It is now well-documented how much Dalton Risner, a native Coloradoan, wanted to be a Bronco - and his dream came true Friday when he got the call as Denver’s 41st pick.
But it turns out all of the new draft picks headed to the Broncos had some serious love for their new team.
And not just because of current stars like Von Miller as teammates or legends like John Elway as the GM, but because of the new coaches.
You heard that right - the coaches. It’s been a couple of years since the coaching staff was a true selling point for this team, after all.
But since almost all of the new Broncos spent some time in interviews with GM John Elway and the coaching staff, they are coming in excited about their new teachers.
And it wasn’t just from nice-but-useless meet-and-greet interviews. With Justin Hollins, for example, the Oregon linebacker sat down with OLB coach Brandon Staley and went over specific plays he could be used in.
“He [and I] really clicked. I loved the system that he was showing me and the plays. We sat down and we talked. We really hit it off,” Hollins said. “I feel that underneath him, he is going to develop me. He’s going to show me exactly what it takes to be one of the best. He has coached the best, and I feel like he is one of the best position coaches out there.”
For defensive end Dre’mont Jones, the experience with the coaching staff was “really chill.”
“I talked to like literally everyone on defense and met with Coach Fangio. He seems like a great guy to talk to,” said Jones, who also spoke with former Bronco Kenny Anunike, a grad assistant at Ohio State. “I can tell [Fangio] is confident in what he’s doing and everything. ...I’m very excited because I know how much of a genius he is defensively.”
On the other side of the ball, Risner can’t wait to get started with Hall-of-Famer Mike Munchak as his offensive line coach as well as former Bronco Chris Kuper as the assistant.
“I watched Chris growing up and play for years here at right guard. I think I shook his hand a couple more times up there in the offensive line room,” Risner said. “To be able to get the opportunity to get coached by him, and not only by him but by Coach Munchak, those are two coaches who going into this process I wanted to get coached by. I’m sure there are going to be days that they are on me, but that is what I want. That’s why they are great coaches. I can’t wait for Coach Kuper to get on to me and get me going in the direction I need to go.”
When Drew Lock came to town, his interview with the Broncos was more film session with Rich Scangarello than interview (though, of course, THAT was the interview).
Lock noted that the new offensive coordinator talked at length with him about fixing his rollout to the left.
“All quarterbacks can roll out right and throw. I do a little unorthodox thing sometimes when I go to the left, and we’re going to focus on that and getting it down right. You’ve got to get out of the pocket. You’ve got to make plays out of the pocket, and that was one of the main things we talked about,” Lock said. “For him to be able to go ahead and say something to me in that early meeting, allowing me to work on it now before I ended up being a Bronco, I think that was huge. That was one of the reasons why I felt good coming out of the meeting.”
For Lock, who was the Broncos’ third pick of the draft, second in the second round, the young quarterback knows his place on this team is to come in and learn.
But learn big and learn immediately. He felt that commitment to teaching him from the Broncos early on in the draft process.
“A lot of these teams, they’ll talk to you about your film and go over a play, and not necessarily critique you and tell you what you need to get better on. You’ve got to ask them for that,” Lock noted. “That was just the different vibe I got here. Everything was played out, and he had those tips for me, which made me feel like this could be a home in the future. Now, I’m standing here a Denver Bronco.”
Are you excited the draftees are excited?
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Words are just words...I take nothing seriously until they show it on the field.
Words ARE just words, but this is a really encouraging start.