Marshall's Been Shipped to Miami
Though the drafts is less than a week away, their is still no consensus on the Broncos selection at #11, some say Dez Bryant, some Rolando Mcclain, and even other's encourage the Broncos to reach for Maurice Pouncey.
Losing Marshall did leave a huge hole in our offensive game-plan and I believe that the Broncos will try to replace him with more than one player. The Broncos may trade to acquire a receiver like a Josh Morgan from the 49ers or Michael Clayton who's obviously the odd man out in the Ravens passing attack, both could carry 3rd round or lower price tags and could contribute immediately to the Broncos passing game.
Scheffler's Gone Too
In a bizarre trade sent Scheffler and our 7th round pick to Detroit, LB Ernie Sims to Philidalphia, and a 5th round pick (#137 Overall/Round 5 Pick 6) to Denver.
The Offensive Line
The Broncos line lacks true talent at both Guard positions and Center. Unless Olsen is ready to step into the starting lineup, another season with Kuper at guard could be a bad sight to see. Kuper seriously struggled down the stretch last season as did much of the O-line. Clady and Harris look like bookend tackles, now it's time to add some talent to the interior of our line.
After releasing Andra Davis, the Broncos did nothing to attempt to fill his shoes. That shows that they plan to acquire another MLB via the draft or free agency. With not much left on the shelve in free agency, the draft looks like the more reliable source for an upgrade.
The improvements along the defensive line should improve the play of the entire defense this season. With bigger holes and better line play, it will be easier for the linebackers get to their lanes and rush the passer or shutdown the run. Jamal Williams will be the biggest difference maker to the Broncos defense next season. A true NT will let the Broncos be more aggressive with their linebackers in 2010.
Broncos 2010 Nfl Mock Draft
Round 1 Pick 11: MLB Rolando Mcclain (Alabama)
Though some think that the Browns or the Jags may be interested in Mcclain, I'd say it's a stretch for either of them. The Jags have far more pressing needs, as do the Browns, then MLB.
Dez Bryant is an obivious candidate for the Jags at #10 with their lackluster receiving corp, and Berry is a lock to the Browns if he lasts that long.
After letting go of Andra Davis, the Broncos left a spot warm and comfy for Mcclain to jump into. He's an upgraded, younger, harder-hitting version of Andra Davis. He'd instantly step into the same capacity and give the Broncos defense a bit more pop in their linebacker corp. He's the best value at #11 and fills a huge position of need for the Broncos.
Round 2 Pick 11: OG Jon Asamoah (Illinois)
Asamoah would be a huge upgrade and instant starter on the Broncos offensive line. He can play either OG position and excels at pass-blocking. Would need to improve his lower body strength to improve his run blocking but would still be an instant upgrade over Kuper.
He fills a huge need and although he may be a bit of a reach here, his stock has improved lately. They say the tape doesn't lie, so go watch some tape. He's worth a second round selection and if not the Broncos someone will draft him in the second.
Ro und 2 Pick Pick 13: WR Damian Williams (USC)
I chose Williams over Benn, Thomas, and Gilyard because of his superior route running skills. Having come from a pro style offense, Williams has shown himself to be a polished route runner with excellent hands. At 6'1 195 pounds, Williams is a good sized target that can go up and get the ball. Doesn't possess amazing top end speed, but can break arm tackles and pick up yards after the catch.
Round 3 Pick 16: OC J.D. Walton (Baylor)
Walton comes tailor made to fit right into the offense the Broncos deploy. Mcdaniel's will be glad to see him available at this point in the 3rd round.
Though his pass-blocking will need some work, he is an elite run blocker who excels at getting to the second level of the defense. He'd be a welcome addition for Moreno and the entire Broncos offensive line.
Round 4 Pick 16: MLB Brandon Spikes (Florida)
What a huge fall for a player once thought to be a late first early second round selection. After running a snail slow 5.04 40 yard dash, Spikes draft stock took a major hit. his body of work in college is impressive nonetheless. He was consistently in on big plays for the Gators and seemed to be a bit smarter than everyone around him.
Use great angles to make up for his lack of speed. Finds the quickest path and takes it. Never gives up on a play and is an above average tackler. He'd be a welcome addition to give the Broncos depth in their LB corp.
Another possibility would be to play Mcclain and Spikes inside, with Dumervil and Williams on the outside. Though Williams is a very capable MLB, Neither Mcclain or Spikes has the ability to move to OLB leaving Williams to slide outside.
Round 5 Pick 6: WR Danario Alexander (Missouri)
At 6'5 215 pounds, Alexander can provide the big target the Marshall did. Getting back into the 5th round could turn out to pay monster dividends if Alexander pans out. Though he's not the fastest WR available, he's physical, breaks tackles, and picks up yards after the catch. With some polishing of his route-running skill, Alexander could be a real steal in the 5th round.
Round 6 Pick 14: RB Charles Scott (LSU)
Now that the Broncos final pick is in the sixth round, a fullback doesn't seem very likely. Scott is a big, bruising, powerful runner who would complement Moreno nicely.
With good speed for his size, excellent burst into the hole, and beast open field skills, Scott could be the best short-yardage back of this draft.
Please, go watch this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ROrIY31e7yE
I'm sure the Broncos would like to get more picks to try to add more depth to their roster. I believe they patched the Defensive line through free agency so that they could focus on other holes in the roster. Next year they will focus on adding young talent to the defensive line early and often.
Though this draft doesn't fill all the holes on the Broncos roster, picking up both Spikes and Mcclain would instantly improve the outlook of our LB's next year.
A. Smith D. Mcbath B. Dawkins C. Bailey
J. Bannan/J. Williams/J. Green
That's a starting defensive unit that would definitely be an upgrade over last year's make shift 3-4 defense.
On Offense we'd have:
D. Williams Clady/Kuper/Walton/Asamoah/Harris E. Royal
J. Gaffney K. Orton D. Alexander
S. Larsen K. Moreno/C. Scott
Losing Marshall really hurt the overall outlook on offense but with better blocking and a more team directed approach, look for Orton to spread the ball around using a lot of 3/4/5 receiver sets to maximize his opportunities. Moreno should get more opportunities to validate his draft position next season with the Broncos having more time to develop ways of getting him the ball.
Either way, the Broncos need to upgrade mostly at MLB, WR, and on the O-line. This draft would fill all those holes well allowing the Broncos to add some additional depth at WR and upgrading the OLB position as well by moving Williams back outside.
Mcbath and Dawkins should be fine at safety for another season. If Mays falls to the Broncos pick in the second round they may be tempted to draft him but would probably prefer Nate Allen for his superior coverage skills. an upgrade isn't a huge issue with Renaldo Hill providing depth at both FS and SS.
If Alphonso Smith can step up and start opposite of Bailey or play nickel, he and Goodman would provide the Broncos with good depth at CB as well. Ayers stepping up would also go a long way towards improving the Broncos depth at OLB. Both Smith and Ayers need to step up this season and contribute to the defense.
Hopefully the Broncos strike gold in this draft or it could be a long year. Without better blocking and overall offensive play next season, the Broncos won't overachieve the way they did this year. Their lack of talent was evident in their cardboard cutout game-plans that teams figured out far too quickly. Here's hoping Mcdaniel's opens the playbook up a little bit more next season for Orton or Quinn, whoever wins the starting position during training camp.
Let's hear it Broncos fans, this will be my final mock before the draft so I wish each and every one of you a good draft and hope your teams make the right decision.
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