Updated March 24, 2012 @ 12:37 p.m. ET
The Broncos announced Friday morning that they have agreed to terms on a contract with Texans UFA TE Joel Dreessen.
Dreessen, a six-year NFL veteran who played his college ball at Colorado State, reportedly will be given a chance to start in Denver. He was a valuable backup behind TE Owen Daniels in Houston.
Dreessen, 30, caught 28 passes for 353 yards with a career-high six touchdowns last season. For his career, he has 110-1,364-13 receiving (12.4 avg.).
He joins a young TE corps in Denver that includes two second-year players in Virgil Green and Julius Thomas and a third-year player in Cornelius Ingram. Later Friday, the team also signed former Colts free-agent TE Jacob Tamme, a four-year veteran.
Dreessen was making the free-agent rounds and was looking for a greater opportunity than he had during five seasons in Houston. He’s not a great fantasy tight end but did have a solid 2011 campaign, posting 28-353-6 on 39 targets and was a TD vulture. In two seasons he has piled up 10 touchdowns, a solid feat for a tight end with 64 receptions in that span — a touchdown every 6.4 receptions.
In six seasons — 91 games with 34 starts — he amassed 110-1,364-13, and he'll have an opportunity to start. However, look for him to keep his TD vulture role and to be the primary blocking tight end as Jacob Tamme has an advantage. Tamme knows the offense and has built a rapport with new Broncos QB Peyton Manning.
Dreessen has value in larger leagues as a matchup play, but watch how he’s used to determine his full value. Remember, the team has Julius Thomas, whom it will view as the future more than Dreessen.