Quinn Meinerz gives up “a lot of dairy products” in effort to shed weight for zone blocking scheme
NFL 

Player attendance

Did not practice: Physically unable to perform list — OLB Randy Gregory (shoulder), RT Billy Turner (knee) and OL Tom Compton (back). Did not practice: injuries — S Caden Sterns (hip), CB K’Waun Williams (knee), WR Tyrie Cleveland (throat), DL D.J. Jones (back) and WR Kendall Hinton (knee).

S Kareem Jackson was back on the field after a rest day Thursday, as was OLB Christopher Allen (foot). S PJ Locke, who was tended to by trainers after a collision on the very last play of Thursday’s practice, was back at it Friday, while Hinton was seen catching tennis balls on the sideline.

Coach Nathaniel Hackett said Gregory and Turner continue to work with the training staff in an effort to return to the field in time for the regular-season opener. “I think they are right on track,” Hackett said. “We want those guys for Week 1. That’s what we’re aiming for.”

Hackett on Williams: “We’re just going to work him back in the right way and just continue to rehab him and make sure he’s good. But we’re hoping (he returns) sooner than later.”

Compton has missed all nine practices, Williams five practices, Cleveland and Jones four apiece, Hinton three, and Sterns has missed two.

Odds and ends

*The Broncos went without pads after a heavy day Thursday, marking the second time in three days that Hackett opted for what amounted to a jog-through.

Hackett previously cited a third-day rule he’d followed during his time in Green Bay, where the Packers would go light after two days with pads. But on Friday, the plan was to build back up to another “heavy day” Saturday prior to Sunday’s off day rather than finish the week with a light practice.

“It’s about what we can do to make those hard practices the most efficient and best that they are,” Hackett said.

*Despite going half speed without pads, Hackett insisted his team still got a lot out of Friday’s workout. “When you see the players start correcting, or self-correcting, or communicating and wanting another play, that’s what you’re aiming for as a coach.”

*Hackett is hoping to go out with a bang with full pads Saturday before an off day Sunday: “I want another day like (Thursday). … Just that reaction — fast, feeling fresh, feeling that pop full speed — I think that’s what you’re always hunting for when you get pads.”

*RG Quinn Meinerz said he shed “a solid 10 pounds” in an effort to slim down for the switch to Hackett’s zone blocking scheme that requires lineman to play fast off the snap and often play in space. The Wisconsin-Whitewater product said his goal weight is between 315 and 320 pounds.

As for the key to his weight loss?

“I gave up a lot of dairy products,” Meinerz said with a laugh. “Gotta stay away from the whole milk and the high-fat meats. It’s an adjustment, but this is my job, and this is what I love to do, so it was easy to give them up.”

Asked about his teammate’s claims, starting ILB Josey Jewell quipped: “We might have to check him on the scales.”

*The Broncos opted to bring Jewell back on a two-year deal this offseason, and he will once again be counted on to relay plays. He will organize new coordinator Ejiro Evero’s 3-4 scheme on the field.

“You can never be comfortable, you can never be complacent, but that makes me feel refreshed that they wanted me back, they wanted me to be in the middle of the defense controlling things, communicating between everybody.”

Jewell suffered a season-ending pectoral tear on a special teams play in Week 2 last year. Would he consider doing special teams again this fall? “Whatever they want to do, I’m open for anything.”

*Jewell on the challenge of going against QB Russell Wilson every day in practice: “I think that’s bringing everybody’s level of intensity up, and intelligence of the game, too.”

One example: Wilson switching up his cadence depending upon the situation. “It’s definitely helping the offense and helping the defense just to be able to get a great look every single day,” Jewell said.

*Jewell seemed to support Hackett’s decision to drop 7-on-7 drills in favor of more 11-on-11 work during camp. “It’s just getting the whole picture. … In 7-on-7, for us, you can cheat it (on defense): It’s a pass so you’re just going to start setting back right away (rather than making a read). … So you just have to be on your toes, still take those first reads and still get that first second of the down in.”

*The biggest roars from the crowd Friday came while Wilson threw footballs into a net downfield during early practice drills. Yes, it was that kind of day.

Saturday’s schedule

Practice at 10 a.m. (parking lot opens at 8 a.m. and gates at 9 a.m.).

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