ENGLEWOOD, Colo. --Whether Ty Sambrailo has recovered enough to start at left tackle or not, Head Coach Gary Kubiak made it clear that on the right side, Michael Schofield would remain in the starting lineup.
Schofield was promoted to the first team after Sambrailo's injury forced eight-year veteran Ryan Harris to left tackle. But Kubiak believes that Schofield's progress during the first three starts of his career was sufficient to justify keeping him there.
"Michael has done a really good job. I think that he's an improving player every week," Kubiak said.
"Even if Ty does come back, I don't see Ty playing 50, 60 plays. That's not going to be the case, so yeah we'll stay just how we are."
That gives Schofield a chance to continue settling in at right tackle, the position at which he was projected after playing there for much of his career at Michigan before being the Broncos' third-round pick last year.
"I'm just trying to focus on myself and improve every single game, and every single practice and focus on getting better at one thing," Schofield said. "I felt like that was one thing I did in those games: get a little bit better in each game."
For example, Schofield felt he made strides as a pass blocker in the Week 6 win at Cleveland, and that bore itself out; he didn't allow a sack for the first time as a starter.
His development was at the point where he needed repetitions to take the next step. He got plenty of them, playing every offensive snap in October.
"Getting live reps in a real game is definitely going to help you out -- and especially help your confidence," Schofield said. "That's really big at this position.
"I've just got to become a more consistent player at every aspect of the game. In the run game, I've got to do cut blocks better. In pass protection, I could be more firm."
Offensive Coordinator Rick Dennison sees the same growth as Schofield does.
"Just like the group, I think he keeps making strides," Dennison said. "Each day, you see his technique getting better and honing in because he's working at it and he's working really hard at it."
Our top shots from Thursday's practice include some nice catches and work on blocking. (all photos by Ben Swanson unless otherwise noted)