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Fifteen players to watch at Broncos training camp - 7. Matt Paradis

Posted Jul 20, 2017

After rehabilitating from two hip surgeries, Paradis is set to return for training camp and resume his role as the leader of the offensive line.

Sometimes it seems hard to believe that Matt Paradis is still just a third-year veteran who won't be eligible for unrestricted free agency until after two more seasons.

He hasn't missed a snap since moving into the starting lineup for the first game of the 2015 season. His rapid maturation -- the product of intelligence and wisdom beyond his years and a season of work with Peyton Manning -- helped him become one of the offense's leaders and an alternate selection to the Pro Bowl last season.

Paradis did all that despite enduring two hip injuries that necessitated two offseason surgeries and nearly six months of rehabilitation.

His recovery went as scheduled, and when training camp begins, Paradis is expected to be in uniform and ready to go, although Head Coach Vance Joseph said he expects to "work him in slow" to get him up to speed.

Nevertheless, if there is any player on the offense who can miss an entire offseason of repetitions and still hit the ground running in a new scheme, it is Paradis.

"The mental side of the playbook, he’s got it locked down already," guard Max Garcia said in May.

Although the Broncos are moving away from a pure zone-based blocking scheme, the change should not hurt Paradis. The Broncos will use many concepts they utilized in 2014, when they drafted him in the sixth round.

It's just a question of how he holds up after two surgeries -- and how quickly he finds chemistry with a line that could include three starters who were not on the team last year if first-round pick Garett Bolles beats out Ty Sambrailo for the left tackle position.

The changes up front -- with Ron Leary at one guard spot and Menelik Watson expected to work at right tackle -- make it essential that Paradis quickly gets back up to speed.

"When he gets back up there, we’ll be moving in full stride," Garcia said. "I’m excited to see him get back and be healthy and being able to rock and roll.”

Matt Paradis