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Mile High Morning: Why a Texas connection could be key to Broncos safeties' success


The Lead

There will be a bit more burnt orange in the Broncos' locker room in 2024.

In recent weeks, the Broncos re-signed safety P.J. Locke and wide receiver Lil'Jordan Humphrey and added safety Brandon Jones and defensive tackle Malcolm Roach. All four players attended the University of Texas, as did safety Caden Sterns, who remained under contract.

In a recent story for The Athletic, Nick Kosmider examined how the Texas connection between the three safeties — Jones, Locke and Sterns — could help the Broncos in the defensive backfield.

The three built a relationship during their college years, as Jones and Locke were already at Texas when Sterns arrived as a freshman.

Former Texas co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach Craig Naivar credited both Jones and Locke for Sterns' initial development.

"Brandon and P.J. really did a good job helping Caden as a true freshman," Naviar told The Athletic. "They had both been brought along by older guys before them, and they did a really good job with Caden of being a big brother, being a mentor and getting him ready to play college football."

The three players will now reunite at the NFL level and look to help contribute to a new-look safety group following the departure of longtime starter Justin Simmons.

"It's going to be like college all over again," Jones told "I know that the connection and friendship we've been able to establish over the years, that will be a huge factor with our success, especially on defense."

The Unclassifieds

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