According to 9NEWS Denver’s Mike Klis, the Denver Broncos held a top-30 pre-draft visit today with Tennessee defensive end/outside linebacker Byron Young.
Per source, Broncos held top 30 visit today with Vols' OLB/DE Byron Young. Great story. Dollar General asst manager for 2 years out of HS. Then JC, then two years at TEN, 12.5 sacks. 6-2 1/2, 253, 4.43 40. Broncos may have to trade up from 67 or hope he slips. More: #9sports https://t.co/jmM3O14Jsm— Mike Klis (@mikeklis) April 11, 2023
First, a reminder or refresher on what exactly a top 30 visit is. Basically, each NFL team in the days and weeks before the start of the NFL draft is allowed to invite up to 30 different prospects to come in for what amounts to a job interview. From there, they will work them out, show them the facility, meet with coaches, and basically have a job interview. It is just another step in the long scouting process leading up to the NFL Draft.
He is a 6’2”, 250-pound edge rusher out of Tennessee who ran an impressive 4.43 40-time at the NFL Scouting Combine. He also jumped a 38-inch vertical jump and put up 22 reps in the bench press. He is an intriguing edge rusher prospect and is ranked as the 17th-best edge rusher in this deep class according to The Athletic’s Dane Brugler who has him projected to go in the third or fourth round.
Brugler states he has issues with the run game, but his flashes as a pass rusher make him an intriguing prospect for NFL teams.
A two-year starter at Tennessee, Young played boundary defensive end (LEO role) in defensive coordinator Tim Banks’ 4-3 base, standing up and rushing with his hand on the ground. He’s had a winding football journey since high school, including two years working at a Dollar General and Circle K to support himself while he got his football career back on track. A “wind him up and let him loose” type of rusher, Young is an explosive, hard charger and at his best on T/E stunts because of the balance and quickness to stay on his rush path. However, he is undersized and, his role will be limited at the next level because of his deficiencies in closed areas. Overall, Young can be engulfed in the run game, and his rush stalls too quickly at contact, but his energy and pass-rush flashes lead to backfield plays. Though he has limitations in the run game, he has the potential to make a living as a glorified sub-rusher in the NFL.
Young was a two-year starter for the Volunteers and during that span, he was a key member of their defense. During his two seasons, he totaled 83 tackles, 23.5 tackles for a loss, 12.5 sacks, 1 interception, and 2 pass deflections. This past season, Young totaled 37 tackles, 12 tackles for a loss, and 7 sacks.
The Broncos have a loaded edge rushing group but one that is full of question marks. Randy Gregory signed a big-time free-agent deal last season but continued to struggle with injuries but was productive when healthy. Baron Browning flashed immense potential last year but still is growing as a player. After that, you have the final pick in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft in Nik Bonnito. The undersized pass rusher flashed at times but still is an unproven player. Former seventh-round pick Jonathon Cooper has flashed at times and might be the team's best run defender at the position. So, with all these questions and a new coaching staff in place, they could still add to this positional group in the draft.
As for Young, his game reminds me a lot of Bonitto’s. He is a kinda undersized but flashy pass rusher who struggles against the run. You can never have enough pass rushers, so I would not be against it, but it would be an interesting addition to the roster.