In the years since he helped power the Broncos to the franchise's third Super Bowl victory, former running back C.J. Anderson has stayed around the game. After his playing career, Anderson began a coaching career that's now taken him to the college ranks as Rice's running backs coach.
In a new story, Pro Football Network's Aaron Wilson details that transition and how it has roots in Anderson's time with the Broncos. Being around a football mind like Peyton Manning in particular shaped how he viewed the game.
"It all started early in my career when I was in Denver, playing with a guy like Peyton and knowing that audibles can be called at any time, you had to be a master of the playbook," Anderson told Wilson. "Me and Peyton would meet a lot in the mornings and talk about the things that go with the game of football. When I moved over to play for the Rams, it was all about grabbing that playbook and dissecting it. I think that's when I became a better football player. That was defining."
In those meetings, Manning was able to see he had something of a kindred spirit, which he now identifies as a skill that should make Anderson a promising coach.
"C.J. was very inquisitive," Manning told Wilson. "He always asked questions and wrote things down in a notebook. To me, those are good signs of being a studious player. And a lot of those qualities translate into being a good coach. I think C.J. will do a great job. He was always a smart player. He should do a great job relating to those guys in recruiting and lead by example by working hard and doing the right things. That shows the young players the way."
For more on Anderson's journey and insight from former Broncos head coach Gary Kubiak, be sure to check out the full story.
Below the Fold
After an eventful offseason across the league, many teams look quite different as the 2022 season approaches. But for NFL.com's Adam Rank, the Broncos stand out from the rest as far as which excites him the most.
"[When you're a team that was already pretty decent and you add a top-five quarterback, that to me changes everything," Rank said. "This Broncos team goes from being a mid-card level team to one that should be competing for the Super Bowl. I think that Russell Wilson brings that to this team. This is a major upgrade. So I really want to see what they're able to put together, especially in that AFC West. As we go through, we see the Chargers add guys on defense, the Raiders added Davante Adams. But to me, no bigger move this entire offseason was bringing in Russell Wilson."