With the departure of Knowshon Moreno, the Denver Broncos have decided to hand the reigns over to second-year running back Montee Ball as the team looks to create a balanced attack on offense for the 2014 NFL season. There is a question on who will back up Ball if he ends up injured. C.J. Anderson is currently the backup with some questions on who is behind him. One player looking to make the roster and make an impact in the run game is an undrafted free agent.
Brennan Clay did not hear his name called in this year’s draft, but the Broncos decided to sign him in order to create some competition in training camp this summer. The running back out of of Oklahoma has impressed so far in OTAs and minicamp, and he goes into camp in July with a legitimate shot at making the roster.
During his time with the Sooners, Clay saw time not only as a running back but also as a wide receiver and a kickoff returner. This could help the Broncos as far as his abilities as a utility player. He also has the clutch gene as he was responsible for scoring the game-winning touchdown in overtime when the Sooners beat the Oklahoma State Cowboys back in 2012. His biggest game came against the Kansas State Wildcats last year, as he rushed for 200 yards and two touchdowns.
Clay can bring a lot for the Broncos as far as strengths. His ability to catch out of the backfield is a real benefit. This was a skill that Moreno had for the Broncos, which came in handy for Peyton Manning if the wideouts were covered. Clay is also very dependable as a player and a hard worker. He is also patient when it comes to finding a hole and running through it for more yards. His toughness and durability can turn him into a bruiser for the Broncos.
He does have his share of weaknesses as well; he is not quite as built as the other running backs and his speed is average at best. He was never really given a chance to be a feature back, so there are questions as to if he could hold up for a team in the league. These are weaknesses that could hopefully be worked on with time.
With as impressive as Clay has been in training camp, I can see him making the roster as one of the backups at best. His ability to catch the ball out of the backfield cannot be denied as the Broncos are going to need a running back that can do that. With his hard working mentality, there is no doubt that he can do great things in the league as he looks to begin his career in the pros.