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TE Owen Daniels - Denver Broncos

6-3, 250Born: 11-9-1982College: WisconsinDrafted: Round 4

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Photo: Ron Chenoy, US Presswire

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Preseason player page

He is listed as probable on this week's official injury report.

News you need to know

General News (Fri Feb 5): practiced fully on Friday and is expected to play this week.

General News (Thu Feb 4): practiced fully on Thursday.

General News (Wed Feb 3): practiced fully on Wednesday.

Week 21: vs Carolina Panthers

All TE vs CAR

Mark and Joe say: Tough matchup. According to Bucky Brooks at, Peyton Manning targeted 62% of his passes within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage during the regular season, and he connected on 69.9% of those throws with four touchdowns and nine interceptions. During the playoffs, 63% of his throws are of the short variety, with 35% of his throws between 10 and 19 yards, which was up from 24% during the regular season. Manning has thrown 20 of his 24 pass attempts at intermediate range to the right or middle of the field during the playoffs. The takeaway here is that Manning has thrown 98% of his passes to short or intermediate range during the two full playoff games that he has played since returning to the starting role in Week 17 of regular season. Here's what he's done in the playoffs - vs. Pittsburgh, Manning compiled 21/37 for 222 yards passing, zero TDs or interceptions thrown, with one successful two point conversion thrown to Demaryius Thomas (eight for 4/40/0). Emmanuel Sanders led the team in receiving with eight targets for 5/85/0 receiving - nobody else on the Broncos had over 40 yards receiving in the Divisional Round. During the Conference Championship showdown with New England, Manning threw a 21-yard and 12-yard TD pass to Owen Daniels - 2/33/2 receiving total for Daniels - Daniels added several yards-after-catch to the actual tosses from Manning, and Manning wound up with 17/32 for 176 yards, two TDs and zero interceptions thrown. Demaryius Thomas was awful with seven targets for 2/12/0 receiving, while Emmanuel Sanders led the team with eight targets for 5/62/0 receiving. Nobody other than Daniels or Sanders went over 20 yards receiving during the contest. The Denver passing attack is anemic entering the Super Bowl, friends. As Manning himself noted on February 2: 'My arm is what it is. Honestly, my having a little time off to heal my foot helped some of the other parts... My arm feels OK. My arm has not been the same since I was injured four years ago... If I could throw left-handed it would be a lot easier... It's just different than it was... It's got a few yards on it, miles on it, however you want to say it.' The good news for Broncos' fans is that Manning has reined in the interceptions thrown (he hasn't thrown an interception since getting back in the game Week 17). The bad news is that, as Carolina showed against Arizona two weeks ago, the Panthers are a ball-hawking secondary and they have compiled six interceptions (most among playoff teams) and eight sacks (second-most among playoff teams) over their two playoff games, to go with their 24 interceptions (first in the NFL in this category during the season) and 44 sacks generated during regular season. Manning threw nine TDs and 17 interceptions during his time on the field during regular season. Carolina comes into this game with injuries to some key defensive players - defensive end Jared Allen is working hard to overcome his fractured foot and play in Super Bowl 50, but he simply may not be healthy enough to play on Sunday - outside linebacker Thomas Davis broke his arm in the NFC Championship game, had surgery to put a plate to strengthen the fracture, and will have to wear some combination of cast/soft-cast/brace if he is well enough to play in the contest against Denver. Davis said on Monday, February 1 that he could be limited in Super Bowl 50 against the Denver Broncos, but he has every intention of playing in the game. He returned to practice and used a cast Monday. The practice status of each defender warrants attention during the late-week practices leading up to the Super Bowl. The Panthers finished regular season ranked 11th in the NFL averaging 234.5 net passing yards allowed per game, but they had less TDs allowed (21) than interceptions generated (24) - in fact, the Panthers turnover ratio of +20 was first in the NFL by far, and they led the NFL in interceptions as noted above. Over the final four weeks of regular season, Carolina wound up averaging 19.6 fantasy points per game to opposing quarterbacks (in the middle of the NFL range at 17th); averaged 22.4 fantasy points per game allowed to opposing wide receivers (18th); but were seventh-least in fantasy points allowed to opposing tight ends (5.7 per game on average). So far during the playoffs the Panthers have averaged 276 yards passing allowed per game (but they have won by jumping out to big leads, winning 49-15 vs. Arizona and 31-24 vs. Seattle - both teams had to throw the ball a lot to try and compete with the Panthers), with four passing scores given out vs. six interceptions generated. Carson Palmer looked dreadful in Charlotte two weeks ago (23/40 for 227 net yards passing, one TD and four interceptions thrown, with three sacks taken for -8 yards). In the Divisional round, Russell Wilson finished with 31/48 for 325 net yards passing, three TDs and two interceptions, with five sacks taken for -41 yards. The Panthers have been hard on both quarterbacks they've seen during the playoffs. This looks like a very tough matchup for the aging Manning and his receiving corps.

