If you’re looking for my QB Big Board check it out here.
If you’re looking for my Day 1 Big Board check it out here.
If you’re looking for my Day 2 Big Board check it out here.
What follows is my scheme adjusted Broncos Big Board. These are players that fit what I see the new coaching staff installing for the 2019 Broncos. I made an effort to study players that I thought would be in reach, would make an impact, and also looked like they made sense for Elway and the front office. So if you’re upset that I didn’t look at someone like Bryce Love, it’s because I doubt the Broncos are looking to spend much in the way of draft capital on running backs. Maybe I’m wrong, and what I know of Love is that he’s pretty good, but I thought my time was better spent deep diving elsewhere.
Quick reminder that this list is adjusted for the Broncos current picks. So #1 is my number 1 player that could be available at 125 overall. #10 would be my 10th choice at 125 overall, but if he’s there at 148 he’s ranked ahead of the players I have at that selection.
Make sense? Alright let’s go.
Fourth Round targets
1. Trayvon Mullen - CORNERBACK
Few seem to split the Draft community as much as Mullen. Some think he’s a 4th round talent, others have said there is no way he makes it out of the third. He’s long and flexible, which is intriguing. Also a willing tackler, which should help him fit the Fangio D. He’s had experience playing in a variety of coverages, and while he wasn’t the kind of playmaker you get jazzed for, he could be a solid starter at the next level with some coaching to refine his footwork, drop, and jam.
2. Maxx Crosby - EDGE
I suspect I’m higher on Crosby than Elway is. I admit he’ll require some refinement and coaching to reach his ceiling, but pop his tape in and tell me you’re not impressed. He’ll probably need a year of strength work, but could grow into a starting level player down the road. However, I have some questions if he’s a true scheme fit, so docked him a bit for it.
3. Ben Burr-Kirven- LINEBACKER
First off, yes, I know he’s small, but I think he can step in day 1 as a nickel backer and grow into a starter if the Broncos are willing to bend their size requirements for the position. He’d be an immediate upgrade over Jewell in coverage and is as slippery as an otter through blocks. He’s more rangy and instinctive than is typically found in this class and I love his game.
4. Chuma Edoga- OFFENSIVE LINE
Reports suggest he’s the kind of guy who will fail if the wrong OL coach gets him, but would thrive under Munchak. He’s a bit unorthodox, yet fits what the Broncos want out of their linemen beautifully. Long with good feet, but needs to get stronger and more consistent.
5. Oshane Ximines - EDGE
The SACKSEER sleeper finished his career with 33 sacks, 51.5 TFLS, and 11 forced fumbles to go along with 13 pass deflections. His burst off the snap can pop off the tape and I like his hands. He has enough athleticism to drop in coverage every now and then, but will need coaching to become more of a liability there. He has experience attacking all over the line of scrimmage, including looping back to the A. Like so many edge rushers this far down the board, he’ll need to get stronger to really make a lasting impact in the league. He could use refinement, but shows a promising repertoire of moves, including counters. There’s a legitimate chance that he’ll go much higher than this, and I’ve seen him as high as the 2nd round and get it. I knocked him in part because I had limited tape and he’ll have a jump from Conference USA. I wouldn’t bet against him, though. It’s been done before.
6. Andy Isabella- Slot RECEIVER
There are things that you really like about Isabella’s game such as his route running, quickness, and vertical speed. Then there’s two things that give you pause: he’s very small and he doesn’t offer much as a contested catch threat. I don’t know if he’s the best fit for the Scangarello offense, but if he lands with someone like Brees or Brady, he could be a stud.
7. D’Andre Walker - EDGE
One of those guys I can’t get proper round value on. I’ve seen him as high as the 2nd round, but without workout numbers, I can’t put him higher than this. I do like his tape, as he shows decent bend, stands up to the run, and flashes tons of effort to chase &#!% down. He’s quick and looks cleaner in space than I anticipated. Still, he badly needs more moves and could stand to get stronger. One thing that’s pretty intriguing about him is that despite standing just 6’2, he has an 81” wingspan.
8. Bobby Okereke- LINEBACKER
Another guy I like, but don’t love. Okereke looks like he could grow into a solid starter at the position. He doesn’t do a ton that “wows” you, but doesn’t make many stupid mistakes either.
9. Isaiah Johnson- CORNERBACK
Johnson is the kind of corner I always took too high in Madden. He has every physical tool you could possibly want and came to the Combine at 6’2 and 208 lbs. At this point, he’s a very tantalizing project, as he only played corner for 2 years at Houston after switching over from wide receiver, but he’s at least a year away from being a serious contributor to the defense.
