I'll be honest after looking at this, but because Denver gave up the pick acquired by the Chubb trade for Sean Payton, Denver won't be able to grab someone until the 3rd round. And given George Paton's philosophy of "wanting more picks", I thought what would make sense to draft and did consider the utilization of trades from some of Denver's current players due to the unhappy nature of lack of capital. So...without introduction, here's what I had in mind from the PFF Mock Draft:
Round 1 - NONE
Round 2 - (Denver trades Courtland Sutton and their 3rd round pick for Washington's 2nd, 5th, and 2 6ths, 2024 5th and 6th, and 2025 7th), then trades back (Denver trades 47th pick to Carolina for 2nd, 4th and 6th picks, plus 2024 5th and 2025 4th and 7th picks) Parker Washington
This was a difficult choice, but it's unclear how much Sutton is probably going to want to be paid to keep. So...to kind of upgrade the WR room more differently, I picked Parker Washington. Yes, this is a strange choice, but...the one thing about him is that he has a knack for getting open and is a quarterback's best friend - passers just need to toss the ball in his area and he'll come down with it. Think of how good he and Jeudy could be when it comes to the pass game.
Round 3 - Moro Ojomo
I picked Ojomo because he's an absolute STUD when it comes to the run D. NFL Draft Buzz has him a 97% on run defense with an 87% on pass rush ability. Look at some of his absurd stats outside of that. 10 2/8 hands (76%), 34 3/8 arm (83%), and 83 3/8 span (92%). What a big upgrade he would be over 6'0" Shelby Harris.
Round 4 - (Denver trades K.J. Hamler and 108th pick for Chicago's 103rd and 2024's 6th and 7th picks) A.T. Perry
I know what you're thinking. Why this choice? Well...earlier in the 1st round, I picked Parker to replace K.J., and I needed a Sutton replacement size-wise. So the 6'5" A.T. made sense to me. Perry could use a bit of coaching because during his time at Wake Forest, he constantly ran a limited route tree, and depending on who Denver's OC is, perhaps he could find a place to fit in the scheme. One thing about this Demon Deacon receiver is that he’s very good in contested-catch situations, using his frame effectively to make plays facing the quarterback. Perry also shows a knack for high-pointing the ball, consistently outmuscling defensive backs. I could imagine this kid will be some kind of special if they can get the best out of him. Could you imagine pairing him and Tim Patrick together? The "twin tower" receivers at work, ladies and gents.
Round 4 - Joe Tippmann
I picked a center in Tippmann because, assuming Cushenberry's time is probably reaching an end and it's time to let him go, here's a guy you could probably count on as a possible option as backup to Glasgow. Joe is the same size as Graham, at 6'6", so...probably would be nice to have another plug-type player in the interior. He’ll consistently finish blocks, dropping on defenders when Tippmann has them on the ground. Tippmann shows good awareness reacting to twists and stunts as a pass protector, and he has the strength to anchor against bigger defensive linemen. Tippmann's biggest problem is that he has good-not-great feet. Dealing with speed on the edge will likely be a problem, especially because he’s more comfortable moving forward as a run blocker than he is retreating as a pass protector. But with the right coaching, he could be a great serviceable backup for Denver at center.
Round 4 - (Denver trades Lloyd Cushenberry III and two future 4ths for Philly's 4th and future 3rd) Jarrett Kingston
Denver needs to find a long-term right tackle. So that leads me to Wazzu, and Jarrett Kingston. Kingston's better as a run blocker than as a pass blocker. But he does exhibit good patience in pass protection, sitting back in his set rather than leaning and lunging. That being said, he is a short-area blocker with limited range and doesn't consistently get to the second level. Will play undisciplined at times, especially in space. Lacks a finishing attitude. If Denver can get him to be teachable, he and Meinerz would be a great combination on the right side of the O-Line.
Round 5 - Jake Haener
No...this is not
Derek Carr in disguise. But Jake's another Fresno State QB that has two things that I kind of like. For one, he is a very confident passer and shows good accuracy and feel when in rhythm. Showed better ball placement from past years and throws very catchable passes. He does put too much air in some of his throws and needs to show a lower trajectory on deep throws. But the other thing about him is that he is generally accurate on intermediate and short throws; flashes anticipation and placement on intermediate outs and the ability to lead receivers on deeper throws. Why him? I just can't see Rypien being the answer in the long run. And if Russ falters to any degree in the 2023 season, this is someone I could see worth the time grabbing as a true backup to Denver.
Round 6 - (Denver trades Albert Okwuegbunam to Chicago for current and future 6th) Will Mallory
Does anyone know of the state of Saubert and/or Tomlinson? Are either going to return to Denver? Mallory to me screams depth. But also, is a decent run blocker.
Round 6 - Brenton Cox Jr.
I haven't gotten an edge player yet. But given that Denver's got a bunch of edge depth like Cooper, Kongbo, Allen, and Patrick, it makes sense to sort of fit Brenton into there. Look for him as PS a possibility for him.
Round 6 - (Denver trades down 178th pick for Jacksonville's 202nd and 2 future 7ths) Austin Stogner
I could see this as a PS player. He lacks capability of blocking edge rushers and needs to get stronger to do that.
Round 6 - Dee Winters
I didn't pick a LB in this draft. So...that sends me to the former Horned Frog Dee Winters. Practice squad/Special Teams depth perhaps?
Round 7 - Drake Thomas
Again...more depth at the ILB position. Can't consider counting out that position for help.
Round 7 - Nick Saldiveri
I picked another tackle sort of as depth. Should be worth sending to PS if anything.
So...what do you think? I turned 6 picks into 13 for building now, for depth, and for their future. And no C grades in this...which is a plus, at least for me.