Recent Stats and Projections

17 vs SD 45 1 15 0 0 1.5
19 vs PIT 0 2 10 0 0 1
20 vs NE 51 2 33 2 0 15.3
21 vs CAR PROJ-Dodds * 3 * * * *
21 vs CAR PROJ-Tremblay * 4 * * * *
21 vs CAR PROJ-Bloom * 2 * * * *

Recent Game Summaries

2015 Week 20 vs NE (3 / 2 / 33 / 2 rec)

With Demaryius Thomas struggling again, the Broncos needed someone to step up and help Emmanuel Sanders. That guy ended up being Owen Daniels. It's been a quiet season for Daniels - a quiet one for the entire Denver tight end group in fact - but he came up with two huge catches in the first half of Sunday's game, both of which were touchdowns. On the first score, Daniels ran a tight end seam route, slipping behind the middle linebacker and emerging wide open as the safeties had both shifted to cover the receivers. As soon as Owens got open, quarterback Peyton Manning threw the ball to his tight end. Neither the linebacker nor the safety could correct their position in time and Owens easily caught the ball, sauntering into the end zone. The second touchdown was on a fade pass from Manning. Daniels had a step on the defender and Manning dropped the ball perfectly in Daniels hands for the score.

2015 Week 17 vs SD (1 / 1 / 15 / 0 rec)

With a run-heavy gameplan and both Thomas and Sanders playing well, Owen Daniels only received a single target against the San Diego Chargers, a short pass over the middle on 3rd-and-4 that Daniels took for 15 yards.

2015 Week 16 vs CIN (7 / 5 / 70 / 0 rec)

Through the first 58 minutes against the Cincinnati Bengals, it was hard to tell tight end Owen Daniels was even on the field; he had 2 catches and 16 yards on a pair of forgettable dumpoffs over the middle. After the two minute warning, though, Daniels became Denver's biggest offensive playmaker, snagging a short pass at the right hashmark and rumbling for a 16 yard gain, then following it up with a great grab deep over the middle for 26 yards, getting Denver nearly into range for a potential game-winning field goal in just two plays. After Denver's field goal at the end of regulation missed, Daniels again came up big on the first drive of overtime with a 12-yard gain to convert 3rd-and-10 deep in their own territory, sparking a drive that eventually resulted in the winning three points.

2015 Week 15 vs PIT (5 / 2 / 14 / 0 rec)

With Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas both playing so well, Owen Daniels saw less action than usual against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Daniels' offensive contributions were largely limited to converting a third-down in the first half en route to another touchdown. Daniels also had a terrible drop on 1st and 10 after Pittsburgh had tied the game up in the second half.

2015 Week 14 vs OAK (4 / 3 / 43 / 0 rec)

Despite a dumpoff-heavy gameplan that usually plays to his strength, Owen Daniels received very little work against the Oakland Raiders as fellow tight-end Vernon Davis was more heavily featured. Daniels received only four targets, and his only play of note came on a short catch over the middle with nothing but green grass in front of him that Daniels was able to run for 32 total yards.

2015 Week 13 vs SD (3 / 2 / 13 / 0 rec)

Owen Daniels had a quiet game as the fourth option in the passing game behind Demaryius Thomas, Emmanuel Sanders, and new tight end Vernon Davis. Daniels drew just three targets, none after halftime as Denver largely concentrated on running out the clock, and failed to register a single first down.

2015 Week 12 vs NE (6 / 5 / 48 / 0 rec)

As he's been all year, Owen Daniels served as a reliable outlet on rollout passes and when Denver's downfield receivers were blanketed. While he's still unable to make much happen beyond the catch point, Daniels managed to haul in five of his six targets for the Broncos against New England, helping keep the team in manageable down-and-distance situations.

2015 Week 11 vs CHI (5 / 4 / 69 / 0 rec)

With Denver opting to funnel so much of its offense through the tight end position against the Chicago Bears, Owen Daniels led the team in receiving yards and finished second in receptions. The bulk of Daniels' receiving yards came on well-designed screens, including a 31-yard catch-and-run. The lone target that came more than 5 yards beyond the line of scrimmage was a 3rd-and-7 pass that Owen Daniels got two hands on but failed to bring in.

2015 Week 10 vs KC (5 / 1 / 14 / 0 rec)

On a day where there were few good targets to go around, Owen Daniels never had much opportunity to make an impact for the Broncos against the Chiefs. His lone catch for 14 yards was offset by a terrible drop on 2nd-and-17, and the remaining targets mostly sailed wide or otherwise off the mark.

2015 Week 9 vs IND (9 / 6 / 102 / 1 rec)

Despite the Broncos making a splashy trade at the deadline to acquire tight end Virgil Green, Owen Daniels wound up leading the team in receiving against the Indianapolis Colts. As he has for much of the season, Daniels largely served as a third option when both Thomas and Sanders were covered. He's not as fast or athletic as he was in his youth, and his production after the catch largely consisted of running forward in a straight line at a moderate pace until tackled, but Daniels did plenty of damage against a distracted Colts defense, including a trio of 20-yard targets, (one a short catch-and-run, and two intermediate to deep routes) and a 1-yard touchdown where he seemed to be the second or third read.