Well, Isaiah Johnson was sitting at the top #RAS all time for corner, but he greatly underwhelmed on the bench at his pro day and the top spot goes back to #Saints starter Marshon Lattimore. pic.twitter.com/aM5rA90y8X— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) April 14, 2019
In years past, I’ve been leery of project corners, but I would love Donatell and Fangio to have a chance to coach up someone as naturally talented as Johnson. His destination will have a profound impact on his professional career, but he could be the steal of the draft.
10. Justin Hollins - EDGE
He isn’t the same level of pure pass rusher Crosby or Banogu are, but has a lot of experience playing in space and could be an asset there earlier in his career. He needs to get stronger, but could grow into a very good number 3 behind Von Miller and Bradley Chubb.
11. Tytus Howard - OFFENSIVE LINE
He’s quick for a man his size and has a good feel in pass pro. Four year starter at a D2 school, Howard offers an intriguing physical skillset but his technique needs a lot of work. He’s still relatively new to the position so the arrow’s pointing up, but Munch would probably want to keep him from the field for at least a year. He’s talented enough that I could see a team drafting him much earlier than this.
12. Renell Wren - DEFENSIVE LINE
Has the size and athleticism to be an early contributor to the rotation. He’ll need work on the finer points of line play to really make a consistent difference in the NFL, but all the talent is there for a coaching staff to refine. He is riskier than a few guys lower than this, but the ceiling is pretty high.
13. Germaine Pratt - LINEBACKER
I like him less than most, but he’s got an intriguing toolkit as a former safety. I think he has a long way to go to separate from NFL blocks and handle proper angles, but he could be an intriguing upside guy for Fangio.
14. Josh Oliver- TIGHT END
He’s a fluid athlete for the position. He’ll also bring an underrated blocking ability at the next level, but still needs to get stronger to handle NFL opposition. Although he flashes strong hands, he still drops more than he should. I wonder about his upside, which is why he wasn’t included in the Day 2 list, but he’s one of the last true “jack of all trade” options that isn’t also a huge project. Reports have suggested the Broncos are very interested in him.
15. Dillon Mitchell - Z/Slot RECEIVER
How do you feel about Justin Herbert? Well, Mitchel was his favorite receiver last year. He’s the last receiver to really catch my eye, but brings the kind of quick twitch and athleticism you want at the Z. He was a YAC machine at Oregon with the eyes to find holes in the zone, or make the most of the space available once the balls in his hands.
16. Stanley Morgan Jr. - Z/Slot RECEIVER
Wins with guile more than anything, Morgan’s one of the better run routers in this class. He may go higher than this, but because of vertical limitations, I knocked him a bit. He’ll probably be best used on underneath and intermediate routes at the next level.
17. Kingsley Keke - DEFENSIVE LINE
He offers the kind of versatility Fangio said he’s looking for on the defensive line. Has played quite a few techniques during his collegiate career including the nose and B gap, but will need to get stronger to make much of a difference in the NFL. Quick first step is always good.
18. Darius Slayton - Z RECIEVER
If you can look past his inconsistent hands and the craptastic scheme and QB he was stuck with at Auburn, you’ll notice one of the more promising deep threats in this class. He had 32 catches for 20+ yards in his career with 8 that went for 50+. He needs time to develop, but is a true size/speed prospect that looks worthy of a late flyer.
19. Charles Omenihu - DEFENSIVE LINE
I’m probably lower on him than the Broncos are, but couldn’t rationalize placing him higher than this. He has an intriguing ceiling as a long, versatile defensive linemen. If he comes to Denver he’ll need to add some strength and a little bulk to be able to handle B gap in nickel sets but could eventually succeed Derek Wolfe and Adam Gotsis in the role. His wingspan is a ridiculous 85”.
20. Michael Deiter - OFFENSIVE LINE
Has more than 50 games of experience and has played multiple positions. He’ll be a much better run blocker than pass protector early on. Isn’t the best athlete for the position and could struggle at the second level. He fits best at guard in the Broncos scheme.
21. Daylon Mack - NOSE TACKLE
Early in the process, Fangio admitted that he likes working with reclamation projects and/or talented players who haven’t necessarily played up to it. Since then Mack has been on my radar. He was a five star recruit coming out of high school, but only started to put it together his last year under Jimbo Fisher. He has the profile you look for in a solid nose and could turn into a much better pro than collegiate player so long as he gets better at using his hands and keeping his feet with him. Flashes of talent, but needs to find consistency.
