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20 days, 20 Broncos camp questions -- 3. What's next at long snapper?

Posted Jul 10, 2016

Casey Kreiter and rookie Nathan Theus will compete for the job -- and the Broncos hope the winner will do well enough to keep it a while.

Nathan Theus and Casey Kreiter

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- It would come as no surprise if the battle between Casey Kreiter and Nathan Theus lingers through most of the preseason. But what fans see in preseason games will only represent a fraction of the data used to determine who wins the job, as every snap in practice will be cataloged and disseminated.

"The biggest thing is obviously the snap. We want to see good rotation on the ball every time," Special Teams Coordinator Joe DeCamillis said in May.

But it is more than just snaps that will determine the job -- it is how they quickly rise and effectively prevent a rush up the middle.

"The biggest issue with snappers -- and really it happens in college or it doesn’t happen in college -- is the protection part of it," DeCamillis said.

"That’s what we really have to see from these guys in camp. We're going to try and stress it as much as we can because every time we line up for a punt there is a possibility of a rush."

Until full pads go on during training camp, that aspect of their work will remain a little bit of a mystery.

Kreiter's advantage is his experience. He spent the last two summers in camp with the Cowboys, which followed 40 games of snapping work at the University of Iowa. Theus was Georgia's long snapper for the last four seasons, but makes his NFL debut this summer.

Either way, the Broncos hope they find a snapper who could be at least a four-year answer to the question of how to replace Aaron Brewer.