According to longtime draft analyst Tony Pauline, a team currently picking in the teens of the 2017 NFL Draft has guaranteed running back Christian McCaffrey that they would select him if he were available when they selected.
Pauline says this a "hot rumor" among NFL/Draft insiders.
"The story circulating from insiders is that McCaffrey has received a draft guarantee from a team presently selecting in the teens -- the team has guaranteed McCaffrey they will select him if he’s still available when they are called to the podium."
This would be bad news for the Broncos who currently have pick 20 in the draft and have been showing a bunch of interest in McCaffrey throughout the process.
The teams in the teens that could potentially be in play for McCaffrey are the New Orleans Saints at 11, the Philadelphia Eagles at 14, the Indianapolis Colts at 15, the Washington Redskins at 17, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at 19. So the Broncos would have some major competition for McCaffrey if these rumors are indeed true.
As we know, McCaffrey was in for a visit last week with the Broncos. It's unclear was conversations were had during this meeting, but it's possible McCaffrey told the Broncos which team made this declaration to him so that they can start working the phones to make sure they select the explosive playmaking running back/receiver.
Usually player visits are about homework (red flags, football IQ). Not C. McCaffrey's, his Broncos visit is about validating if they move up— Tyler Polumbus (@Tyler_Polumbus) April 12, 2017
An interesting nugget that came out the day of this meeting was from 104.3 THE Fan's Tyler Polumbus. He tweeted out that this visit with the Broncos was validating their reasoning to move up for McCaffrey or not. Letting the Broncos know which teams are showing the most interest in him and what team said they would draft him would certainly help the Broncos make their decision on him right then and there. The relationship between the prospect and Elway would also help in this situation.
So it will be interesting how this all plays out. We are under two weeks away from the 2017 NFL Draft and this is when false rumors and legit rumors begin to leak out and it's hard to tell the difference between the two. With that said, it's beginning to look very unlikely that Christian McCaffrey will fall into the Broncos laps at pick 20 and that they would need to trade for him if they want him.