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Extra film study and battles vs. Russell Wilson preparing Pat Surtain II for Year 2

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Pat Surtain II and the Broncos still have several more weeks of organized team activities and a week of mandatory minicamp before they break for the summer.

When he and his teammates leave UCHealth Center for the six weeks between the end of the offseason program and training camp, Surtain's work will only begin.

As Surtain looks to build on his first season that garnered him All-Rookie honors, those weeks will be used to fine-tune his game.

"The best thing that I can do is to be able to work on little bits and things — little pieces of my game or add little bits and pieces to my game," Surtain said Thursday. "Also, work on things that you know you're good at, but you know that you can improve on, too. Just that little bit of management for myself. That's what I'll be able to do."

The offseason regimen will also include some film study, as Surtain said he'll begin to turn his focus toward some of his early opponents. In the first few weeks of the season, the Broncos will see some of the NFL's best playmakers, including DK Metcalf in Seattle in Week 1 and Deebo Samuel against the 49ers in Week 3.

When the regular season arrives, Surtain and the Broncos will certainly game plan to slow those players down. During the summer, though, Surtain will turn in some early work.

"You start on it early, before training camp, before we start on that phase of training camp," Surtain said of the film work. "Just keeping an eye on them, keeping an eye on tendencies, looking at route concepts — all of that — and what they like to do. You can always get an eye on them early."

Those small advantages could be the difference for Surtain as he looks to improve upon a year in which he recorded the most interceptions by a Broncos rookie in nearly 40 years.

"I think that the next step is to keep on building on [2021], keep on growing and keep on learning every day because in the league, you learn from experience," Surtain said. "That's the best thing about it — growing and utilizing your time wisely so you can understand what it takes to be a pro in this league. That's what I'm doing."

Surtain has gotten — and will continue to get — that experience in practice as he goes up against Russell Wilson and the Broncos' wide receivers. On Tuesday, Surtain had tremendous coverage on a deep route by Courtland Sutton down the left side. Surtain stayed stride for stride with the taller wide receiver and extended his arm to make the play difficult on Sutton.

The coverage was great. The throw and catch were even better.

Surtain acknowledged Thursday that sometimes, despite his best efforts, Wilson is good enough to throw and indefensible pass.

"It was a great ball," Surtain said. "I was in great coverage and it was just an amazing throw."

As the still young player looks to improve, that sort of test is invaluable.

"It helps me a lot, going against premier talent like that with a great quarterback and great perimeter players," Surtain said. "That helps me as a player and build on my game. It's always great going against them."


Some of the lasting images from the 2021 season are of Javonte Williams barreling through multiple defenders.

He moved a pile against the Cowboys and carried Baltimore's Marlon Humphrey on his back for 20 yards.

Williams carried his collegiate reputation of physical play to the NFL, and he'll continue to rely on his bruising style as he enters Year 2.

Asked whether he would ever consider stepping out of bounds at the end of a run to avoid a hit, Williams just chuckled.

"Nah," Williams said. "I've been doing that my whole life, so I'm just going to keep doing it."

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