So here we are again, Broncos Country. It is time for another draft and another fresh start for our franchise to add some fresh juice to the roster as they prepare to be reborn under Sean Payton.
On the bright side here, we still have George Paton in the building keeping some level of consistency to draft day no matter how much this team likes to change coaches from year to year. I’ve honestly been a fan of Paton’s drafting ability. He gets players who have talent and ability. I can’t think of any picks he’s made on draft day that had me scratching my head.
Sadly though, it is not easy to get hyped for this draft given that we don’t have picks until the 3rd round which isn’t where you typically find impact NFL players who can step in on year one and give a team a boost.
If missing round 1 and 2 picks doesn’t make this process hard enough, let’s add to the mix that with a new coaching staff, we don’t really have a good pulse of what this coaching staff is going to be doing this year in Denver.
As always, you are getting my No Bull take on this. I’m not trying to be Sean Payton. I’m being Sadaraine saying, “Here’s where I see weaknesses on this roster and what I’d be looking for.”
Center: We don’t need a starter this year, but we do need a guy to step in next year. With only late-round picks available, that’s a great spot to look for a solid center you can develop and hopefully make an upgrade next season.
Inside Linebacker: I feel like we’ve been beating this drum forever...most likely because we have. The Broncos haven’t significantly improved the ILB position since losing Brandon Marshall and Danny Trevathan. They have been mailing it in for many years and look to be doing so again in 2023. Signing a future starter at ILB is very doable this year.
Tight End: This is just a numbers game. We have 3 tight ends on the roster. I’d be very surprised if we don’t bring in another tight end in this draft.
Those are my big 3 needs. As a GM, if I’d reach a little at all for any position, these 3 would be it.
Beyond that, I think other needs that the team could use depth at are cornerback, safety, and Guard.
Picks I like if they are there when the Broncos are on the clock
Antonio Johnson is a guy that may fall far enough that the Denver Broncos can get him the 3rd round. I’d love the pick as he’s a safety with a big future in the NFL and would be a steal for the orange and blue.
Jaylon Jones is a guy that should be there as well for the Broncos and he’s a pick in the 3rd round that could be an actual impact on the team in 2023.
A tight end we may want to look at for the future is Zach Kuntz. He’s a freak athlete that is just asking to be developed and Sean Payton loves athletic weapons like him in his offense. Season this young man for a year and put him across the field from Greg Dulcich to make opposing defenses wet themselves with abandon.
I’d love to see us pick up Henry To’o To’o who may be there in the 4th round. He’s a guy I would be stoked to develop for 2024 and is the kind of athlete that could rotate in for the Broncos in 2023 and help in special teams as well.
In the 5th round, I’d take a look at Braeden Daniels if he is there. He’s a gem in the rough that has a high ceiling for development.
After the 5th, just trust the scouts. It is rough sledding indeed to really know players that far down the draft boards. Denver has a better-than-average history of finding good picks late in the draft and even one guy that ends up playing for 4 years is a win.
What to look for
As a fan of the team for so long who really enjoys geeking out about our team, the main thing I’m looking for from this draft is more insight into Sean Payton. He’s obviously the man with the plan at Dove Valley. How does he work with George Payton? What kind of players will he be looking for on this roster?
Every pick made is going to inform us more and more about what Sean Payton thinks of this roster. He can say what he wants about incumbent starters and positions of needs. Everything is on the table once the picks are in. Given that we’ll be enjoying our new head coach for many years, I’m excited to start getting insights into what he sees with our roster.