Gordon: Will continue to fight to remain the Broncos’ top RB

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ENGLEWOOD, Colo. Denver Broncos running back Melvin Gordon III believes most have already named Javonte Williams as the team’s top back, but Gordon said Monday he is not ready or willing to give up his chance at the job.

“I told [Broncos general manager George Paton] when I was on [negotiating] board, I’m not going to lie down, I do not want to lie down, ” Gordon said. “… I’ve always had the mindset that I have to pick it up every year.

“I know a lot of people want me to take the back seat and I get it,” Gordon added. “It’s been like that for a while, it’s been like that with Chargers – everyone wanted Austin [Ekeler] to begin. I’m just coming out here and doing mine. Thank you for the motivation everyone, I appreciate you. ”

Monday was the first day of the Broncos’ mandatory minicamp, so it was also the first time Gordon had practiced with his teammates. Gordon has not participated in any of the volunteer parts of the team’s offseason program, including a volunteer minicamp that the Broncos had last month – teams with new coaching staffs are allowed to have an extra minicamp in their offseason.

Gordon signed a one-year deal to return to the Broncos just before the NFL draft in April. He had said as the 2021 season drew to a close that he was hoping to potentially find a bigger workload with another team in the free agency.

Last season, Gordon and Williams each had 203 carries, and Gordon led the team with 918 yards, rushing to Williams’ 903 yards. Gordon battled hip, shoulder and thumb injuries down the stretch, but missed just one game last season – the Broncos’ Week 13 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.

And after waiting more than a month in free agency, I chose to return to the Broncos, with Williams and his colleague also running back Mike Boone in the new coaching staff’s plans.

“I put my best foot forward every time I go out there and see what happens,” Gordon said. “The goal is to make them want to play against me … Me and [Williams] going to do it. I do not know how to cope with reps and all that … I do not care how old people think I will be, I’m fine. I’ve shared the ball since I joined the league, so this is nothing new. ”

Williams, who had worked as No. 1 in most of the team’s work on the field so far in the free season, was the Broncos’ second-round pick in the 2021 draft and was named the league’s All-Rookie team by season.

Williams said earlier in the season that he has consistently kept in touch with Gordon and that “if I have to share carries, or if I’m the starter, it does not matter. Whatever it is, I’m just trying to win Super Cheers. ”

Gordon said he arrived back in Denver last week and spent some time in the team facility, but that he did not participate in any of the work on the field before Monday’s practice.

Gordon said the Broncos’ deal to acquire quarterback Russell Wilson was “a game-changer” in his decision to rewrite with the Broncos without any guarantees of playing time. He also called coach Nathaniel Hackett “a cool guy … he really changed the atmosphere around here.”

“We’re excited to put him in there and watch him roll,” Hackett said Monday. “… He’s a spectacular running back, he’s been a great running back in this league for a long time and you can not have too many running backs. ”

Gordon has rushed for 6,144 yards and 53 touchdowns and has 284 receptions for 2,244 yards and 14 touchdowns in seven seasons.

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