Upgrade Your Fandom

Join the Ultimate Denver Broncos Community!

Five things you might not know about Josey Jewell

Henry Chisholm Avatar
May 2, 2018

The Broncos picked Iowa Hawkeyes linebacker Josey Jewell with the 106th overall pick in the fourth round. He’s more of a thumper than a coverage specialist, and he’ll compete with Zaire Anderson and sixth-round pick Keishawn Bierria for the backup inside linebacker job.

Here are five things you might not know about Josey Jewell:


Despite the accolades Jewell collected in college, the Broncos were able to pick him in the fourth round because scouts say he’s undersized and a sub-par athlete.

These are the same labels that have followed him since high school.

Jewell, a two-star recruit out of high school, had decided to take a scholarship from Division-III Luther College over a partial scholarship from FCS Northern Iowa, when Iowa offered him a full-ride late in the recruiting process, in spite of his physical limitations.

”He has a knack,” Iowa linebackers coach Seth Wallace told Sports Illustrated. ”Sometimes it’s hard to describe, and you can’t describe it, but he’s a football player. He has this internal drive that he wants to be best he can be.”


Jewell may not have been a top-tier recruit coming out of high school, but he made a name for himself in at Iowa.

He led Iowa in total tackles in three straight seasons, racking up 126 in 2015 (second in the Big Ten), 124 in 2015 (second in the Big Ten) and 132 in 2017 (first in the Big Ten). In his senior season, Jewell was a consensus All-American, the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and won the Ronnie Lott Trophy as the nation’s defensive player with the biggest impact.


Maybe you’re tired of the “they’re all leaders” narrative around this draft class, but listen to this.

Kirk Ferentz, Iowa’s longtime head football coach and father of former Broncos center James, never brought underclassmen to the Big Ten Media Days. For 17 years, not a single non-senior was chosen to represent the team.

Then came Josey Jewell, the first sophomore captain under Ferentz at Iowa.

“He’s achieved something that no player’s done in the last 17 years at our place,”  Ferentz told the Daily Iowan. “He’s a tremendous representative. He’s done a great job on the field, a great leader. We’re thrilled to have him here.”


Jewell has a pretty particular pre-game listening routine.

The All-American listens to the same playlist every week. It starts with some 70s bands like Boston and REO Speedwagon and gets into heavier and heavier rock until it’s time to take the field.

”When I get on a football field, I just kind of turn a switch,” Jewell told Sports Illustrated.


Jewell may not be a Colorado native, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t bleed orange.

Shortly after he was drafted, Jewell posted a collage of photos on Instagram showing him in Broncos gear as a kid:



Share your thoughts

Join the conversation

The Comment section is only for diehard members

Open comments +

Scroll to next article

Don't like ads?
Don't like ads?
Don't like ads?