Denver Broncos cornerback Bradley Roby will be a true starter on Sunday, when the Broncos take on the Miami Dolphins. Aqib Talib is suspended for his fight with Oakland Raiders wide receiver Michael Crabtree, meaning Roby starts opposite Chris Harris.
Broncos coach Vance Joseph, though likely knowing it’s not ideal to have your top corner suspended for the game, does sound excited to see what Roby can do.
“This is huge for Roby,” Joseph said, per Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post. “He’s been our third corner for a couple of years. He’s a guy that I’ve seen as a starter, so this is his chance to prove that he can go out and be a front-line starter for us against some really good receivers. It should be fun to watch.”
One thing that’s interesting: Roby has one year left on his contract. Talib will be 32 years old at the start of the 2018 season.
Roby was a first-round pick. The Broncos have used him as their No. 3 corner because Talib and Harris are so good. However, they’re getting close to the point where they could lose Roby in free agency. He would start on most teams in the NFL. If they want to rebuild, which they may need to do, focusing on youth makes the most sense. That could mean moving on from Talib and promoting Roby.
In any case, this start against the Dolphins is a chance for Roby to prove he can do it. The 2017 season may be lost, but the Broncos can still learn what they have for the future.