Well boys and girls, you win some and you lose some. In regards to the Broncos, they won the 2016 NFL Draft. Although my positions were close in need and selection, I whiffed on all the guys selected but no one bats 1000, you know what I mean. The Broncos got lucky, made some savvy moves, and made one misfire decision. I know there is a plethora of info on the draft, but I’m going to make it quick and easy, This way when you visit the watering hole later this week, you can be the provider of information. Not the typical Steve, or Mike. They have said enough already haven’t they?
Overall draft grade. For me personally I’m giving Denver a strong B. Here is the list of Draftees made by your Super Bowl 50 Champ Denver Broncos. Man I never get tired of saying that. Yep, looking right at you New England.
Rd 1 Pk 26. Paxton Lynch, QB Memphis A
Rd 2 Pk 63 Adam Gotsis, DT Georgia Tech C-
Rd 3 pk 98 Justin Simmons, S Boston College B
Rd 4 pk 136 Davontae Booker, RB Utah A
Rd 5 pk 144 Conner Mcgovern, G Missouri B+
Rd 6 Pk 176 Andy Janovich, FB Nebraska B
Rd 6 Pk 219 Will Parks, S Arizona B
Rd 7 Pk 228 Riley Dixon, P ‘Cuse Who Cares
The Paxton Lynch selection was crazy awesome. If you were watching the draft like I was, and my wife, even though watching paint dry would probably have been more enjoyable to her, after the Jets took Darron Lee instead of Lynch at 20, it started to look like he would fall all the way to Denver. I still thought the Broncos would pick up a defensive player, but once they moved into the 26th spot, I knew what was coming. Denver had to move up to 26 to make the pick as Dallas and KC were trying to move back into the 1st round to swoop him, but the Broncos were able to sneak up and scoop him. The ole swoop n scoop. Now I know I said that the drop off from Lynch to Prescott wasn’t that big, and I stand by that, but Lynch does have size over Prescott and I still think he will sit at least 6 weeks into the regular season. Lynch is a tower at 6’7 and 245 lbs with room to go. A lot of people are comparing him to Osweiler, but they shouldn’t. Lynch has much better mechanics, meaning wind up and release, and he can move much better. Lynch can run, move in the pocket and get the throw out of his hands in a timely fashion. So why will he sit for a while? He will need to learn how to play under center as he rarely played under center in Memphis. His feet in the pocket could stand improvement as well. He isn’t flat footed but staying on his toes and keeping the legs moving will certainly help his game. In 3-4 yrs he will be a top 12 QB in the NFL.
Now for the only weird, misplaced, curious selection for the Broncos in the draft. Adam Gotsis, DT. Its not that I don’t like him, I do, just not in the 2nd round. He was graded as a 4th rounder because he will only play 2 downs, and struggles with pass rush. Now he can, and probably will develop into a good player, but nothing over night. His size is deceiving. At 6’4 and nearly 290lbs, he moves like a smaller guy. He can get off the snap quick, and his motor never stops. Never. He is a raw talent guy with high upside and can play against the run pretty well. So a good player, just a bit to early for me is all.
Elway, Ellis and Co have built a championship team in rounds 3- undrafted. This is where these guys shine. Justin Simmons is a perfect example if this. Nose for the ball, great speed and when he closes in on a ball runner, he shows up in a foul mood. Size does not denote value. Even with his small frame, he is physical and relentless. Last season he caught 5 interceptions, 8 in his career coupled with 4 forced fumbles. Now I know we have TJ Ward and Darian Stewart back there, but this Is real, quality depth that was very much needed.
Devontae Booker, RB. Some had him as the 2nd best RB in the draft. Top 3 at the very least. He has vision, terrific balance, decisive decision making and burst. He can catch out of the back field and his pass blocking isn’t the worst thing on film either. Drawback? Why was he drafted in the 4th round? Knee injury. He tore his meniscus in November last year. He still managed 1261 yards though. Once healed, Denver will have a top 4 rb combo. Wonderful isn’t it. Yeah, pretty wonderful.
The next two guys taken by Denver, Conner McGovern G and Andy Janovich FB. That’s a guard, and a full back. McGovern is a very versatile offensive line player that can fill needs at tackle, guard and can even step in as a center. The name of the game for this guy is strength. I don’t mean football player strong, I mean, squatting a Fiat 20 times strong. Bench pressing a train car strong. He isn’t going to beat the defensive player across from him so much as just eat him up. Fa-reak. As we are all very aware of, the Oline for Denver last year was not awesome. This pick provides great depth at arguably the biggest need for the Broncos. Couple McGovern with Janovich, and we are looking at some serious upgrades for Kubiak’s system. Now I’m sure that Mr. Peyton Manning will read this, so no offense big guy, but its time to run one system. No more weirdo hybrid, hermaphroditic offense. With the full back in place, ill say it right now, Denver will rush for 2,500 yds between the three tailbacks. Janovich will hit hard, block downfield and can read the defense like the running back. Versatility was the name of the game in the draft this year.
The last relevant pick for Denver was Will Parks, S out of Arizona. Good size and decent speed makes for a young player that can help in situational packages and special teams. Much like Simmons, he can hit hard, and complete tackles. Even if he just plays on kick return/punt returns he should contribute, even early on.
The Draft is such a tease isn’t it? I am so very ready for the season to start, but summer first, maybe. The weather in Denver lately has been ludicrous. Its may 1st, and its snowing out. Enough is enough. But I digress. I thought the draft went well and no matter the team you follow, it had to give you renewed faith and excitement in your team, even those of you in the Dawg Pound. Yeah u might call me a homer, but I’ve been called worse things. In my opinion, Denver had a terrific draft and I cant wait to see how the new additions will pan out. Again fell free to hit me up on twitter @mandell_w and let me know what you think of Denver’s selections.