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Brandon McManus turns to self-reflection to improve after 2017 season

Posted May 15, 2018

McManus said Tuesday he holds himself to a standard reserved for the best kickers in the NFL.

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Brandon McManus would likely be the first to tell you his 2017 season left something to be desired.

Just over 18 months removed from a dominant postseason in which he made all 10 of his field goals, McManus struggled in the early stages of the 2017 campaign.

He missed field goals in four of his first five games, including a 1-for-3 performance in Week 5 in which he missed a 35-yard attempt and had a 53-yard try blocked.

And while he improved as the season continued, stringing together a five-game stretch in which he missed just one of 11 kicks, he finished with his lowest field goal percentage since his first season in Denver.

That led McManus, who served as a captain in 2017, to do some serious self-evaluation in order to improve his game.

“I think I do the self-reflection during the season,” McManus said Tuesday at the Broncos’ PLAY 60 All-Ability Clinic. “I started out terribly, [but] throughout the year I continued to make more and more kicks. So I was happy with that.

“This year I’m looking forward to a rebound year. I hold myself to be one of the best kickers in the NFL, so coming up short, as I was, motivates me more than ever, and I’m excited.”

McManus will have several new faces to help him as the Broncos inch closer to the 2018 season.

Punter Marquette King will likely hold for McManus, who said Tuesday he was “excited to get him in early and work with him.”

McManus can also turn to new Special Teams Coordinator Tom McMahon, who joins the Broncos after a lengthy stint in Indianapolis.

“I knew Tom coming out of college,” McManus said. “I went to the Colts out of Temple [as a college free agent]. … He’s more [more focused on the] whole special teams group — with kickoff, kick return, punt, punt return. Obviously he has tidbits, and he remembers my form coming out of college. I’ve changed a little bit since then, but he obviously [has] a good eye to see you. He’s been a coordinator in the league for a long time now.

“I’m excited to have him. He brings a different energy as well to the practice field, as well. He’s kind of been a yeller and will let people know if anything’s going wrong. I’m excited for him to be here.”

Ultimately, though, McManus’ success could likely be self-determined — and he’ll spend the next few months aiming to present the best possible version of himself.