Broncos linebacker Shane Ray will make his first start of the season in his hometown.
After missing the first six games of the season with a wrist injury, Ray, the former standout at Missouri and Bishop Miege, will start Monday night against the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium.
“Shane looked great in practice; obviously he’s not in great football shape,” Broncos coach Vance Joseph said after practice on Wednesday. “But Shane’s going to play. He’ll start.”
Ray will take his spot on the opposite side of Von Miller in hopes of improving Denver’s pass rush.
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“Shane provides, opposite of Von, that great pass rusher so they can’t tee off on Von, they can’t chip both guys. … Having Shane back, he’s obviously a great player and guy that plays with great energy — that’s going to help our defense.”
Ray, who will be on a snap count, said stopping the Chiefs’ running game, led by NFL rushing leader Kareem Hunt, will be the Broncos’ first objective.
“We plan on taking care of the run game because that’s what they thrive off of,” Ray said. “Stopping the run is key, then being able to attack (quarterback) Alex Smith.”
Ray recorded eight sacks in 2016.