PJ Locke says Broncos DC Ejiro Evo is a player’s coach, ‘Put the learning curve on him’ –

Ejiro Evo at Broncos minicamp. Credit: Ron Chenoy, USA TODAY Sports.

These Denver Broncos are a talented bunch.

Offensively, the team’s looking to finally get the most out of their receivers thanks to the addition of superstar quarterback Russell Wilson, while Melvin Gordon and Javonte Williams are a two-headed monster in the backfield. New offensive coordinator Justin Outten recently shared some of the Broncos new-look offense, but we all know most of it will be hidden until it’s revealed during games.

New head coach Nathaniel Hackett is working with Outten and the rest of his offensive staff to blend their offense with Wilson’s style, an ongoing evolution which will see some bumps in the road as the year goes forward.

The same can be said for the defense, and simply, the Broncos will go as far as their coaching staff takes them this year.

Luckily, it sounds like Ejiro Evo is doing a great job on that side of the ball.

Fans in Broncos Country have become accustomed to Denver’s defense leading the way for many years. Of course, now Vic Fangio is gone after three seasons, and so is his dominating defensive scheme. That leaves it up to Evo to keep the defense strong through a time of turnover in the Mile High City.

Not only has the play-caller changed, but key players like Von Miller and Alexander Johnson are gone as the team is changing schemes.

“As far as the defense, it’s not a huge learning curve,” backup safety PJ Locke explained on the Let’s Talk Broncos podcast recently. “A few tweaks here and there. Other than that, it’s pretty smooth.

“Coach E., he’s a player’s coach,” Locke continued about his new defensive coordinator. “So anytime Justin [Simmons] or K-Jack [Kareem Jackson] feel like something should be run some type of way, or terminology — the biggest thing is using terminology. Coach E. is such a player’s coach that some of the terminology we used last year, he was OK with using it this year. Putting the learning curve on him instead of us. It goes a long way. It goes a longer way than he even thinks because that’s one less thing we have to worry about.”

Now that is what we call a player’s coach, ladies and gentlemen. Evo could have come in and swung his clipboard around, ruling the defense with an iron fist. Instead, he decided to work with the players, earn their respect by actually learning their terminology rather than the other way around. Which, of course, is how it usually goes.

As Locke explained, that goes a long way, not only in earning trust but it will help the Broncos get off to a quicker start with less new terminology to learn, too.

And it’s not just that, but the team-building and energy change at Dove Valley has been clear this year as well.

“But yeah, the energy is crazy,” Locke said. “We’re just super excited for the season. I just think it’s big things coming.”

Most fans in Broncos Country are certainly expecting big things this year, even with all the turnover of players and the new coaching staff. Evo seems to have the right idea in terms of getting this group all on the same page as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Denver is currently in the middle of their offseason with training camp kicking off on July 27 ahead of the regular season in September.

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