FanPost

Foundation is Laid: Elway's Dream Team

Elsa

Editor's note: Nice post Kush, and welcome to the FanPosts at MHR! To everyone, we hope to feature a lot of quality fanposts like this throughout the summer and beyond. Go Broncos, and Go Broncos Country! - Monty

Hello fellow Bronco fans! I have been reading blogs for awhile now, but somehow I came across this website last. I love all the insight Broncos fans have about our great team! This being my first post, I can't promise gold, but what I will provide is a very optimistic view on what I think Elway has done in his short tenure. I will be giving a break down of keys players at every position, offense and defense. I won't get too much into depth guys, just present day starters, and guys who I think will have an impact in the coming years. Here goes nothing.

OFFENSE

Quarterback

  1. Peyton Manning : Not much to be said here except for the fact that this is the first pillar put in place by Elway. You can only go as far as your QB will take you, and in Elway's first offseason he went after the best of the best. Elway wants to make this guy the greatest that ever lived, and frankly, he has done enough yet up until this year. Elway is not only thinking about one ring, he wants three, there is so much speculation about Manning retiring after every season, and frankly I believe Manning will play out his contract. My last point about Manning coming to the Broncos is that Elway not only brought this guy in to make an immediate impact, but also an impact that will last far longer than Manning's playing days. Manning has brought more to this team than just his incredible play on the field, he has also brought this attitude and mentality that reaches the young guys who in turn can keep passing it on. Manning brought a tradition, a new Bronco way.
  2. Brock Osweiler: This might be the worst move made in Elway's tenure. As I mentioned before, I can see Manning playing out his contract. This means Osweiler will have gone his whole rookie contract without seeing the field once. It may have been a bit too early to take Manning's predecessor in 2011. There is still some value in this kid, even if he does not ever see the field as a Bronco. Elway could easily get Osweiler off this next offseason. He has been under Manning's tutelage, he is still pretty young considering he came out a bit early, and some team will be willing to put a price on this kid if Elway is willing. With that being said, next year's offseason should have a different feel from the others. Elway has all the upcoming FAs he needs in house next year, so addressing needs next season will be as easy as signing his own guys. (Stick with me here). Going into a 2015 draft with what should be at least 11 picks, why not grab another one in dealing Osweiler. That could be 12 or 13 picks for a stacked team with very few needs (hopefully)! Most of Bronco nation wanted a trade up this year, it didnt happen. Next year with a move like this, Denver will undoubtedly move up and grab a stud next year. Yes, I have some pretty forward thinking, but my 1st round pick for next years draft would be a steal. (I'll get to that later.)

Running Back

  1. Monte Ball: This guy is not getting enough love IMO. He is hard worker who lives in the film room. I believe this guy thinks he has been overlooked via his twitter account. A blue collar back who will do anything to get better, just what Manning loves. This guy is going to erupt next year and turn into a Bronco favorite. Monte Ball is going to out live the Manning era and be the back we can lean on since TD. Also, a little fantasy perspective, this guy is going to be a steal at your RB2.
  2. CJ Anderson: I think Elway has more fun finding UDFA than he does drafting. Anderson will provide a great one-two punch next year, and if Ball ever gets injured, this man provides great depth. Also, this guy has more wiggle and speed than most would expect. Elway, I applaud you for this kid. After this year, we may have two starters at RB.

Wide Receivers

  1. Demaryius Thomas: This guy will explode this year. The Emmanuel Sanders signing is going to be felt across the board this year for our receivers. Decker was good but he wasn't a burner meaning most defenses could roll their coverages to DT's side. Not anymore, with Sanders speed, Thomas should see more one-on-one's than ever this year, and DT will exploit every last one of them. I saw some comments about not retaining DT next year. I may not know your names but you are insane. Elway will not let this Top 3 WR go after this year. After Manning leaves, having DT for the long haul would be very comforting. DT? Hit the market? I am still trying to contemplate that one...
  2. Emmanuel Sanders: This guy has to be the most overlooked signing of the offseason. He is going to make our whole receiving corps better just with his presence alone. He brings far more scheme versatility than Decker could ever dream of, far more speed, and his YAC ability makes Decker look like a "guy." Sanders was not only brought in for immediate impact, but future impact as well. The true "Four Horseman," will be assembled once Sanders is moved into the slot in 2015.
  3. Wes Welker: I don't think his numbers will be as nice as they were last year, but that is okay. With Latimer, you are going to see Welker subbing a bit more most likely. His numbers may not be as flashy, but I just see a lot of impact plays being made by Welker this year that transcend numbers. He will assuredly not be a Bronco in 2015.
  4. Cody Latimer: I fell in love with this guy during the draft process. When this guy was drafted, I erupted with joy in my living room. I saw a lot of hate with this pick though. This guy was brought in for future impact, and when I mean impact, I mean IMPACT. This guy is a pro-bowler waiting to happen, and a man that will out live the Manning era with ease. The last piece of the true "Four Horseman."

