Broncos CB Champ Bailey vs. Falcons WR Julio Jones: Bailey, a former Georgia star, has played in 11 Pro Bowls. His 32 interceptions since he joined the Broncos in 2004 rank fifth in the NFL. His 50 interceptions overall rank first of all active NFL cornerbacks. The Steelers converted 11 of 19 third downs against the Broncos last week, and Jones could be a force on that key down. “He’s been in the league 13 years, and he knows the game,” Jones said of Bailey. “They have great corners. They are good enough to play us man-to-man.”
Broncos RDE Elvis Dumervil vs. Falcons LT Sam Baker: Dumervil, a former Louisville standout who led the NFL in sacks with 17 in 2009, is considered one of the better pass-rushers in the league. He ranks third in the NFL since 2006 in sacks per game (.69). He had 9.5 sacks last season. Baker is coming back from two back surgeries last season and will face a much stiffer test than in the season opener.
Broncos WLB Wesley Woodyard vs. Falcons RB Jacquizz Rodgers: Woodyard led the Broncos with 12 tackles, one sack and two tackles for losses against Pittsburgh. Rodgers had seven carries for 25 yards and caught two passes for 13 yards. Woodyard will get some relief against the run when Keith Brooking comes in, but in pass coverage he’ll likely end up on Rodgers. Woodyard is a strong open-field tackler, and Rodgers has some moves. It will be interesting to see who wins their battles.
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