22. Dax Raymond - TIGHT END
Profiles as a functional Y. He offers a well rounded game and should serve as a decent outlet receiver. Has a limited upside and isn’t where you want him to be as far as polish. I’m low on him, but I generally dislike low ceiling old prospects.
Day 3 Sleepers & Scheme Fits
More than any other area, I found this group are the guys I got to spend the least amount of time with. This is far from an exhaustive list, but merely some of the guys I found particularly intriguing as I dug into prospects this draft season.
1. Trysten Hill- DEFENSIVE LINE
You can’t teach his first step. He’d be a great fit for Fangio’s gap shooting D if the coaching staff feels comfortable with the character concerns.
2. Sutton Smith - EDGE/BACKER
I want to like Sutton Smith. He’s the Blake Cashman of small school guys who produces, tests well, and really shows up on tape. Unfortunately, he’s also really small and played edge rusher at Northern Illinois. He’d come to the Broncos as a linebacker project and special teams Ace on Day 3, yet I can’t help but wonder if that’s all he’ll ever be.
3. Cameron Smith- LINEBACKER
If you’re looking for a Day 3 starter at linebacker, the USC Trojan could be just what the doctor ordered. I like his instincts and he’s rangy enough for the Fangio D. I do think he needs work against blocks and filling, but there’s some promise here. I think his ceiling is lower than Sutton’s, but his floor is a good bit higher.
4. Foster Moreau - TIGHT END
Moreau is the last tight end that really excites me. The LSU offense seemed to forget about him. Will need work to polish routes and blocking technique. He’s got intriguing physical skills but leaves you wondering if he can grow into more.
5. Lamont Gaillard - OFFENSIVE LINE
Relatively inexperienced for the position, but has the kind of die hard mentality you want out of your O-lineman. Doesn’t impress at the second level and that gets harder in the league. Will need work on his hands, feet, and just about everything else, but could become a valuable interior cog.
6. L.J. Collier - EDGE
Don’t like his physical tools (he’s not quick enough for me). He produced with power, but I wonder if that’ll be enough at the next level.
7. Drue Tranquill - LINEBACKER
He’s quick to decipher what the offense is doing and should offer promise as a coverage player. So long as his knees hold up, the worst case scenario is he’s a depth backer who can cover tight ends and a special team’s ace. A culture guy who will run through a wall if the coach asks for it.
8. Ugo Amadi - DEFENSIVE BACK
He’s more than the sum of his parts, but looks like the Day 3 Darnell Savage. 9 career picks and 25 pass breakups are nothing to sneeze at. He’s small for a safety and slow for a corner. He may fit best as a nickel, although he played a little bit of everything for the Ducks. Brings return and special team experience.
9. Sione Takitaki - LINEBACKER
There are traits that pop on the tape that are very easy to like. The first thing that stood out to me about him is how sudden he is. The BYU product doesn’t back down from contact and relishes violence. He has a contagious energy and will bring some of the positional versatility he used as an edge/backer tweener for the Cougars. He looks fluid moving in space, but isn’t super comfortable in pass D, which means he will need a lot of work anticipating routes if he’s to ever work in man coverage. His tackling can be spotty at times, his angles can be off, and he over pursues. Overall, his game needs a lot of refinement, but I suspect he goes higher than this because some of his strengths will win someone over.
10. Ben Powers - OFFENSIVE LINE
Some love him because he’s a try-hard who has done everything to get to this point. Still, it’s worth asking if he’s close to maxing out as a player. A 3-year starter on one of the best lines in college football, Powers should be a decent fit into the Broncos system, but offers a limited ceiling.
11. Cody Barton- LINEBACKER
Similar to Cameron Smith. I think he’s got a ways to go before he’s more than a special teams player at the next level, but could step in as a low end starter with time. He has moments that wow you, even if the level of competition is a question.
12. Trey Pipkins - OFFENSIVE LINE
He’s kind of a Draft Twitter darling, but offers an intriguing physical skillset.
13. Jalen Jelks - EDGE
The Oregon Collier.
14. Gary Jennings - Z/ Slot RECEIVER
I like his versatility and he’ll give his NFL team a bit of a vertical threat. He will need to become more consistent bringing the ball in and running routes, but remains a promising size/speed guy for Day 3.
15. Drew Sample - TIGHT END
I like him as a number 2 tight end, but that’s probably his ceiling at the NFL level. He’s a strong blocker and will probably wind up as a better receiver than his college tape, but if he’s your best tight end, you need to go draft another one.
