Local military experienced the combine Friday morning at the UCHealth center as part of military appreciation.
ENGLEWOOD, Colo.** – Fifty local military members from different branches of service took to the UCHealth Center Friday morning to participate in an NFL-style combine in an event put together by the Broncos and USAA.
The men and women all had the opportunity to compete in the drills similar to those used by NFL coaches to evaluate potential talent. Under the watchful eye of Broncos greats hanging from the walls of the Broncos field house, military members participated in the 40-yard dash, three-cone drill, broad jump, vertical jump and bench press.
"The NFL military combine we run with the Broncos is a great partnership between the Denver Broncos and USAA," said Brian Eaton, director of sponsorships for USAA. "As the official military appreciation sponsor it's important for us to showcase military appreciation, to show the military community how much we love and respect them all year long. This is a great opportunity for the military to come out and demonstrate their physical fitness in the drills that are actually conducted at the NFL Combine."
The combine represents the evolution of military appreciation events that USAA and the Broncos are creating to foster understanding and appreciation for the local military community.
Jonathan Leger and Samuel Macklin were two participants at the combine for the first time.
"This is really cool," said Leger. "I've never done a 40-yard dash or done cone drills or anything like that. I played football in high school but we didn't do anything like this. I'm really appreciative that I got chosen to come up here."
Macklin echoed Leger's excitement and awe at the event.
"I'm thankful I can be here," Leger said. "It's definitely a once in a lifetime thing. They hooked us up and it's just nice to get our here and meet like-minded people and have a good time. I'm looking forward to meeting the players."
Following the event, the participants got the opportunity to enjoy a VIP hospitality area where they watched the Broncos' training-camp practice, took photos with the Lombardi trophies and met Broncos players after the session.