Broncos guard Chris Kuper broke his leg week 17 and missed the Broncos’ two playoff games. When he got hurt, he was given a 4-6 month recovery and he seems to be right on track. Once considered a possible candidate for the PUP, Kuper could be ready for June minicamp, this according to DenverBroncos.com.
Kuper graded out as the Broncos’ 2nd best offensive lineman in 2011, according to ProFootballFocus. He’s an awful run blocker, but was above average as a pass protector. His presence was missed in a playoff loss to the Patriots where Tim Tebow was under pressure on seemingly every play. His return will be a welcome addition to a Broncos offensive line that graded as ProFootballFocus’ 8th worst pass blocking offensive line and absolute worst run blocking offensive line.
The upgrade from Tim Tebow to Peyton Manning will help, but Manning is 36 and coming off of 4 neck surgeries so they can’t afford to let him take a lot of hits. The only possible upgrade they got in the offseason was Philip Blake, a 4th round pick who can play guard and center. At some point, he might be their starting center over JD Walton, who graded out as ProFootballFocus’ worst center.