Broncos TE Greg Dulcich Can't Afford Another Injury Setback

Greg Dulcich has all the potential in the world, but can he stay healthy?
Jul 28, 2023; Englewood, CO, USA; Denver Broncos tight end Greg Dulcich (80) during training camp at Centura Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 28, 2023; Englewood, CO, USA; Denver Broncos tight end Greg Dulcich (80) during training camp at Centura Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports / Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Entering the 2023 season, the Denver Broncos had high hopes for tight end Greg Dulcich, especially after what Sean Payton said about him during the offseason programs, where the head coach praised his receiving ability and potential suitability for the much hyped 'joker' role in his offense.

That ended quickly, as Dulcich went down with a hamstring injury in the Broncos' season opener. Dulcich's hamstring issue has lingered since being drafted in Round 3 back in 2022 and remains an impediment to staying on the field. Ultimately, Dulcich played in two games, totaling 32 snaps in the 2023 season. 

There's also been a lingering issue with Dulcich's foot, which has sidelined him through the Broncos' offseason program, and his hamstrings are unreliable, with multiple issues over his two seasons. You can see his potential and what he can bring to the offense when he's been on the field. Ultimately, the best ability is availability, and Dulcich hasn’t been available. 

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Dulcich's absence was keenly felt in the offense last year, as the tight end room grappled to fill the void. Of his limited 32 snaps, 21 were as a receiver, where he was targeted four times, making three catches for 25 yards.

In contrast, the other four members of the Broncos' tight end room had a combined total of 36 catches, and there were 28 individual tight ends across the NFL who outperformed Denver's entire position in terms of receptions. The team's reliance on it dynamic tight end was evident, and the Broncos struggled to find a suitable replacement. 

Lucas Krull was eventually tapped to answer that bell, and while he showed some flashes, he couldn’t be a consistent contributor. He played 166 snaps, a little over five times Dulcich's amount, but was targeted barely three times as much and had a little under three times the receptions.

If Dulcich can’t stay healthy again this year or fails to make the roster, the Broncos need a lot of growth from Krull. 

Adam Trautman is a solid rotational tight end, but the Broncos need a true threat from the position. That leaves Nate Adkins, an undrafted rookie last year, and Thomas Yassmin, an undrafted rookie this year.

Adkins would need to take a large step forward as a player to have much on his plate this year. As for Yassmin, he qualifies for a roster exemption as an international player (Australian-born), and the Broncos will likely take advantage of that with him on the practice squad. 

Bottom Line

The Broncos' tight end room is one of the worst in the NFL, if not the worst in the NFL. Sure, the tight ends have potential, but potential doesn’t mean much unless it starts to materialize in the field.

Dulcich or Krull? Either of them can potentially fill the dynamic tight end role the Broncos need, but neither has shown they can do so consistently enough. 

While Dulcich has struggled to stay on the field, Krull is inexperienced, but he also doesn’t have the injury concerns. Krull has been reported to look solid during the offseason work and has earned praise from the coaches, which is a significant advantage over Dulcich, who has been unable to participate thus far.

Hopefully, whoever wins the job can show up consistently and help save the Broncos' tight end room. 

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Erick Trickel

ERICK TRICKEL

Erick Trickel is the Senior Draft Analyst for Mile High Huddle, has covered the Denver Broncos, NFL, and NFL Draft for the site since 2014.