2015 Week 8 vs GB (3 / 3 / 44 / 0 rec)

The 32-year-old Daniels isn't the athletic threat he once was, but he still managed to catch 3 balls (on 3 targets) for 44 yards against the Green Bay Packers. Daniels' repertoire largely consisted of catching the ball and running straight ahead, but several poor tackling attempts by the Packers allowed him to do some decent damage after the catch. In a game where everything was going right for the Broncos, everything went right for Daniels, too.

2015 Week 6 vs CLE (3 / 2 / 24 / 0 rec)

While technically the third option in Denver's offense, Owen Daniels is largely an afterthought as the Broncos funnel an overwhelming percentage of their passing game through their two star receivers. As usual, most of Daniels' targets came on plays where Sanders and Thomas were well covered. Against Cleveland, Daniels managed to convert his four targets into nondescript 24 yards. He should remain as much of an afterthought in fantasy as he is in reality.

2015 Week 5 vs OAK (5 / 0 / 0 / 0 rec)

Coming in against a defense famous for their struggles against tight ends, much was expected of Owen Daniels. Unfortunately, Daniels failed to show up on the game-ending stat sheet, with nary a catch on five targets. Some of the missed connections were not his fault-- a goal-line pass that was batted at the line of scrimmage, a second goal-line pass where Daniels was jammed and the ball wound up nowhere near him. On others, such as a dropped pass on 2nd-and-8, Daniels deserved his share of the blame. At the end of the day, though, Daniels remains a past-his-prime veteran who Manning looks to largely when his primary choices are covered.

2015 Week 4 vs MIN (5 / 2 / 9 / 1 rec)

Owen Daniels has been a target of last resort through the first quarter of the season, and Sunday's game will do nothing to change that status. Daniels hauled in just two of his five targets, including a particularly egregious drop on 3rd-and-5. Daniels' touchdown was a triumph of play design, as the defense was fooled and Daniels was left all alone in the left side of the end zone for the throw-back.

2015 Week 3 vs DET (9 / 5 / 28 / 1 rec)

Owen Daniels' nine targets tied for second-most on the team against Detroit, but Daniels only finished with 28 yards to show for them. By and large, the poor performance was not Daniels' fault. He was on the receiving end of a pair of no-hope screen passes where Manning was swarmed under with defenders immediately and simply getting rid of the ball. He had another 12-yard pass that was thrown just beyond his fingertips, and his fourth incomplete target came on a 3rd-and-13 pass that was knocked down by a defender before it reached him. Daniels did make up for those low-value targets with an 11-yard touchdown on 3rd-and-6, but by and large he solidified his role as someone who is only looked at when all else has gone wrong.

2015 Week 2 vs KC (5 / 3 / 19 / 0 rec)

With his familiarity with coach Gary Kubiak's offense, much was expected from the veteran Daniels. Through two games, Daniels has failed to live up to expectations, functioning mostly as a seldom-used tertiary target when Peyton Manning finds himself in trouble. Daniels' 5 targets were third on the team, but with a pair of stars on the outside in Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas soaking up most of the opportunities, what few targets Daniels got were typically hurried and unproductive.

2015 Week 1 vs BAL (2 / 2 / 5 / 0 rec)

Owen Daniels virtually never left the field for the Broncos against the Ravens, but was nonetheless an afterthought against the Ravens. He received only two targets for the game, only one of which was designed. On his designed target, he caught the ball just short of the first-down marker, but made a savvy move to step back and avoid the tackle before pressing forward to convert. His only other target came when Manning, beset by the pass rush, flipped the ball to him left-handed for a loss of four.


Latest News

Broncos | Peyton Manning, Owen Daniels probable (Fri Feb 5, 06:30 PM) - Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning (foot) and TE Owen Daniels (knees) both practiced in full all week and are probable to face the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50.

Broncos | Peyton Manning, Owen Daniels practice (Thu Feb 4, 07:31 PM) - Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning (foot) and TE Owen Daniels (knees) once again practiced in full Thursday, Feb. 4.

Our View: Daniels is one of Manning's favorite targets, and the veteran tight end might be looked at early and often in the red zone.

Broncos | Peyton Manning, Owen Daniels fully practice (Wed Feb 3, 07:35 PM) - Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning (foot) and TE Owen Daniels (knees) were full participants in practice Wednesday, Feb. 3.

Broncos | Peyton Manning, Owen Daniels probable (Fri Jan 29, 05:58 PM) - Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning (foot) and TE Owen Daniels (knees) both practiced in full all week and are probable to play in Super Bowl 50 against the Carolina Panthers.

Broncos | Peyton Manning, Owen Daniels full go (Thu Jan 28, 06:06 PM) - Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning (foot) and TE Owen Daniels (knees) were full participants in practice Thursday, Jan. 28.

Our View: Over a week away so we aren't obsessing over every practice report, but this is a good sign both will be ready to go next week.

More News

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