Broncos Hope Youth Serves Them Well In Kicking

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) - The Denver Broncos are turning to youth in the kicking game.

When the Broncos start the season Monday, they'll rely on unproven Broncos kicker Matt Prater and rookie punter Brett Kern.

The team is also counting on rookie Eddie Royal to provide a spark in the return game.

Prater will be replacing Jason Elam, the team's all-time leading scorer who left for Atlanta in the offseason.

He has had a solid preseason, hitting 9 of 11 field goals, including his last six in a row, and all eight of his extra-point attempts. Prater also blasted 18 of his 22 kickoffs into the end zone, including 11 for touchbacks.

Kern averaged 46.4 yards on nine punts in the preseason.

(Copyright 2008 By The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)