News: Lt. progressing, working hard during Bronco's training camp
Story by Senior Airman Christopher Gross
BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- The National Football League regular season is quickly approaching and players are moving fast and hitting hard to prepare themselves for those demanding games.
Thousands upon thousands of people have been corralling into the Denver Broncos training camp facility since July 26, to get a glimpse of this year's team.
One of those individuals is Benjamin Garland, Broncos defensive end and a lieutenant with the 140th Wing Public Affairs, Buckley Air Force Base.
His dedication was noticed during practices, as drill after drill he was commended for his hard work and proper form.
"Excellent," was shouted frequently by one of his coaches. Garland was always one of the first to get to the next drill station and stepped up to participate in the drill first.
Participating in his second NFL training camp, Garland said thus far it's been easier under certain circumstances, but it's still a challenge.
"It was a lot easier coming in this year in the sense of I knew the facilities, I knew the coaches," said Garland, "but then a lot more challenging in a lot of other senses."
However, Garland said learning a new defense, under new coordinator Jack Del Rio, has been the most challenging aspect of training camp. Garland said he will be expected to know the ins and outs of everybody's assignment and where he needs to line up and where he needs to go when the ball snaps.
Learning a new defense isn't the only challenge Garland's been faced with and said he feels there's not one area in particular for improvement.
"With being in the National Football League, everyone is pushing it a little bit harder every single day. There's not a single area where you can't make improvements, I'm just trying to be as good as I can be," said the Air Force Academy alumni.
The best advice Garland said he's received to overcome these challenge has been from Bronco's special team's captain and weak outside linebacker Wesley Woodyard. Woodyard told him to continue to work as hard as he has been and to keep pushing it to that next level every time he steps out on the field.
"He's done a lot of good things; his thing is he hustles to the ball," said Woodyard. "The biggest thing with him, I always tell him, never stop being the player that you are. Be first in line, be first down the field."
Woodyard, in his fifth NFL season, said he was impressed with how Garland played during the Bronco's first preseason game of the season against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field.
He said he looked good with the playing time he got and, "it was good to see him out there and flying around and making some plays. The thing about him, he's physical."
Garland said he's appreciated all the advice he's been getting from the veteran's and he's going to take and incorporate it the best he can into every practice and game.
"You love the challenge, you love to step up and take it on," Garland said. "You love to work with your team."