The 2014 NFL draft is just a few short hours away, NFL fans, but the rumors are still going strong.
The latest batch of rumors has a lot to do with teams moving up or down from their current standing in the draft. Teams drafting later could choose to move up to grab better talent (but only if they have the resources, of course), while teams not in love with talent at their current position could choose to move back and earn more picks later on.
Both are compelling strategies, though stocking up on picks by trading back might be the better move if you value quantity. Regardless, be sure that the current draft order will change by the time the draft begins. Heck, it'll probably even change while the draft is going on.
Here are the latest rumors regarding the movement of teams in the 2014 NFL draft.
Denver Wants to Move Up
The Denver Broncos, currently slated to pick at No. 31 following a trip to the Super Bowl, are apparently thinking about moving up in the draft, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com:
Where the Broncos are looking to move up to is anybody's guess, though it could be into the teens to take a linebacker like Alabama's C.J. Mosley or Ohio State's Ryan Shazier. Several cornerbacks like Justin Gilbert, Bradley Roby and Kyle Fuller would also be available in that range.
After being trounced by the Seattle Seahawks in the Super Bowl, Denver has made a concerted effort to improve defensively this offseason. That should be its primary focus in Round 1, though the team could also look at the offensive line if it stays at No. 31.
Peyton Manning probably doesn't have many years left, so the window is closing pretty quickly in Denver. With a few smart picks on the defensive side of the ball, this team can make it back to the Super Bowl. Moving into the middle portion of Round 1 is a good idea.
San Fran Wants to Move Up, But the Price is Really High
Everyone knows the San Francisco 49ers want to move up, but Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News points out that the price might be too high for the Niners to move into the top 10:
San Francisco is likely in the market for a big-play wide receiver. The current options at No. 30 likely will include the likes of Florida State's Kelvin Benjamin and Fresno State's Davante Adams. Moving into the top 10 would have ensured the Niners a chance at Texas A&M's Mike Evans or LSU's Odell Beckham.
The Niners don't have to move inside the top 10 to get a better receiver than Benjamin or Adams, though. By moving into the middle of the round—say, pick No. 15 or so—guys like USC's Marqise Lee and Oregon State's Brandin Cooks would be available.
Colin Kaepernick is in need of another wideout to play with Michael Crabtree and Anquan Boldin. Vernon Davis acts as a receiver, but Kaepernick needs a speedster that can outrun defenders and play big over the top of defenses.
That type of receiver probably won't be there at No. 30.
Miami Might Move Out of No. 19 Pick
Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald reports that the Miami Dolphins are working on potentially moving from the No. 19 pick:
One day before the NFL draft's long-awaited first round gets underway, the Dolphins have fielded and initiated multiple phone calls to other teams to "set the table," as one source said, to trade down or trade up in the first round, according to multiple NFL sources.
In trade down scenarios the Dolphins have had preliminary discussions with Philadelphia (No. 22), Cleveland (No. 26) and New Orleans (No. 27), among others. One source said the Dolphins have also spoken with San Francisco (No. 30), although dropping behind Carolina (No. 28) might expose the Dolphins to losing their top OT option.
Should the Dolphins move up, filling a hole on the offensive line with a quality option become a real possibility. Notre Dame's Zack Martin has gone to Miami in countless mock drafts, but there's still no guarantee that he'll be there at No. 19.
Keeping Ryan Tannehill off his back needs to be the primary goal for Miami next season. He has shown that he can be a serviceable quarterback when given time in the pocket to make reads. The Dolphins need to do whatever necessary in this draft to ensure that they can make the offensive line stronger.
That might mean moving up, and it might mean moving back. It might even mean standing pat at No. 19. They'll need to assess the situation better as the draft gets even closer.