This draft is so deep that trading out of 31 to add at least one more pick is very enticing. The most difficult part of this exercise for me was I wanted everyone in every round; there appear on paper to be so many quality guys. There is too much at play to mock who trades picks and for what so for this mock I have Denver sticking at 31. Did I say this class is deep? Seems like Denver, even on a team that is as strong as it is, could locate 4 probable starters or at least 4 siginificant contributors in this draft.
We see what they addressed in free agency so the draft may swing a little different than most assume. Also should be noted that the players from defense on IR at the end of last season could almost be a top ten defense by themselves. Denver lost arguably more talent on one side of the ball than any team in the league last year and yet still managed a conference championship. Probably just my "Patriots-fatgiue" kicking in but I was so sick of hearing what a great job NE did last year to reach the AFC title game with "so many losses". Anyway, rant over, but Denver even without the 3 defensive FA signings was going to field a much better defense statisticaly in 2014.
There are still holes to fill at CB and inside Linebacker on D; seems likely with who remains among unsigned FAs that Denver will approach these positions via the draft. I agree with many posters who have stated that OL is the single greatest need and since no O linemen have been added via FA we should not be surprised to see multiple picks used across the offensive line. WR seems like a need as well and with Montee Ball as the sole "proven" RB there should be some attention paid to that position as well. I am for Moreno being resigned.
If Denver is fortunate and teams ahead of them draft like the Raiders (obligatory Oakland cut, as a fan since '78 I can't help it), we should see a great deal of talent available when Denver makes its selections; which I have optimistically tabbed as the following:
1. Louis Nix DT ND. I typed this guy in here and I myself am not in love with the pick. I think the best player at 31 is someone in the 2nd round but I do not have the clairvoyance to contrive a trading partner for Denver to move back. This guy is solid and in my estimation well coached at the position. We don't know how Vickerson will respond to rehab; Wolfe is a concern healthwise as well and didn't Knighton make some noise about a new contract?
2. Donte Moncrief WR Ole Miss. Sneaky quiet productive guy with the size and speed to make the most ardent Decker supporters cheer up. I was tempted to slot Troy Niklas here and go with Martavus Bryant the Clemson WR in the 3rd, but Denver needs a corner added to their roster. Could you imagine a 6'7" 270lb tight end on the field with Thomas and Thomas? Intriguing to say the least.
3. Stanley Jean-Baptiste CB Nebraska. Large enough to counter-balance the offensive slant of the current NFL rule book.
4. Andrew Jackson MLB WKU. Like Q. Smith at WKU, when I saw their games Andrew Jackson was the best player on the field. Big as Brandon Spikes but with the speed to play on 3rd down.
5. Storm Johnson RB UCF. Seems to get little to no pub nationally but has a nice size/speed combo (not a Hillman fan at this point, need another back)
6. Russell Bodine T UNC. RT swing to LT. Depending on what happens for the remainder of free agency and in the first 5 rounds, Denver must add quality and depth to the offensive line. This guy seems ready to come in at RT opening day and allow flexibility should it be needed.
7. Gabe Ikard T Oklahoma This guy could start at G or C and play as the swing for all 3 interior line positions. Beadles and Kuper are gone and although Kuper had not played for multiple seasons the potential lost there needs replacing. This guy moved well at the combine from the limited bit I watched and seems capable of being at least a backup/rotational guy at RG, C and LG. Very valuable commodity for a team built now to protect an immobile quarterback. That center up the gut pressure was what slowed Denver last year during games in which they were slowed.
This is all a guess at best and of course as a fan overly optimistic. But I think that most Denver fans would be thrilled with this haul. Go ahead and mock the mock.