To gain some appreciation of how fierce the level of competition for playing time in the NFL truly is, it is necessary only to look at Australian Adam Gotsis’s experience as a second round pick with the defending World Champion Denver Broncos.
In two regular season games, Gotsis has seen limited action. He played just five downs in the Broncos’ season opener against the Carolina Panthers. The following week, he played 11 downs against the Indianapolis Colts.
His fate is not uncommon for NFL rookies and Gotsis must deal with the additional handicap of playing on the NFL’s top-ranked defense from last season, meaning that he will continue to see limited time, despite the Broncos being somewhat thin at the defensive lineman position.
It would be reasonable to expect Gotsis to get more opportunities as the season progresses. He has major college experience playing for Georgia, so his is not a case of a code jumping Jarryd Hayne. Over the course of a 16-game schedule, fatigue plays a role that requires fresh bodies, and while it is never proper to hope a teammate should be injured, it happens with frequency.
Gotsis understands this reality and seems to be adapting nicely. When he has had opportunities, he has avoided the sort of glaring errors that can result on a long-term spot on the bench to the degree that he is currently listed as the number two option for the Broncos at the defensive end position.