2012 NFL Draft: How Peyton Manning Aquisition Shakes Up Broncos' Draft Needs
With Peyton Manning ultimately choosing Denver as his destination, the Broncos' draft preparation and strategy needs to be tweaked over the next month or so.
Offensive weapons are now more of a priority with Manning behind center as opposed to a Tebow-styled offense. The Broncos could potentially trade their first-round pick to score elite receiver Mike Wallace from the Steelers. If they don't acquire a solid receiver during free agency, look for them to draft a wideout in the second round.
Assuming Denver still has pick No. 25 in the first-round, they should select a cornerback or defensive tackle. The defense needs to keep Manning's arm and legs fresh and healthy by keeping him off the field as much as possible.
A young cornerback who can learn from Champ Bailey would certainly improve their defensive backfield. Between Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil, the corners of the defensive line are impressive, however, Denver's interior strength is lacking. A strong stud like Fletcher Cox or Michael Brockers would elevate the defense to the level it needs in order to reach the post-season.
The strategy when it comes to the quarterback position has to be changed as well. Previously, the Broncos needed to draft a guy that could come in and potentially compete with Tim Tebow for the starting job. With Manning as Denver's signal caller, they should target a young guy who can learn the system and develop under Manning's leadership and guidance. A player like that should be available in the sixth or seventh-round.
No matter what the Broncos decide to do with their seven picks in the upcoming NFL draft, there are certainly more eyes focused upon them. With Peyton Manning turning 36 this year, it is of utmost importance to get players via the draft and free agency that will help them reach the next level and win a Super Bowl in the next few years.
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