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Broncos Offseason: Nate Irving Taking Over At Middle Linebacker Full Time In 2012?

The Denver Broncos have a lot to sort out during the offseason, and not all of their issues revolve around quarterback Tim Tebow. According to The Sporting News' Andrew Mason, who broke down the Broncos' offseason checklist Sunday, head coach John Fox needs to find out what he's going to do with the middle linebacker position.

"Starting middle linebacker Joe Mays is an unrestricted free agent," wrote Mason. "He might not have started at all in 2011 had there been a normal offseason; the lockout scuttled organized team activities, so third-round pick Nate Irving had no chance to adequately learn the defense. The Broncos like Irving's presence and potential. It would be no surprise if they give him the job and part with Mays."

Last season, Irving did not start and played mostly on special teams, tallying just three tackles. In 2009, while still at N.C. State, Irving suffered a broken leg and a punctured lung. However, he successfully came back from that in 2010 and worked his way into being a mid-round draft pick.

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