I been looking at a lot of the chatter both here and elsewhere early on in this off season and there’s no doubt that there are many different opinions about what needs to be done for this team to take the next step. Right now this is a good team, and the deference between a good team and elite team can often only be one or two pieces. As much as I love mock drafts, this early on they’re really just an expression of what you feel the team’s needs are. Let’s be honest, how many people even had Von Miller on their radar this time last year. So instead of going through all that I’m going to try to take a position by position look at the players we already have to examine where our needs are.
Offense – There should be a lot of optimism about this group forward whether you like Tebow or not. This is a pretty young group that will only get better with time. Six of the most important pieces are rookies or second year guys with a good mix of players just entering their prime. The "old" guy of the group is the 29 year old Chris Kuper.
QB – Tebow is our only real quarterback signed past this year. So no matter what you think this is an area of need. What’s needed is to first go look for a prototypical veteran who can help teach Tebow the ins and out of the NFL game. Then let’s go find a young guy with a similar skill set . There are tons of good primarily running quarterbacks out there because they don’t play the NFL style, there has to be one sitting on the couch waiting for a phone call.
HB – When our offensive line is clicking any solid back can have a huge day. I’m all for picking up another horse for the stable but I don’t think we should reach just because we think we have to get a stud to be a run first team. If value falls to us, then let’s pull the trigger, if not I wouldn’t be overly concerned. We should give Moreno one more year to hit his stride, even if his role is only that of a third down back then that’s still splitting the load and better than wasting a draft pick.
FB – If we’re going to run the ball so much then lets go get a good dual threat fullback. This is a position that should probably be considered more important to us than any other team. No more converted linebackers or tight ends lining up back there please. A good fullback is like a twelve player on the field, an extra receiver and an extra lineman.
TE – Should be considered one of our biggest needs. We need someone who can be a match up nightmare in the middle. The new trend is having two dominant pass catching tight ends, we don’t even have one. Look at what New England and Carolina has done. I think the broncos have to strongly consider taking Dwayne Allen in the late first round. The 6’4" 255lb tight end from Clemson is an elite prospect that could be a safety net for Tebow while being a force in the running game.
O Line – We potentially have the pieces of an elite O line for the next 5 or 6 years. Depth can never hurt but were better off finding veterans who can fill in if there’s an injury rather than drafting someone who would need to be developed.
WR – Contrary to many people’s opinions, I don’t see major need here. Decker and Thomas have both dominated games at times and are only second year players. They’re on their way to developing into very good players. Royal is versatile and find a way to make a contribution. We’re not going to be doing that many five wide sets. If there was a big physical guy that could be developed, so be it, otherwise let’s give this group time to mature and develop chemistry.
Defense – This group was dominant at time and then suspect at others. There are a lot of good young pieces but a few more are needed if the goal is to be an elite defense.
DE – Are starters are set for the next half decade. Dumervil is an animal and will only be better next season when he’s healthy. Ayers has proven to be a reliable run stuffer and is slowly but surely developing some pass rush.
DT – The quality of play we got out of our DTs surprised everyone this season. We need to make an effort to bring back what we already got and add even more offseason. With Miller and Dumervil coming off the edges, if an elite presence can be added up the middle to blow up the pocket, where are opposing quarterbacks going to go.
OLB – Another area where our starters are set for the foreseeable future. Miller and Williams are both extremely talented players. We should also try to resign the depth we already have.
MLB – This may be our biggest need, almost every great defense has an elite linebacker up the middle to clean up and rack up the tackles. Joe Mays is ok but just not good enough if we’re trying to build an elite defense. If the value is on the outside and we have to slide DJ Williams here, then that’s just as good. If we were to go a combination of DT and MLB with our top two picks it would go really far in enhancing this defense.
CB – This is the one area where I expect to hear the most complaints. I simply don’t see this as a major need yet. Champ was still champ and he has at least another couple years of elite play as a corner. I know Goodman has lost a step and is definitely on his way out, but I think his replacement is on the roster. Chris Harris was just incredible this season and let’s please not forget about Syd'Quan Thompson who missed this season with an injury. The only way I could see going cornerback early is if the plan is to move Champ to safety like he’s eluded he’s wanted to do in the past. If we can lure one of the top free agents I wouldn’t hate it.
S – People should relax here, we just drafted two guys here last year. Quinton Carter played well, but rookies get victimized by elite QB in the NFL, it’s going to happen. Don’t jump to give up on Rahim Moore either, we drafted him in the second round because we liked his talent. He didn’t lose it in a year, give him time to adjust to the pro game. That said I don’t want to see the pair as our starting safeties next year either. If Dawkins retires, let’s go out and find a veteran who can lead the group and mentor these kids.
I hope you guys enjoyed reading, let me know what you guys think.