Tight End

  1. Julius Thomas : Once again, this Sanders signing is being overlooked. The chemistry between PFM and Thomas will be at an all time by the start of the season. With Sanders being able to blow the top off of coverages, the middle of the field will be JT's playground. This guy will be getting paid without a doubt this offseason. You don't let 4th round gems go, and I am sure Elway understands this.
  2. Virgil Green: This man has caught the short end of the stick in an overcrowded tight end group, which I believe will see a cut this summer. This guy is a great blocker, and a more than adequate pass catcher. It is just a shame he may not be a Bronco after this season and be part of our dynasty. I don't think he will get resigned but some team will be receiving a gift.

Tackle

  1. Ryan Clady: Truly one of the best LTs in the game. His ability to go one-on-one with defense's best pass rushers just frees up the whole O-line to excel. It is a shame he had to get hurt next year, but thank God Elway knows what a premier LT in this game means. This guy is an anchor for years to come.
  2. Chris Clark: This guy did a more than serviceable job filling in for Clady last year, but the move to RT may not be in his favor. He doesn't have the power required to play the position, he will get his shot but IMO he becomes nothing more than great depth once again.
  3. Michael Schofield: Clark may be the starter at RT heading into camp, but this guy is going to really push him for the spot. He has great versatility and he is from Tackle U, if Lewan was not there he could have easily been the LT at Michigan, by the time it is all said and done this guy will not only get the nod at RT in the present, as well as the future. Another great pick by Elway, giving the Broncos great cap flexibility in the future.

Guard

  1. Orlando Franklin: If this guy works out next to Clady, our O-line is not only great, it has to be the most imposing in the NFL. This guy was a road-grader at Miami, which makes me think he can be one in the NFL. The guy moves tremendously well for his size and these holes for Ball are going to be massive. Franklin knows better than anyone that it is his time to shine being his contract year. Moving him from RT to LG also provides even more cap flexibility in this coming offseason since guards are paid considerably less than tackles. I believe this guy does wonders at LG this year and years to come.
  2. Louis Vasquez: How about this beast of a signing by Elway, went from good to great after coming to Denver. Dude is just pure, unadulterated power. Pairing him and Franklin at the G positions make me think of opposing D-lines cowering in fear. Vasquez is a key part in a run for a dynasty.

Center

  1. Manny Ramirez: This will be one of the most interesting competitions in camp. I think Man-Ram gets the nod though. His power in the run game is almost shocking and the chemistry he has built with the O-line can't go overlooked either.
  2. Will Montgomery: Montgomery provides great depth and even more veteran leadership. I know he has had an injury history but Montgomery too also plays with a respectable amount of power. Most importantly, Man-Ram and Montgomery will be great mentors to Paradis which IMO will be the center of the future.

DEFENSE

Defensive Tackle

1. Terrance Knighton: Pot Roast could not have come into a better situation last year, after his performance last year, Denver is stealing. This guy is still pretty young and in his prime. The way he came on last year had me wondering "Why couldn't the Jaguars get something out of this guy?" The combination of nimbleness and power is a sight to see. He is going to see far less double teams this year with Ware and Miller coming off the edge. Good interior D-line play is hard to come by, and I believe this guy should get the nod before Harris does in FA next year, that is just my opinion.

2. Sylvester Williams: Bronco nation get ready to fall in love with this guy. Him and Pot Roast have the potential to be one of the most disruptive interiors in all of football. This guy excelled in college when he saw one-on-ones. With another training camp under his belt, Pot Roast and Sly will be regulars in the backfield this season. A steal for Elway, highway robbery, a key cog for years to come.

Rush DE

1. Demarcus Ware: The steal of the offseason. Elway worked his magic with this guy, he may not figure into the Broncos long term plans, but his presence should also be felt after his departure. To start off, his immediate impact is that he makes the whole defense better, like the entire defense. Lets start in the front seven, him or Miller will see double teams meaning no one else will, and that ripple effect will be noticeable. Sly and Pot Roast will eat, Trevathan and Irving (for the time being) will have more opportunities than ever to make plays, and the secondary is just going to ball out, and that is me trying to be nice. We all know about the effects he should have on Miller, but the forgotten man is Quanterus Smith. Smith couldn't have asked for a better mentor coming in. Smith is literally a spitting image of Ware when he came out of college.

2. Quanterus Smith: This guy got the redshirt last year which is okay. He saw the ins and outs of being an NFL player. This guy led the nation in sacks at an FCS school. He may have disappeared at times but seeing the non-stop motor of Ware should end that. If everything works out well, when we lose Ware, Smith will come in and not miss a beat.

Closed DE

1. Derek Wolfe: I feel bad for this guy after what had happened last year, he had all the looks of a leader and he was just starting to hit his stride once paired with Miller. Wolfe brings so much versatility, has some problem with double teams but something tells me he won't see many of those this year. His motor is undeniable and that goes a long way on this team. Wolfe is going to not just have a bounce back year, but his best year.

2. Malik Jackson: Jackson came in last year and did a tremendous job filling Wolfe's shoes. Another guy with scheme versatility who can play inside and out. I am rooting for Wolfe to get the job, but I would not be surprised if Jackson steals it. Wolfe and Jackson are almost replicas of each other, but Jackson's brute power makes me believe his ceiling is a bit higher than Wolfe's.

