FanPost

My All-Time All-Bronco Drafted Team


Draft time brings about a lot of optimism.  Now is the time of hopes and dreams about how we can return our beloved Broncos to championship contenders.  While many are looking ahead, I’ve decided to take a look at the drafts of the past to create an all-time all-drafted team.  My goal was to create a 53-man roster based solely on players drafted by the Broncos.  I tried to keep players at a position they played at some point in their career.  Based on personnel and my defensive coordinators recommendation, I am going with a 3-4 base defense.  Without further ado, I will introduce my team after the jump

 

QB

Right out of the gate I cheated.  I know John Elway was not technically drafted by the Broncos, but there was no way I was leaving him off this team.  He is a no brainer starter for the team.  My back-up is Jay Cutler and 3rd stringer is Tim Tebow.  I will probably get flack choosing Cutler and even Tebow, but when the options are Gary Kubiak, Tommy Maddox and Brian Griese, there really are not many options.  Cutler wins the #2 spot in spite of his attitude and the way he left the team.  Elway and Tebow can keep him in check.  Worst case scenario, we can trade him for a few 1st round picks…:-)

RB

Another no-brainer starter is Terrell Davis.  He brought a couple championships to Denver and that is enough of a reason for me.  I don’t even need to mention the MVP and 2000 yard season.  I gave the 2nd string nod to Floyd Little over Clinton Portis.  Little gets the nod because he is a Bronco for life.  Portis had a good career and makes a good 3rd stringer. 

FB

This position was tough as we really have not drafted many true full backs.  I chose Peyton Hillis as my 1st stringer with Mike Anderson backing him up.  Hillis brings a lot to the passing game and Mike Anderson is a bruiser with an Offensive Rookie of the Year award on his resume. 

WR

This one was a toughie because we have not drafted many great wide receivers.  I’d love to put Rod Smith on the team, but I already used my cheat on Elway.  My starters are Brandon Marshall and Vance Johnson.  We all know about Marshall’s talent and Johnson ranks 5th on our all-time receptions list.  Backing them up are Steve Watson and Mark Jackson who rank 7th and 10th respectively on our all-time receptions list. I added a 5th receiver in Eddie Royal who adds value as a return specialist.  In addition to Smith, Ed McCaffrey, Lionel Taylor and Haven Moses were not drafted by the Broncos.  The best of the rest drafted by Denver is led by Ashley Lelie.  Enough said.

TE

The only question here was who is backing up Shannon Sharpe.  The answer is easy – Riley Odoms.  Odoms is 6th on our all-time receptions list and had a solid career with the Broncos.  Clarence Kay was one of the final roster cuts.  Maybe we’ll try to sneak him on the practice squad.

LT

Ryan Clady is my starter and backed up by Claudie Minor.  I never saw Minor play, but he had 123 starts and protected Morton’s blind side.   In his rookie year, Clady was named to the All Pro second team.   That makes him the most decorated tackle ever drafted by the Broncos.

LG

Doug Widell is the starter backed up by Keith Bishop.  Not a lot of glitz and glamor here, but a couple solid NFL players.  George Goeddeke just missed making the roster.

C

Tom Nalen is hands down the starter with Ben Hamilton serving as the back-up.  Nalen was named to the first team All Pro team twice (2000 and 2003) and once to the second team (1999).  He also anchored our line during our 2 Super Bowl wins.  Hamilton can also move over to G if needed.

RG

You gotta go with Dan Neil as the starter and Cooper Carlisle edged out Chris Kuper for the back-up role.  Neil was also a critical cog in our Super Bowl wins.  With a lot of guys on the o-line from the Shanny era, we will be running with the zone blocking system.

RT

Ken Lanier is my starter with Ryan Harris backing him up.  There were not many choices here, but lanier started a respectable 167 games at LT.  Matt Lepsis was an undrafted free agent, otherwise he makes the team.

RDE

No doubt Lyle Alzado is my starter and is backed up by Rulon Jones.  Alzado brings some serious nastiness to the defense.  He had 112 ½ career sacks and is a guy you need to game plan against. 

NT

Rubin Carter is my starter and backed up by Keith Traylor.  Carter held the NT position for 154 games from 1975-1986.  Not sure how he did that at only 256 pounds, but he did it for 10 years.  At 340 pounds, Traylor may be more of a current day NT.

LDE

Trevor Pryce is starting with Paul Smith and Barney Chavous backing him up.  Pryce has 91 career sacks and has played all along the line in both 3 and 4 man fronts.  He can be a very disruptive force.  Smith played several positions along the line and is in our Ring of Fame.  He played well before my time.  Chavous started 178 games, mostly alongside of Rubin Carter and Rulon Jones.

