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Broncos at the Bye: Should Denver Tank for Tua?

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No, but seriously. Would you like for the Denver Broncos tank for him?

With the Denver Broncos at 3-6 and looking at something like a 1.3% chance at the postseason, is it time to drive the train off the rails? I decided the bye was the perfect time to ask everyone at Mile High Report’s thoughts on the matter.

Should the Broncos tank?

Taylor Kothe: That’s the question, now, isn’t it? The lure of a top 5 pick, maybe a top QB... but at what cost? To tank would fly in the face of the tough, competitive culture that Vic Fangio is building. It would be destructive, and while it’s a seductive thought for us fans, do not expect the team to entertain it.

Kyle Berry: No. Never tank, it’s rude to the fans.

Scotty Payne: Getting a third win kinda ruined the tank talk. Miami and Cincinnati will both select quarterbacks at 1 and 2 leaving the Broncos likely without a chance to select a high end prospect. Now with that said, a lot can and will change between now and April so all is not lost, but the Broncos are likely looking at a top 10 pick now

Laurie Volkmann: Never. Tanking is for losers. If, however, the current QB doesn’t just light it up over the next two games, then there’s nothing wrong with trying everything to win...while playing the rookie.

Joe Mahoney: I selfishly want us to go 5-2 the rest of the way to avoid the first back-to-back-to-back losing seasons from the Broncos in my lifetime. I realize this may keep the franchise in the cycle of suck without a “franchise” QB, but there is no guarantee that tanking to finish 3-13 would get us a franchise QB - mainly because so few franchise QB’s have been drafted in the last decade.

Joe Rowles: If the Broncos had a legitimate shot at the first overall pick and Tua Tagovailoa, I’d be driving the Tank-wagon. They don’t. According to Football Outsiders’ Playoff Odds Report which ran a simulation of the NFL season 30,000 times, the Broncos have a better shot at the postseason than the top pick in the draft. In fact, they have just an 18.5% chance at a top five selection.

The NFL isn’t the NBA where things are so heavily weighed towards the top one or two picks, you don’t have to look any further than 2018 to see how some of the best players look like they came outside the top ten altogether.

Combine that with the fact that the Broncos are a young team with a first year staff looking to build a winning culture, and the best road forward is to compete. If that means Lock gets time because he’s ready to prove he’s the answer at quarterback, sure, but intentionally losing is better left to the Bungles of the world.

Okay, but seriously where do the Broncos go from here?

Taylor: I think they keep fighting to win games. They give Brandon Allen at least 2 more games to audition for a long term role with the team, and then use the final 4 or 5 games to put Drew Lock through his paces. And I think the result is 1 or 2 more wins along the way, and the Broncos wind up picking in the 6 to 10 range.At that point, Elway has built up the draft capital (three 2020 3rd rounders + future picks) to jump up and take a top QB if that ends up being the best course. Otherwise, with 5 picks in the top 100, the Broncos will be primed to take some offensive linemen and, hopefully, focus a lot of the draft on the team’s defensive future after back to back offense-focused drafts.

Scotty: Keep developing your young talent, find a quarterback and left tackle, and keep finding players who fit Fangio’s scheme/style.In the end, all that matters is the quarterback. Is it Lock? Allen? A prospect? A free agent like Teddy Bridgewater? Someone else?? Need to find the answer there

Joe M: We gotta hope that either Allen is the next Tom Brady or that Lock lights it up in his three game trial so that we can use our 2020 picks to fix the other holes we will have after this season.

Use whatever means we need to get Mike Munchak’s preferred LT in the 2020 draft and either trade Garett Bolles or find a way to convert him to a guard (even though his limited skill-set would not fit iOL few well). We have to invest heavily in the offensive line. Getting Dalton Risner in the 2nd in 2019 was a start, but Leary is not coming back in 2020 (nor should he given his current level of play) and there is no guarantee that Ja’Wuan James will be able to stay on in the field in 2020. Elijah Wilkinson might be an upgrade over Ronald Leary at guard, but we need to start taking two offensive lineman in every draft to restock the cupboard.

Ian St. Clair: As Adam Malnati and I talked about on the state of the Broncos podcast (Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify), figuring out what Denver has in Lock in the last seven games is the most crucial (unless Allen balls out). Get him activated and practicing the next two weeks so he he’s ready to start come the home against the Los Angeles Chargers. As others have noted, that’s how you know what to do come free agency and the NFL Draft, but the only way to know is to play him. The Broncos defense will only get better, especially when you consider the return of Bradley Chubb and Bryce Callahan, plus additions in the offseason that fit Fangio’s system. The defense has the potential to be really, really good in 2020. That highlights the need to find out what Denver has in Lock because if they get the quarterback figured out, this is a legitimate playoff contender next season.

Poll

Should the Broncos tank?

This poll is closed

  • 14%
    Yes, get a franchise QB!
    (180 votes)
  • 85%
    No way, 10-6 ‘til we ain’t.
    (1061 votes)
1241 votes total Vote Now