16. Marquise Blair - SAFETY
Though he’s more traits than tape at this point, Blair could find a way to stick as a Strong type who thumps anyone trying to catch on him and contributes to special teams. He’ll need to improve in coverage to last in the league.
17. Jimmy Moreland - CORNERBACK
The ball production catches your eye. Moreland owns the career interception record at James Madison with 18 and has the kind of click and close to make him a potential ball hawk in the league. His size limitations will probably leave him at Nickel, so he may not be on the Broncos radar.
18. Alize Mack - TIGHT END
Talented hands and flashes of strong play are promising, but he’s an upside gamble. Looks like a more willing receiver than blocker and needs to become more consistent.
19. Hjalte Froholdt - OFFENSIVE LINE
Mostly played guard during his time at Arkansas and could project to center at the next level. Having switched to offensive line in college and started in the SEC the last 3 years, he’s a strong pass protector who’s more than the sum of his parts. He looks like an underrated fit for the Broncos outside zone scheme.
20. Dontavius Russell - NOSE TACKLE
He’s kind of a draft-and-forget guy because his impact won’t usually show up on the stat sheet. Doesn’t offer a ton as a pass rusher, but will fill space and could be a valuable asset on base downs.
21. Donald Parham - TIGHT END
You know you’re talking to a Draft Twitter hipster when he/she starts waxing poetic about the 6’8” Stetson product. He’s the deeper sleeper that shows how cool you are, but also posted a 85-1319-13 line in the FCS. He offers real promise to a coaching staff that has the time to work with him. Really raw with athletic tools can’t be taught.
22. Kaden Smith - TIGHT END
If you watch his 2018 tape, he looks like the poor man’s Sternberger. Physical limitations knock him down my board a bit, but he could grow into something like Jeff Heuerman. I’m lower on him than most, as I think his ceiling is limited.
23. Will Harris - SAFETY
Played a ton of games but will still need work on reading the play as it happens, so don’t expect him to be a big play maker at the next level. His ceiling is probably something like a #3 with the versatility to play either the free or strong in a pinch. He moves well in space and has the athletic tools to be a contributor.
24. Michael Jackson - CORNERBACK
Another one of those Madden corners I fall too hard for. He’s a size/speed prospect with long arms and good tackles, but may never be more than a depth guy due to so-so play in coverage. He fits what Fangio looks for in a corner and would be a worthwhile late flier and developmental guy.
25. Isaiah Prince - OFFENSIVE LINE
He’s played a lot of games, but offers more talent than technique. Could be a solid developmental prospect for Munchak.
26. Chris Slayton - DEFENSIVE LINE
Experienced player for the Orange. Slayton brings some versatility to his game, but profiles as a rotation piece. He tends to be the guy I draft in Mocks if I couldn’t get a linemen earlier. There’s talent there, though his tape is a bit disappointing.
27. Mitch Hyatt - OFFENSIVE LINE
Another five-star guy who seemingly played college ball for a decade. He holds Clemson’s record for career snaps and starts. He’ll need to become a much better pass protector at the next level, but he’s smart dependable player who has the quickness to excel in a zone blocking scheme with time in an NFL strength program. Potential swing guard/tackle.
28. Yosuah Nijman - OFFENSIVE LINE
6’6, 325lbs, with the kind of light feet zone schemes drool over, but needs a complete technical overhaul.
29. Iman Marshall - DEFENSIVE BACK
Remember what I said about five-star guys? Marshall was one of those and started four years at USC, but his technique is a mess. His best chance at the next level is probably safety and special teamer, but could eventually work his way into dime packages.
30. Saivion Smith - CORNERBACK
He’s quicker than fast, and slower than I really like, but led Alabama in interceptions and fits the scheme as a late round depth option. He only played for a year, so there’s more room to grow. Probably a depth guy at the next level, and you can never have too many corners.
31. Greg Gaines - NOSE TACKLE
Could be more than this, but looks like another space eater.
32. Malik Gant - SAFETY
May be little more than a special teamer at the next level, but he’s intriguing because he’s always going so hard. Hasn’t had much of an opportunity to show up against the pass. Will be the kind of thumper coaches love and was used as a deep center fielder at Marshall. He’d fit the Broncos as a Strong where he can play in the intermediate zones and come up on the run.
33. Ryan Bates - OFFENSIVE LINE
May not be more than a 6th or 7th lineman once he develops, but has experience across the line and moves well for his size.
34. Isaac Nauta
Slow blocker. Did I mention slow?