Dalton Risner, Broncos’ work in community a bright spot in dark season – The Denver Post


Eleven things about the Broncos as they try to snap a 13-game losing streak to the Chiefs on Sunday at Empower Field.

1. It’s been a bad year for the Broncos offense by just about every on-field measure. This past week, though, also showed some of the good that happens around an NFL organization. Denver nominated offensive lineman Dalton Risner as its candidate for the Walter Payton Man of the Year award and his coaches and teammates jumped at the chance to laud him for his efforts in the community.

2. Risner, of course, is a Wiggins native and in his fourth year as a pro (and the final season of his rookie contract). Said head coach Nathaniel Hackett, “He’s been our rock on the offense. I think he hasn’t missed a game yet. We’re so grateful for that, and all the stuff that he does off the field is absolutely incredible, along with our entire team. Very much congratulations to him.”

3. Quarterback Russell Wilson won the top honors from the NFL in 2020 — if Risner does the same, he’ll get a $250,000 donation to the charity of his choice — and marveled Wednesday at Risner’s work off the field.

4. “We have so many guys in this locker room that do such amazing work,” Wilson said. “… It’s an amazing, amazing leader we have in Dalton Risner and how he goes about his business, how he impacts the community, impacts the locker room, and impacts everybody around him. He’s a tremendous, tremendous man, person and teammate. He’s everything that you could ask for.”

5. Wilson also lauded second-year running back Javonte Williams for starting his own foundation to help foster families in the Denver area. Williams grew up in a family that fostered kids and held a launch party Monday night that was attended by a sizable group of Broncos players.

6. “(Williams) was dressed to the nines with his little cowboy hat on. The place was going crazy,” said Wilson, one of the attendees. “I think Justin Simmons and (Pat Surtain) got them really going early. … I think that this team has tremendous leaders and people that want to impact the community. It starts with the guys up top with Justin and Dalton and so many others. The best thing these young guys can do is understand that this game gives you amazing opportunities to impact people. That’s what Javonte has been doing.”

7. Williams, of course, has been out since suffering a season-ending knee injury in Week 4 against the Raiders. He’s been around the facility some, as has left tackle Garett Bolles, who was lost for the season to a fractured right leg days later against Indianapolis. Each have long recoveries ahead, but would be welcomed returners either at the outset of 2023 or somewhere into the season.

8. With center Lloyd Cushenberry still on injured reserve recovering from a groin injury, the Broncos will likely roll again with Calvin Anderson at left tackle, Risner at left guard, Graham Glasgow at center and then Quinn Meinerz and Cam Fleming on the right side. This would be the fourth straight game that quintet has played together, representing the most continuity the front line has had since Weeks 2-5.


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