ENGLEWOOD, Colo.** – When inside linebackers Brandon Marshall and Danny Trevathan both suffered injuries last season, their absence during the offseason became an opportunity for linebacker Lamin Barrow; an opportunity that Barrow didn't take for granted.
"It was good for me, just getting comfortable in the system, getting comfortable at mike [linebacker]," Barrow said. "I think the difference between here and college, when I played in college, I didn't make too many calls. Just coming out here and being in front with these guys. When you're commanding guys like Von Miller and [Demarcus] Ware, you have to be in front of the huddle to gain a lot of experience. I did it last year and this year, so [I'm] just getting more comfortable in my role."
With the addition of new Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips and his 3-4 scheme, Barrow has been relishing in his new opportunities.
Spectacular catches highlight the best photos of training camp from Day 13. (All photos by Eric Bakke)
Last season, Barrow saw action in 16 regular-season games with one start in his rookie season. He made one tackle on defense and ranked eighth on the team in special team tackles with eight.
"With guys like Danny, Brandon, Todd [Davis], Steve [Steven Johnson] doing a great job, me and Corey [Nelson], young Zaire [Anderson] and Reggie [Walker], I think everybody has a role that they're playing right now," Barrow said. "I think it'll kind of weed itself out during the preseason. In the games, we'll have more and more exposure, so it's feeling good right now."
With the return of Marshall at the start of training camp, Barrow might be losing some reps but he's still learning under Marshall's mentorship.
"He's been helping a lot," Barrow said of Marshall's advice. "Brandon's been like a brother to me. Him, Danny and a lot of the guys, we help each other. We're a competitive group, as you can see if you watch practice. We all make plays and we all have our mistakes. We try to help each other. We make a big play—we're cheering each other on. It's a great chemistry in our group."
Although he didn't see much action on defense, there's no doubt that Barrow has the talent to make a break through in 2015. A 2014 fifth-round draft pick out of LSU, Barrow was a second-team All-Southeastern Conference member selection following his senior campaign after racking-up 91 tackles, including three contests with double-digit tackle totals.
And Barrow knows that the Broncos' preseason game at Seattle on Friday evening will be his best shot at proving he has what it takes.
"I think OTAs and training camp is pretty much cut and dry," Barrow said. "You're out there banging against your brothers, but when you to a preseason game, a game like Seattle, it's a lot of competition out there. It's kind of giving you an opportunity to search yourself on the team, and show us your worth."