ENGLEWOOD, Colo. – It will be a preview of things to come if it all goes as the Denver Broncos plan when they finish the current $35 million construction project at their team complex that will include an indoor practice facility.
The Broncos have, after plenty of back and forth between the two teams in this offseason, finished a deal to have the Houston Texans practice against them for three days in August before the two teams play a preseason game Aug. 23 at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.
The Texans and Broncos will practice together Aug. 19-21. This time around fans will not see the action as the Broncos have been forced to close training camp practices to the public because their on-going project will not be completed by the time the players report for training camp on July 23.
But there is every reason to expect the Broncos will be a popular summer stop in the future. The Broncos’ new indoor complex will include full locker room and training room facilities for a visiting team.
It would mean teams could simply bus their players to the complex and get ready for practice without using a hotel ballroom as a locker room or worry about other logistics. It will give the Broncos the kind of on-site facilities few teams can offer.
As a result, the Broncos expect teams to visit for training camps in the future.
As far as this August the Texans, with first-year coach Bill O’Brien, one of the league’s most dominant defenders in J.J. Watt and the No. 1 pick of this May’s draft -- Jadeveon Clowney -- it will offer the potential for some quality work.
“A good break for both sides to compete against a different style of offense and defense as well as different players,’’ Broncos coach John Fox said.
“It’s always good to do that when you can,’’ Broncos defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio said. “Especially after a couple weeks of camp, you’re seeing the same things from your offense and they’re seeing the same things from us. It can be very beneficial as long as both teams work with the idea you’re going to practice and not spend the day being chippy.’’
The Broncos practiced against the Texans twice in the preseason during Mike Shanahan’s tenure as coach -- both in Houston, in 2003 and 2005. The last team to work against the Broncos at their Dove Valley complex was the Dallas Cowboys in 2008.