ENGLEWOOD, Colo. –Hours after the Broncos lost Dan Koppen for the 2013 season with a knee injury, the club signed Steve Vallos to rebuild the depth in the center of the offensive line.
The newest Bronco made his training camp debut Monday morning.
"That is part of the game and you hate to lose guys, sometimes you lose them temporarily, but you hate to lose them for the whole season especially," Head Coach John Fox said. "But we feel good about who we have lined up, we just have to get him trained in our system and we will get that done."
Vallos was drafted in the seventh round of the 2007 draft out of Wake Forest by the Seattle Seahawks. He spent his first season in the league on the Seahawks practice squad and made his first start in 2008, replacing an injured player.
He has played for three other teams, most recently the Jacksonville Jaguars. In his six-year career he has played in 44 games and registered nine starts.
"From what we have gathered, and I've only seen one practice, he is smart and a good player," Fox said. "He has played in the league, so we will see where it goes."
Last year the Jaguars brought in Vallos after they suffered an injury on their offensive line.
"It's unbelievable how fast guys get hurt," Vallos said. "I was in similar situations last year, guys get hurt and I got to come in and learn stuff. There are great coaches, great players here and I'm just trying to fit in."
Having played for four different teams and being signed twice in the span of a week last season by the Jaguars, Vallos is no stranger to the free agency process and knows that it's important to always be ready for the call.
"Just stay in shape – obviously, lifting, running, all of that stuff," Vallos said. "The mental aspect of it is I've played for six years so I've been through a lot of systems, a lot of different types of coaches and players and it just adds to my repertoire here."
Right now, Vallos said he's trying to get adjusted to the new faces and terminology, though he has one familiar face in Offensive Consultant Alex Gibbs, who at one point was his position coach in Seattle.
Vallos said he spent "pretty much the whole morning" with Gibbs as he got accustomed to his new surroundings.
Though the learning curve can be steep when players join a team during training camp, Vallos said that it all starts with getting comfortable.
"It's just being comfortable with the quarterback, with the other O-linemen," Vallos said. "It just takes time and we just have to make the most of what we have."