ENGLEWOOD, Colo. --With a need for experienced depth on the defensive line in the wake of Vance Walker's torn anterior cruciate ligament, the Broncos announced the signing of seven-season veteran Henry Melton on Monday.
To make room for Melton on the 90-man roster, the Broncos waived offensive lineman Sam Carlson.
The 6-foot-3, 290-pound Melton has been an effective interior pass rusher, working mainly as a tackle in 4-3 alignments with the Chicago Bears (2010-13), Dallas Cowboys (2014) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2015). He has a career average of 4.5 sacks per 16 games over his career.
Melton had 13 sacks over the 2011-12 seasons with the Bears, but played just three games in 2013 after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament. He rebounded from the injury to post a 5-sack season with the Cowboys in 2014.
A one-season reunion in Tampa Bay followed; he rejoined his former Bears head coach, Lovie Smith. Melton had 30 tackles, two sacks, two passes defensed and a forced fumble in a rotational role with the Bucs.
Walker's injury left the Broncos without much experienced depth at defensive end. Beyond starters Derek Wolfe and Jared Crick, Billy Winn was the only end with any regular-season experience on the roster, although nose tackles Sylvester Williams, Darius Kilgo and rookie Kyle Peko can all bounce outside and work as 3- and 5-technique ends.
The 29-year-old Melton is a product of the University of Texas and is a native of DeSoto, Texas -- the same city in which Von Miller played high-school football. Unlike Miller, Melton matriculated at Grapevine High School, 36 miles northwest of DeSoto on the other side of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.