Good morning, Broncos Country!
We’re zeroing in on Draft Day, and that means the speculations and rumors are heating up -but it’s still too early to take any of them very seriously.
Will the Broncos’ top quarterback choice be available at No. 5?
Will the Jets take Baker Mayfield ? Or are they still jonesing for Josh Allen?
Do the Bills trade up to grab one of the Top Four QBs projected in this Draft?
Do the Broncos try an expensive trade-up (likely the Giants) to ensure their QB-of-choice is still available?
Or should the Broncos trade back?
Will the Browns “Brown?”
So many rumors, so little time. But why should that stop us? We could talk about the preseason schedule unveiled Wednesday...but why? It’s four weeks of meaningless opponents as the primary goal of the games will have virtually nothing to do with the other team.
So let’s speculate!
In recent days, there’s been chatter that the Jets are now interested in taking quarterback Baker Mayfield with their No. 3 pick (traded with the Colts last month).
Assuming the Browns take Sam Darnold or Josh Allen with their No. 1 overall pick, there’s an outside chance the quarterback the Broncos may be considering will be off their board by No. 5.
What’s John Elway’s best play at that point?
Option 1 - Stay at 5 and pick...
Quenton Nelson? No.
I know, I know. He’s considered one of the best overall athletes in the draft and one of the best offensive linemen to come around in a long time.
But ... HE. IS. A. GUARD.
And you don’t spend your fifth pick overall on a guard. Even a really, really good one.
As much as the Broncos could still shore up their O-line, as much as Nelson is talented and deserves a first-round grab, and as much as OL talent is crucial for a quarterback’s success, that is not the best move for Denver at No. 5.
The Broncos are in a unique position to be picking this high in the draft (“unique” being my euphemism for “because they had a sh**** season”) - and their draft capital need not be wasted on a position that will bring average overall value to the team.
While Nelson would certainly improve the Broncos’ offensive line, that line is already better than last season thanks to free agency and there are other offensive linemen to be had in the second and third rounds. Those rounds are where the Broncos should be finding their OL help.
Given that, it would be far more beneficial to the team’s future if Elway goes with a high-impact player. A game-changer like Saquon Barkley, or top defenders like pass rusher Bradley Chubb or linebacker Roquan Smith would be deserving of that fifth pick - and all three could bring electricity to an area of the Broncos game that could definitely use a spark.
This might be the most uncertain top 5 of an NFL Draft in recent memory.— Scotty Payne (@Skotty_Payne) April 12, 2018
The "locks" for each pick change by the week haha.
Option 2 - Trade back...
There were whispers weeks ago about the Broncos trading back with the Bills for a couple of Buffalo’s 14 picks in the first round (OK, two) - which is a tantalizing offer.
Although I’m tempted to lean toward the “game-changer” option, probably the smarter play is trading the No. 5 pick for Buffalo’s two later first-round picks, therefore doubling Denver’s draft capital in the most impactful round of the draft.
Here the Broncos could likely snag Isaiah Wynn or Will Hernandez and get that O-line help they need or go with defense and take linebacker Tremaine Edmunds while picking up a player like Mike McGlinchey.
Isaiah Wynn is a first-round prospect. pic.twitter.com/eqCNxUENoI— J.R. (@JReidDraftScout) January 30, 2018
Option 3 - Trade up to get...
If the Broncos really want Baker Mayfield - or possibly even Josh Rosen - there’s a chance they’ll need to make a big move on Draft Day to leapfrog the Jets and get their guy.
For a franchise-QB-in-the-making, it’s worth it. As Andrew Mason noted, “although there is a fixation on the early-round busts at the position, your chances of finding a long-term starter are by far at their best in the first five picks.”
This year’s crop of first-round quarterbacks is an unprecedented “four” - so it is certainly the Broncos best chance for a long-term solution at quarterback. Depending on the asking price, this could very well be more like “Option 1.”
The best part about March and April is that the dynamic is always changing with rumors, visits, etc. The landscape we discuss changes constantly! Or as a Browns general manager once said ... pic.twitter.com/4WSZstgNbl— Andrew Mason (@MaseDenver) April 9, 2018
Horse Tracks - docllv’s pick of the day
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