ROLB

Tom Jackson gets the starting nod over Elvis Dumervil.  Most people know Jackson as Chris Berman’s partner on ESPN.  When Jackson was teamed up with randy Gradishar, he was a beast of a linebacker.  In his 14-year Bronco career, he was voted the team’s Most Inspirational Player 6 times.  While most of us like Dumervil, he has a long way to go to catch Jackson.

RILB

Randy Gradishar is my starter without a doubt.  He was the heart and soul of the Orange Crush defense.  It’s a shame he is not in the Hall of Fame.  I debated between who was backing him up between John Mobley and Michael Brooks.  I gave the nod to Mobley with brooks still making the roster. 

LILB

As much as I love Al Wilson, I had to give him the back-up role to Karl Mecklenburg.  Mecklenburg was drafted in the 12th round and ranks second on our all-time sack list with 79 ½.  Three times he was named a first team All Pro and once to the second team.  Injuries cut Wilson’s career way too short.  He could have been one of the all-time greats at his position.

LOLB

Simon Fletcher earns the starting nod with DJ Williams backing him up.  Fletcher is our all-time sack leader with 97 ½.  Why is he not in our Ring of Fame?  DJ gets a lot of grief around MHR, but I still see him as a very talented player, DUI’s aside.  He’s played multiple positions and played them well.

CB

Louis Wright and Billy Thompson are the clear starters.  Darrent Williams and Mike Harden back up these Ring of Fame corners.  Wright was named to the 1970’s All-Decade team.  That is pretty darn impressive.  Of the 4 CB’s named to the All-Decade Team, he is the only one not in the Hall of Fame.  Can you say Denver Bias???  Thompson has 40 career interceptions.  Darrent's career and life were obviously ended way too early.  RIP Darrent.

S

Is there any doubt Dennis Smith and Steve Atwater are the starters?  Tyrone Braxton and Steve Foley back up some of the best safeties this game has ever seen.  Smith and Atwater round out the DB foursome who are all represented in the Ring of fame.  The Smiling Assasin was named to the 1990’s All-Decade Team and Christian Okoye is still recovering from that hit he delivered 20 years ago.  Can it be 20 years ago already?

PK

Jason Elam.  No explanation needed.

P

Luke Prestridge.  Who is this guy?  I don’t know but he made the All Pro first team in 1982.  That easily gives him the advantage over the other 4 punters we drafted - Nick Harris, Brian Gragert, Larry Swider and Wilbur Summers.

Returner

Rick Upchurch is the guy here.  The second Bronco on the 1970’s All-Decade Team was also on the 1980’s All-Decade Team.  Good enough for a spot in Canton?  Nope, but he did make my team…:-)

Long Snapper

Long snapper?  Really?  Sure why not.  My favorite long snapper is Mike Leach, but he was an undrafted player.  I have to go with Jeff Robinson because he was the first guy I came across who was a long snapper and drafted by us.

Coaching Staff

Head Coach – Mike Shanahan

Offensive Coordinator – Gary Kubiak

Defensive Coordinator – Joe Collier

 

Here is a recap.

Pos.

Starter

2nd String

3rd String

QB

John Elway

Jay Cutler

Tim Tebow

RB

Terrell Davis

Floyd Little

Clinton Portis

FB

Peyton Hillis

Mike Anderson

 

WR

Vance Johnson

Steve Watson

Eddie Royal

WR

Brandon Marshall

Mark Jackson

 

TE

Shannon Sharpe

Riley Odoms

 

RT

Ryan Harris

Ken Lanier

 

RG

Dan Neil

Cooper Carlisle

 

C

Tom Nalen

Ben Hamilton

 

LG

Doug Widell

Keith Bishop

 

LT

Ryan Clady

Claude Minor

 

 

 

 

 

RDE

Lyle Alzado

Rulon Jones

 

NT

Rubin Carter

Keith Traylor

 

LDE

Trevor Pryce

Paul Smith

Barney Chavous

ROLB

Tom Jackson

Elvis Dumervil

 

RILB

Randy Gradishar

John Mobley

Michael Brooks

LILB

Karl Mecklenburg

Al Wilson

 

LOLB

Simon Fletcher

DJ Williams

 

CB

Louis Wright

Darrent Williams

 

CB

Billy Thompson

Mike Harden

 

SS

Dennis Smith

Tyrone Braxton

 

FS

Steve Atwater

Steve Foley

 

 

 

 

 

LS

Jeff Robinson

 

 

P

Luke Prestridge

 

 

PK

Jason Elam

 

 

KR

Rick Upchurch

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks for reading.

This is a Fan-Created Comment on MileHighReport.com. The opinion here is not necessarily shared by the editorial staff of MHR

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