Smoky Hill grad Chase Vaughn gets shot with Broncos

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Any transaction involving the Denver Broncos generates a lot of interest in Colorado, but one that came out Monday held particular interest locally.

Linebacker Chase Vaughn — a graduate of Aurora’s Smoky Hill High School — was among three players signed by the Broncos in moves that brought their roster to the maximum of 90 players.

Chase Vaughn
Smoky Hill grad Chase Vaughn hits the sled during the Denver Broncos’ NFL football rookie camp on May 17, 2014, in Englewood. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)

The 6-foot-2, 248-pound Vaughn participated as a tryout player in Denver’s rookie minicamp last week and joined the roster along with safety Charles Mitchell and wide receiver Greg Hardin.

Vaughn — who excels in rushing the passer — hopes to catch on with the Broncos after sticking to football and paying his dues at a variety of other levels, including the Arena Football League (with the Spokane Shock), United Football League (with the Las Vegas Locos), Canadian Football League (Calgary Stampeders) and Indoor Football League (Colorado Ice).

Vaughn played defensive end and tight end at Smoky Hill, which has gone through some lean years in football in the recent past, and graduated in 2006 and signed with Adams State, where he played for two years. He moved on to Colorado State-Pueblo and racked up 10.5 sacks in the 2008 season, which included a school record 4.5 in one game, and was an honorable mention Division II All-American selection. He added five more sacks as a senior in 2009 — setting the program’s career sack record — and finished at the school in 2011 with his degree in exercise science.

Courtney Oakes, Sports Editor