With such stellar names as Peyton Manning, Von Miller, Champ Bailey and Wes Welker to be found on the 2013 Denver Broncos‘ roster, it’s important to remember that numerous other cogs in the machine are at work.
Those bearing the names of Orlando Franklin, Mitch Unrein and Jacob Tamme are just as vital to the Broncos’ success, but will never get interviewed by the likes of Michele Tafoya or Lisa Salters during big games.
Nevertheless, without their contributions, the Broncos — AFC powerhouse that they are — would never be able to realize their full potential, which many of us hope ends in Manning and owner Pat Bowlen hoisting the Lombardi trophy next February.
Among these players is Danny Trevathan, a lightly regarded linebacker from the University of Kentucky — selected in Round 6 of the 2012 NFL draft — who has won the admiration of defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio and head coach John Fox, among others.
Because 2012 was not one of the brightest moments in the generally pallid career of former Bronco — and current Chicago Bears linebacker D.J. Williams – Trevathan was able to step in for Williams during his nine-game suspension.
When given the opportunity, Trevathan made big plays to the keen eye of the diligent film watcher, such as a sack at a key interval in a 31-23 win over the Cincinnati Bengals. While on special teams, he is diligent in his assignments and does whatever it takes to ensure the Broncos are on the winning path.
Trevathan always interacts with fans on Twitter, as well, and even follows some of us — I being among that fortuitous number — while all the while, he speaks of doing what is best for the franchise and wants to be a key contributor on a Super Bowl championship team.
While much of Trevathan’s potential has yet to be unsheathed, he is eerily similar to another former Kentucky Wildcat linebacker who has become a Bronco, Wesley Woodyard.
Woodyard, incidentally, went undrafted in 2008, but really proved to excel under Del Rio’s guidance. In 2012, Woodyard amassed 73 solo tackles, 5.5 sacks and 3 interceptions — including two that were highly pivotal in changing momentum in games against the Houston Texans and New Orleans Saints, respectively.
To me, Woodyard and Trevathan represent what the Broncos are all about, hard-working lunch pail types who do whatever is necessary (within the rules of course) to win.
For every Peyton Manning or Von Miller-type on the roster, there are four or five Woodyard and Trevathan types, which sets up the recipe for what could be an outstanding season at 5,280 feet.
The good news is that later this month, training camps will commence all over the NFL and even more storylines, many of which, I trust, will involve Woodyard and Trevathan contributing more fully at Broncos headquarters.