CENTENNIAL, Colo. -- Garett Boles need not apologize for the way he plays. And he won't.
He won the left tackle job by throwing saw dust on the ground and putting on brass knuckles. Even after four penalties last week against San Francisco, Bolles has no plans to soften his approach, he told Denver7 in an exclusive interview Wednesday.
"I am not going to change the way I play. I am not going to change the way I bring energy onto the field because if I do that I am not who I am. Mr. (John) Elway brought me in for a reason because be who I am and do what I do. I move people off the ball. I put people in the ground That’s the way I play," Bolles said after a second-straight long practice. "There’s little things I have to fix. I know that. But I am never going to change those two aspects of my game."
Energy, attitude and pancake blocks. Welcome to Bolles' world. Lofty expectations greeted the first-round draft choice. All he had to do was solidify a spot that has been leaking oil since the final healthy days of Ryan Clady. Bolles claimed the job early in training camp, exhibiting whistle-to-whistle effort and brutish physicality. His reaction to his place on the depth chart illustrates his desire to be great.
"I am not here yet man. I still got two preseason games. I have to prove myself every single day," Bolles said. "That’s awesome that they said that (he's starting) but coach (Vance) Joseph and them they are just being nice. I appreciate what they are saying. They know where my heart’s at. They know where I need to be to be successful when we open the season.”
Bolles defies convention. He's a married 25-year-old rookie with a young son. He turned roughly four years of football experience into a potential longterm career. Bolles brings an edge, and also a protective nature to an offense that is widely seen nationally as the reason the Broncos will struggle to reach the playoffs.
"If guys think that, that’s your interpretation. That’s not we believe out here. We do have a championship defense," Bolles said. "When you have look at those teams that are successful, defense wins championships. But they also have an offense, and they push each other. We are going to push each other everyday."
Joseph on protests
Coach Vance Joseph revealed his stance on protests of the national anthem which remains a hot-button issue in the NFL. The number of players making a statement has increased over the last week.
"I have not spoken to our team about it. My opinion, it is a personal preference. I believe in the anthem," Joseph said. "It's special on game day to stand, so that's me personally. But, our players are grown men. I respect the fact that they have the freedom to protest. Right now I am focused on football."
Von in action
When Von Miller insisted he was DFW -- Down for Whatever -- he wasn't kidding. Miller wants to play and will receive that opportunity Saturday. Coach Vance Joseph will get Miller a few snaps against the Green Bay Packers in his first and only tuneup for the regular season opener on Sept. 11.
Safety T.J. Ward (right hamstring) dressed for practice, but was limited. The team plans to ease him back in slowly. He practiced Tuesday, followed by Wednesday's light day. "The goal is to have him ready for the regular season." ... DeMarcus Walker will continue to work with the outside linebackers, while also being available as a "hybrid" player to rush the passer as a defensive end, according to defensive coordinator Joe Woods. ... Kasim Edebali will start opposite of Miller, but the Broncos are rotating players there. The Broncos remain hopeful that Shaquil Barrett will be available for the season opener along with defensive ends Derek Wolfe (ankle) and Jared Crick (back). ... I told TE Jake Butt I was sorry about his, um, Ohio State haircut. "Me too," Butt said. ... Domata Peko continues to impress in camp. He dominated multiple rushing drills and continues to provide leadership for a defensive line looking to make significant improvement. ... Max Garcia and Allen Barbre remain in a "tight" race for the starting left guard spot. Joseph hopes to finalize starters on both sides of the ball after Saturday's game.