When the Denver Broncos signed Jamaal Charles to a one-year, $3.75 million contract, they were hoping for a good deal on a potential starting running back. According to Charles himself, that’s only the first part of his plan in Denver.
"I want to come here and bring the energy, the experience. I want to come here to show people what I can do.” Charles said in an ESPN interview.
The Kansas City Chiefs’ third round in the 2008 NFL Draft, Charles has played in nine seasons, all in Kansas City up until now. By the 2015 season, he was the NFL's all-time leader in career yards-per-carry among running backs, with a 5.5 average.
Unfortunately, he’s missed the majority of the last two seasons recovering from an ACL tear, leaving lingering doubts about Charles’ physical ability to compete across a full season.
The Broncos have given Charles another opportunity to prove himself, and the 30-year-old is going to take full advantage of it.
"When I left Kansas City, I was still at the top. It was just the injury. You can't really control injuries. You just wish for good luck” Charles said of the last few seasons. When asked if he thought he could take the starting running back role from either C.J. Anderson and Devontae Booker he didn’t leave much room to doubt his commitment and confidence:
“Why not think I'm going to be the man? You think I'm just going to come up here and [pauses]? No, that's never been me in my whole life," he said, in an interview with Nicki Jhabvala of the Denver Post. "My whole life, I'm always going to feel like I'm going to be the man. That's why I wanted to come here. If I'm not going to be the man, why am I here? I should be at home and sitting on the couch."
"I want to come in and compete. Make everybody better, make the running backs better, turn Booker into a Pro Bowl running back when I leave here and turn C.J. into an All-Pro," Charles said of his aspirations in Denver.
"I want to come here and bring the energy, the experience. I want to come here to show people what I can do. I don't want to just show up and people are like, 'Oh, Jamaal's here.' No, I want to show up and compete with my teammates and show them that I am good and I'm still at the top of my career."
When the Broncos signed Charles, they were hoping for a veteran RB to help fill out their depth chart. If he can fend off injury and can live up to his own expectations for himself, the Broncos may get a whole lot more than that.
Jamaal Charles at Broncos OTAs, from @NickiJhabvala
Source: NFL.com · Photo Credit: KEYSTONE PRESS