This time of year, there are always hot takes and prognostications being thrown about, because the draft is such a volatile and unpredictable beast. Even the best in the business are regularly wrong in their predictions.
Draft Day. The best day. ... Welcome to the most unpredictable and weirdest draft that I can remember. No one has any idea and it's awesome— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 27, 2017
As a result, the only thing that is certain, is that no one knows what to expect. Whether it is last minute free falls like we saw with Laremy Tunsil last year, or teams moving around to get their guy (last year saw 7 trades in the first round), the first round always brings unexpected surprises.
So, if there is ever a time for bold predictions, the first round of the draft is it; because who knows, one might actually happen. Last year, I didn’t fare so well in my bold predictions, but this year is the year, I can feel it!
Here are my three bold predictions for the Denver Broncos in the draft tonight, along with an argument for each one. I can’t promise they’ll be good arguments, or that I would necessarily advocate for these courses of action; but there will be arguments, nonetheless.
1. Denver will leave the first two rounds without an offensive lineman
Argument: this may seem like heresy to those that saw how mightily the offensive line struggled last year. However, if Denver really is as high on a healthy Ty Sambrailo as John Elway seemed to indicate in his press conference, then they might attempt to just gain talent for the first two rounds, and grab a developmental prospect in the 3rd or 4th round. They have already (theoretically) shored up the LG and RT position in free agency and have enough depth at guard on the roster to compete for RG. This only leaves LT, and if Ty Sambrailo is actually healthy and has bulked up this off season, like some reports indicate, Denver may feel good enough to not have to reach in the first for a tackle.
It's day one. Can't overreact, but I saw a few things I liked during #Broncos veteran mini-camp. Sambrailo looks to have a bigger upper body— Jake Marsing (@JakeDMarsing) April 25, 2017
Elway says he felt Sambrailo was going somewhere at LT before he got hurt two years ago.— Andrew Mason (@MaseDenver) April 24, 2017
2. Denver won’t pick in the first round at all
Argument: This one is probably the least bold of the three, but with all the talk swirling around about teams possibly moving back up into the first for QBs, or wanting to jump Denver for a tackle, I could see Elway being content to keep moving back and stockpiling picks for a loaded second day.
This #NFLDraft, with the initial talent depth and the questions at the top of the board, may have the best talent in the 2nd rd of any draft— Jeff Feyerer (@jfey5) April 26, 2017
3. Denver is going to make a splash trade up involving a player and some picks
Argument: The obvious target here would be Christian McCaffrey who some (myself included) argue is a generationally special player who will be a star in this league. That’s exactly what Denver is looking for currently on the offensive side of the ball and I think to get it done, Denver would be more apt to trade a player than a haul of picks. Secondarily, even if McCaffrey goes too early or is too expensive, I just feel like Elway has something up his sleeve. They’ve played this off season pretty low-key so far and need some type of spark or juice coming off of a disappointing season. Don’t put it past the Duke to make a big time move to bring some needed punch to the roster.
Sound off on your bold predictions in the comments below!