Outside Linebacker

Von Miller: Miller is going to have a bounce back year IMO, the presence of Ware not only helps him out in being a pro, but on the field, who are you going to double team? Miller is going to get his fair share of one-on-one's and he will win the majority of them. I also expect to see Miller drop back in coverage a lot more this year. Miller's talents will be on display this year as well as the years to come.

Inside Linebackers

  1. Danny Trevathan: What a steal, Elway hit a home run and saved the 2012 draft with this one. His speed from side line to side line is undeniable. Went from a depth guy to our best player on defense in just one year. Trevathan will be a staple in the linebackers unit for years to come.
  2. Nate Irving: This will undoubtedly be his last year, unless he just balls out of his mind. He probably wont see the field on 3rd down, but I may be the only one to think that he is going to just be a beast in stuffing the run. He showed it last year plenty. Now with a chance to see the field a whole lot more, his run stuffing abilities may take him a long way, maybe as far as a decent contract somewhere else next offseason.
  3. Lamin Barrow: Barrow will be a steal. He is a spitting image of Trevathan coming out of college. I believe Elway is starting a trend with these MLBs. He may not be a full time starter this year but he will see the field on third down and have plenty of on special teams. He ran faster than CJ Mosely, and was really instinctive player at LSU. In 2015, with a year under his belt and few added pounds, Trevathan and Barrow are going to be the models of how to draft at the MLB position in today's NFL.

Defensive Back

  1. Aqib Talib: Talib just brings a much needed nastiness to this Denver defense. If he can remain healthy, Miller and Ware's play will turn this guy into an All-Pro. That 6 year number still scares me, but he should be more motivated that ever coming onto a stacked squad like this.
  2. Chris Harris: Even though he is coming off an ACL injury, Harris is the most under appreciated CB in this league. Who can say they have the ability to play inside and out with tremendous success like Harris? ...no one. Even with that being said, I think a good season wont be enough to want to retain him. Corner backs are getting big bucks nowadays. He is the odd man out next season IMO only because of our depth at the corner position. It will be between Pot Roast and Harris, and I just think DTs are at more of a premium.
  3. Bradley Roby: I love love love this guy. He couldnt have come into a better situation, from what we do defensively to the coaching staff that got DRC on track for once in his career. I wouldnt be surprised if he was a DROY candidate. He is going to see the field a lot IMO once Denver sees what they have. With Talib taking care of team's No.1 options, teams will test Roby. This guy was the best CB coming out in the 2013 draft until he decided to return for his junior year. Fox and JDR will coach this kid up and turn him into a star.
  4. Kayvon Webster: Webster just wants to be the best he can be, which makes me believe he has a chance to be a stud with the ability he already has. This kid just needs to keep his head up and work this whole season because I believe he will probably see the field a smidge less than his rookie year. If Harris and the Broncos cant make a deal, having Webster in our back pocket will make the sting a bit less painful.

Strong Safety

  1. TJ Ward: I thought this kid was perfect for what we needed, then I saw his price tag and my jaw dropped. This guy has pro bowl written all over him every year. The enforcer we have been looking for since Atwater is here. His coverage abilities got some knocks, but with the guys we have on this team, I think he will have a career high in INTs this year.

Free Safety

  1. Rahim Moore: Moore has been an adequate safety in this league for his first 3 years, even though he suffered a terrible injury last year. Moore was starting to hit his stride, but then Ihenacho became a liabilty in coverage hurting Moore. With the insurance Ward provides, he could have his best year yet and be the ballhawk Elway intended on. Barring an absolute stellar year, Moore probably doesn't fit Denver's long term plans.
  2. Quinton Carter: Why would I mention a guy who has not played since 2011? Denver has kept this guy around for a reason, they see something in him. In the playoffs against great competition, he flourished. If Carter comes in to training camp and just shines I could very well see him getting the job. If he does somehow get the job and has a great year, you can bring this guy back for next to nothing unlike Moore. Then again, he could just turn into depth and both, Carter and Moore will see the door next year. This brings me to the 2015 draft. I see far fewer holes going into the draft next year compared to next year. The only difference going into the 2015 draft is that we will have one GLARING hole. Free safety. The Broncos look to have a minimum of 11 picks next year, which IMO will just be too much considering the team will remain stacked IF Elway does the right thing in FA. Now with that being said, Elway hits the biggest home run of his tenure, and unloads a portion of his surplus in picks and trades up. For who? How about the best safety to come out of Alabama, maybe ever. Landin Collins. A little overzealous? Maybe. Elway has all the ammo in next year's draft to turn his team into a dynasty, and quite possibly one of the best teams ever.

My first post has a lot of theoretical things going on in it, but I have to say I think a lot like Elway. I may have no one to fend for me on this but I hoped and prayed we took Latimer, when I thought we were surely going OG. Sure enough, Elway wanted Latimer. I have some forward thinking but I take criticism very well and this being my first post I welcome it. It took 3 years but Elway has finally built his dream team, and this team has some staying power.

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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