1. 2014 NFL Draft Rumors
Several names are cropping up when it comes to the Denver Broncos draft strategy. The biggest two are names that would require John Elway to wheel and deal to move up in the first round. The report came from Cecil Lammey, and both guys are defensive stalwarts.
STRENGTHS: Mosley does a nice job using his length and lower body fluidity to keep himself clean through a crowd and finishes at the ball, wrapping and driving through his target. He is very smart and keeps his eyes on the ball to track and attack and rarely makes mental mistakes, which is a result of his high football IQ and preparation skills.
WEAKNESSES: Isn't always fundamentally consistent as a tackler, at times opting to throw himself at his target or drop his head on contact. Missed time in 2011 with a dislocated elbow.
COMPARES TO: Lavonte David, LB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Like David, Mosley's combination of toughness, elite instincts and superb athleticism offer the versatility of lining up inside or out, and have enabled him to be one of the nation's top all-around linebackers.
STRENGTHS: Prototype body type with good anticipation and explosive closing speed. Reliable open-field tackler and intimidating presence. Lowers his shoulder on impact to create collisions in run support and when protecting the middle of the field in coverage. Good vision and spatial awareness to slip amongst the mass of humanity near the line of scrimmage to locate the ball. Shows no desire for self-preservation when taking on blockers, dropping to take them out at the knees and often is able to take out the ballcarrier. Very good ball skills. Can extend and pluck outside of his frame and shows excellent awareness to get his feet inbounds.
WEAKNESSES: Almost too physical in an era in which heavy hitters often draw penalty flags. Drops his shoulder into defenders but some of his hits could be interpreted as leading with the crown of his helmet. Wasn't asked to cover slot receivers in Louisville's scheme. A bit stiff when changing direction, allowing some separation by receivers, especially on double-moves.
COMPARES TO: Antrel Rolle, Giants - Pryor is blessed with an exciting combination of size, explosiveness and ball skills to quickly become one of the most respected defensive backs in the league early in his career.
Another story from Predominantly Orange, talks about a guy the Broncos are interested in that has a late round grade. Andrew Mason's tweet about Jeff Janis opened this up for discussion. He looks like a very interesting prospect from a smaller program - a Jerry Rice type perhaps?
2. The 2014 NFL Combine
Day 2 of the NFL Combine was mostly uneventful. It does appear as though there are some teams more than willing to trade back from the top end of the NFL Draft, which means John Elway could have some potential partners to move up to snag one of the two prospects above.
One sad part yesterday, was how Indianapolis Colts General Manager Ryan Grigson had to defense his wasting of a first round pick on Trent Richardson. That alone, if you ask me, is worth a serious look at his job performance if I were the owner - then again, the owner is a ding bat, so we'll call it par for the course.
3. Cleveland Just Can't Help Itself
After all of the drama creating from looking for a new coach, the Cleveland Browns go and give their brand new coach a black eye as news broke of them trying to trade - yes trade - for Jim Harbaugh of the San Francisco 49ers. If I were Mike Pettine, I'd already be thinking about my next career move in 2015.
I would say the Browns are officially the most dysfunctional franchise in the NFL, but this reportedly happened before the owner, Jimmy Haslam, fired the front office. Perhaps Haslam has righted the sinking ship just in time.
4. Injury Recovery Updates
Elway and company are definitely looking forward to removing all of the guys from IR and putting their names back on the active roster board.
5. What's in a contract?
It certainly appears as though the Denver Broncos will be asking Champ Bailey for a pay cut. It makes sense considering how tough of a season he had in 2013 and with 2014 likely to be his final year as a professional football player.
As for many of the other free agents hitting the market, Elway is giving the impression he will let them all hit the market and see where the chips fall. It also appears as though it is part of a strategy to ensure the Broncos retain Demaryius Thomas, Julius Thomas and Wes Welker next season when their contracts come due.
6. Elway from the Combine
DenverBroncos.com is the best source for live NFL Combine coverage. John Elway gave a nice interview on the combine yesterday. I was glad to hear him apologize to Broncos fans yet again for how the 2013 Season ended. As bad as it hurts, its good to know it hurts him worse with how it ended. Love the straight up no nonsense approach from Elway - yet another reason he'll remain my favorite player of all time. Go Broncos!