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Broncos searching for draft gems at CSU-Pueblo Pro Day

Often overlooked due to playing at a lower level of competition, two products from CSU-Pueblo may be on the Broncos NFL Draft radar.

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos scouting staff continued their trek of Pro Day events earlier this week with a keen eye geared towards local talent.

Several representatives were in attendance for Colorado State University-Pueblo’s Pro Day, where one player in particular opened the eyes of scouts and stole the show.

Outside of Pueblo, Kieran Duncan isn’t a household name, but his aspirations of becoming selected in April’s NFL Draft received a significant boost after Monday’s workouts — where he was clocked as low as 4.25 seconds in the 40 yard dash, an official time from a Broncos scout on hand for the days’ events.

At 5’11 and 170 pounds, teams may have concerns about the ThunderWolves’ wide receiver. but with speed like that, franchises across the league will certainly give him a closer look in the weeks leading up to April’s draft festivities.

On the surface, Duncan is a versatile player who contributed in a myriad of roles for the his collegiate squad and seemed to make the most of his opportunities. While Duncan’s statistical output wasn’t prolific with the ThunderWolves, it was good enough to be CSU-Pueblo's leading receiver the past two seasons.

However, it is worth mentioning that their offense is geared around the rushing prowess of brotherly duo Cameron and Bernard McDondle, who combined for almost 4,000 total rushing yards and 41 touchdowns in 2015.

As a senior, Duncan amassed 36 receptions for 622 yards and six touchdowns and ended the season with 1,527 all-purpose yards. The year prior, he tallied 45 receptions for 712 yards and three scores. His 17.3 and15.8 yard per catch averages from both seasons were among the best in Division II football — numbers that show his ability to stretch the field and make plays in space after the catch.

On top of that, he certainly offers value as a specialist on both kick and punt returns.  Duncan posted a 10.4 yard average on punt returns as a senior and an eye-popping 30.1 yard average on kickoffs, including a 98 yard touchdown against West Texas A&M. 

While it’s unlikely that Duncan will garner early-round consideration in the NFL Draft, Monday’s performance may have catapulted him from a small school unknown, to a potential late-round sleeper.  At the very least, it is probably he will have the opportunity to continue his football career as an undrafted college free agent.

Another prospect from the ThunderWolves who is also considered an ultimate draft sleeper is aforementioned running back and Harlan Hill Trophy finalist Cameron McDondle.

The All-American running back posted an uncanny 2,235 yards rushing, 7.4 yard per carry average and 24 touchdowns last season. Over the course of his career, McDondle rushed for 5,951 yards, 56 touchdowns for an astounding 6.6 yard per carry average. Despite playing against Division II competition, numbers like that are hard to ignore. 

In front of scouts, he registered a 4.5 second 40 yard dash and measured in at 5'7 and 210 pounds.  Though his size may be a reason he is overlooked during the draft, McDondle believes his heart and drive make up for it and is determined to succeed at the next level.

When it is all said and done, don’t be surprised if these two local prospects get an opportunity to continue their football careers with the Denver Broncos as a priority college free agents. Maybe, just maybe, one of them will end up being one of John Elway's famous undrafted collegiate gem finds.