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Are you mocking me: What if Drew Lock is “the guy?”

How can Elway capitalize on his third year passer?

Drew Lock’s return to the starting lineup means the Broncos are back to trying to figure out what they have in their starting quarterback. Yesterday I wrote about what he needs to improve upon in order to make the most of the opportunity.

The reaction was as I expected. Nothing I write ever creates as much hatemail as when I write about a Broncos’ starting quarterback. The reality is we do not have a clue if Lock is “it” right now. The good news is we should have a better idea in 12 games.

Mock draft scenarios wait for no one, however. So today it seemed like a great chance to dig into how the Broncos can best surround Drew Lock with talent if they consider him the answer in 2021.

For the sake of transparency, I want to be clear about my methods heading in. Going forward these posts will have a rudimentary free agent notes. This isn’t meant to be exhaustive so much as make it clear how I approached the mock. As we get closer to March I’ll add in free agent additions. The hope is this creates a cleaner picture for where my head was at as I went through the scenario.

Today I’m using The Draft Network’s Mock Machine to add college talent.

Franchised / Extended / Retained

Garett Bolles - Left Tackle

Justin Simmons - Safety

Phillip Lindsay - Running back

Alexander Johnson - Linebacker

Von Miller - Edge

Davontae Harris - Cornerback

Calvin Anderson - Tackle

The Trade Down

Philosophically, I’m very pro-trade down. 2021 even more than normal.

If quarterback is not the priority, accumulating draft capital is wise. With opt outs, Covid-19’s impact on practices and games, and historical analysis, I prefer to throw extra darts rather than go “all-in” on any one prospect.

With Bolles, Simmons, and Johnson back in the fold as well as Courtland Sutton and Von’s return to health it looks like the only “premium” position that makes sense around the top of the draft is cornerback. The two top prospects come with pretty significant questions I’ll need to study to address better. Patrick Surtain appears to be a better fit in a man-heavy coverage scheme than Vic Fangio’s, while Caleb Fairly opted out and has missed time due to injury previously.

A couple of phone calls later and we find ourselves with five picks in the top 100. Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields, and Trey Lance are off the board so I’m surprised at the offers. The Arizona Cardinals are pitching me two picks in the top 50 and a fifth.

“I’ll call you back,” I tell Steve Keim.

Cleveland’s on the other line. It’s a real haul.

Sorry Steve.

T.1.22. Quincy Roche - Edge - Miami

I pass on the chance at Penn State’s Micah Parsons and come away with an explosive hurricane. This isn’t about replacing Von Miller. It isn’t an indictment of Bradley Chubb either. It’s about helping them. Watching how the Broncos’ rush has had to transform without 58 has only convinced me that he’s vital to the 2021 roster. So is depth.

Let the local media drum up drama, the Broncos pass rush will attack opponents in waves.

2.39. Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah - Hybrid - Notre Dame

My phone rings, it’s Les Snead. I look at the board again, then down at a report from one of my more trusted scouts.

“He’s like Davion Taylor with high level instincts.”

Sorry Les.

T.2.54. Jalen Mayfield - Tackle - Michigan

With Bolles on the Franchise tag, I turn my attention to shoring up the right side. Even with Ja’Wuan James back on the roster we need to add depth given how the position’s fared without him and Elijah Wilkinson a New York Giant.

Mayfield is the kind of toolsy prospect I fall in love with every summer. Yes, I know it’s October. Thanks Covid.

3.71. Chazz Surrat - Linebacker - North Carolina

I almost break my “don’t trade up” rule for the Tar Heel. All those years he spent playing quarterback have given him the kind of instincts you dream of. With Justin Strnad’s return to healthy and Johnson back for at least this year, I’m really excited for Fangio’s more athletic linebacker corps.

T.3.85. Derion Kendrick - Cornerback - Clemson

There will be snickers about the Broncos’ never ending third round cornerback spree. I don’t care. Receiver, Corner, Edge, and running back are the four positions you need to expect depth to play early and often. Because of this I have a note in my desk that says “don’t forget the backups dummy.”

Ed Donatell’s going to make Kendrick into a superstar.

T.3.93. Kenneth Gainwell - Running back - Memphis

Two safeties go off the board and I get another call from Eric DeCosta. Quick glance at my notes and we’re picking up a fourth to drop down two spots. The Ravens take Kolby Harvell-Peel, who isn’t on our board.

I’m looking at another former quarterback here.

Poll

Micah Parsons, or Quincy Roche, Jalen Mayfield, AND Derion Kendrick?

This poll is closed

  • 26%
    Parsons for sure.
    (62 votes)
  • 37%
    That trade was legit.
    (86 votes)
  • 35%
    Who knows. Wait 3 years.
    (83 votes)
231 votes total Vote Now

Your Broncos’ News

New England Patriots canceling Friday’s practice after COVID positive - Mile High Report

The New England Patriots have reported another positive COVID-19 test and are shutting down their facilities on Friday.

Denver Broncos at New England Patriots updated betting odds for Week 6 - Mile High Report

The Denver Broncos get a Bye Week inserted into the past and now face a New England Patriots team likely to have their roster back healthy in Week 6.

Make no mistake, Bill Belichick is the real Broncos’ adversary on Sunday - Mile High Report

The long-time, and disgustingly successful head coach of the Patriots got much of his defensive coaching chops right here in the Mile High City.

Denver Broncos film review: Time for Drew Lock to put up or shut up - Mile High Report

We don’t know if Drew Lock’s “the guy” yet. The clock is ticking.

How will Bill Belichick plan for Drew Lock and the Denver Broncos? - Mile High Report

Drew Lock is welcomed back with a huge test. Is he ready?

What’s wrong with the Broncos’ line? - Mile High Report

Can the offensive line turn it around?

Collinelli’s Mock Draft 1.0 — BLUE CHIP SCOUTING

I’d like to formally apologize to any Broncos fan who is upset right now. Picking sixth just isn’t a good spot for a team that needs a tackle. With Sewell off the board, there isn’t another tackle I value in the top-10.

NFL News

Keeping Calm—and Aaron Rodgers—Is Key to Green Bay’s Blistering Start - The Ringer

There was skepticism about Green Bay’s prospects in 2020, but we probably should have seen this undefeated Packers team coming

Myles Garrett focused on Ben Roethlisberger, not Mason Rudolph - ProFootballTalk

“I haven’t thought about it,” Garrett said, via Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com. “Focusing on how I’m going to get to Ben. I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it, whether that’s down the road or whenever we see each other. I’m just focused on the gameplan and getting the win. That comes secondary.”

NFL trade deadline offers - 13 proposals for players who could get dealt in 2020, including Sam Darnold, Dwayne Haskins, Zach Ertz

If Denver loses its next two games and falls out of the playoff race at 1-5, it will have to face facts. There’s no sense in having Simmons play the second half of a lost season before letting him leave in free agency. Locking in a second-round pick gets the Broncos a better pick than a third-round compensatory selection, has that pick arrive a year early and allows general manager John Elway to spend in free agency without negating that would-be compensatory pick.