NOTE: This is a revision of an article that was posted up by Rob Burson a few weeks ago. For a related article by Burson, check here: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/160542-denver-broncos-can-wait-until-later-rounds-to-get-defensive-linemen
Big, Bad B.J. Raji, the potential nose tackle the Denver Broncos covet with there first draft pick, will more than likely be off the boards by the 12th pick.
If he's not, he'll obviously be picked up.
But with odds against Denver getting the dominant 337lb lineman here, how about a DE that can also play outside linebacker in a 3-4 system?
Will Everette Brown still be around at No. 12 for the Broncos?
There's a good chance he will. The Mile High team will snag him up without flinching. He's a pass rushing force who could step in immediately and give opposing teams something to seriously think about.
He'll rack up sacks, and also contribute to a healthy infusion of behind the line tackles.
This guy fits squarely into the Broncos new hybrid OLB/DE scheme. He can perform with a fist in the dirt, or standing up. He's projected to go between 10-30, so there's a good chance the boys in Orange can get this player.
He's a little undersized for a lineman, so Tyson Jackson sometimes stands out as potentially better for the moves the Broncos need to make. But Brown is more dynamic and offers a better all around package.
Jackson is the one dimensional DE.
Brown can do pass rushing, coverage, and run stuffing.
Either would be a good choice, but I'm going with the dark horse Everette Brown here. More than a little bit of my thinking here is because Tyson Jackson will more than likely be gone by pick 12, as I see things.
After securing a defensive lineman (of sorts), the Broncos will continue to add to defense overall with their 18th pick.
He's been coached by Pete Carroll and Ken Norton Jr in a system that has steadily produced top notch linebackers.
In 2008, he was awarded the Chuck Bednarik Award, annually given to the No. 1 overall defensive player in the country, as judged by NCAA coaches and college football experts across the nation.
In the 2008 Rose Bowl, he emerged as the defensive player of the game.
He's been hailed as the next Junior Seau.
At No. 18 in the 2009 draft, the Denver Broncos will scoop up the phenom that is Rey Maualuga.
His intense and emotional play at inside linebacker is precisely what the Broncos need to turn around the lackluster and uninspired defense of seasons past.
His numbers are stellar, and there's no doubt that Maualuga will make a major impact on whatever team picks him up in the first round.
Denver fans are hoping he lands with the Broncos, and thus begins to lift the team out of the quagmire of the past few years.
With Brown and Maualuga plugged into Nolan's 3-4, and the seasoned secondary prowling the backfield, the Denver Bronco's will noticeably improve on defense this year.
Outside of somehow picking up B.J. Raji at No. 12 (he'll be gone by then), getting these two players would make the 2009 Denver Broncos draft a success.
Though the secondary seems to be fairly cinched up for the year—what with Dawkins, Goodman, Hill newly signed, and Champ still around—an infusion of youth is needed back there. The Broncos are improved here, though not set for the future, and should use the 49th pick on a corner back.
Beyond this, it'll be time for the Broncos to get busy with defensive line role players.
They may not rise to the top of the AFC this year, but the new Denver defense will be respectable and at times formidable on the field.
I'm a strong proponent of the Broncos drafting linemen.
It's a huge need.
But with 12 and 18 there are two players who bring a great deal of diversity and intensity to the game of play. Despite the naysaying of the experts, Everette Brown still has a real shot of turning out to be a true DE in the NFL. Maualuga has potential to be the next Junior Seau. Hopefully the Broncos staff snags both players up come draft day.