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Denver Broncos select Washington offensive lineman Luke Wattenberg with 171st overall pick in the fifth round

The Denver Broncos make their third selection in the 5th round by trading up from 179th to 171st to draft offensive lineman Luke Wattenberg.

Arkansas State v Washington Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images

Denver Broncos select Washington offensive lineman Luke Wattenberg with their 171st overall selection in the fifth round of the 2022 NFL Draft. They traded up with the Green Bay Packers to make this selection.

He’s a 6’4”, 299-pound interior offensive lineman who has center/guard versatility. He is also a solid fit in the Broncos' zone blocking scheme.

Luke Wattenberg was a three-sport standout at JSerra Catholic High, including a four-year letterman on the varsity football team. He earned first team all-state and league lineman of the year honors as a senior (played left and right tackle). A four-star recruit, he committed to Washington over Stanford and worked himself into the starting lineup as a redshirt freshman. He started a school-record 48 consecutive games during the past five seasons, initially at left tackle then left guard and then center the last two seasons. With his footwork and hips, Wattenberg is a smooth mover and trusts the timing and placement of his hands, but he routinely gives ground vs. bull rushers because of his tall pads and faulty anchor. Although he can leverage lanes as a run blocker, his average play strength isn’t ideal. Overall, Wattenberg will struggle vs. point-of-attack power, but he plays quick and rugged with the guard-center experience that could help land him on a roster.

Wattenberg comes off as a classic late-round zone-blocking scheme fit who may potentially turn into a serviceable lineman at the next level. The Broncos did a lot of work on the center/guard prospects during the pre-draft period and they nab themselves on here with their final fifth-round selection.

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