking. He won’t survive too many of those hits over time but it’s good to see he’s not made of glass.
I’ll end the lovefest there. Phillip Lindsay has earned a roster spot in my opinion. He’s too versatile not to have a job in this league but can he do what he’s been doing against starters? Who knows. Even if he does his size and durability and strength will always be a concern. He can be lethal as a receiver out of the backfield or in the slot, and he’s even looked serviceable as a blocker for a guy his size but would you trust him with a Khalil Mack gunning for your QB1? Only time will tell.
His playing time in tonight’s game will tell us more about what Denver thinks ok him, but I think he deserves the chance to show what he can do. If not for the Broncos then for another team.