Broncos HC Vance Joseph explains Von Miller’s absence in preseason opener
The Denver Broncos faced the Minnesota Vikings in their preseason opener on Saturday night with a noticeable absentee. Star linebacker Von Miller didn’t participate as he was held out by head coach Vance Joseph.
When asked about his star’s exclusion from the team, Joseph clarified that it wasn’t due to an injury but rather due to simple injury prevention.
“We felt he’s had a good training camp,” coach Vance Joseph told reporters after the game per Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk. “Obviously, Von is valuable to our football team. He’s a guy who we can’t lose, so we didn’t play him — simple as that.”
It’s completely understandable for Denver to decide not to play not just their best defensive player, but their best player full stop. As the preseason has already shown once again, it’s rife with unnecessary injury risk, which the Broncos justifiably don’t want to take with their superstar pass rusher.
As Joseph reports, Miller appears to be having a good camp, which is promising news. The Broncos believe that playing a few more snaps at a slightly higher intensity (and much greater risk) during preseason won’t be of much benefit to a proven star and veteran like Miller.
The Broncos are playing the smart game by keeping Miller out of preseason and limiting his chances of getting hurt. Even if he doesn’t play a snap, they should be fairly confident that their defensive star will be in decent enough shape — and more importantly, not injured — heading into the start of the season.