John Elway poses with two of his nine 2011 draft picks. (Ed Andrieski/AP)

Denver Broncos 2011 Draft Grade

What a draft for the Denver Broncos.

In John Elway and John Fox’s first draft with the orange and blue, it’s clear that operation Orange Crush is underway.

Here’s a quick breakdown of who the Broncos selected before you grade this draft.

The Broncos had a total of nine picks, and they loaded up defense with six players coming from that side of the ball. They picked up four linebackers, two safeties, two tight ends, and one tackle.

LB Von Miller (Texas A&M): 1st round (2nd overall) – 6’3”, 246 lbs. In four years at A&M, had 178 total tackles and 32 sacks. He played the 3-4 in college, but John Fox believes he can easily transition to the 4-3 because of his natural football ability and knowledge. A Miller-Dumervil pairing in Denver has fans excited.

S Rahim Moore (UCLA): 2nd round (45th overall) – 6’0”, 202 lbs. Moore had 77 tackles and 1 INT in 2010, but tallied 10 INTs in 2009. He tries to pattern his game after Ed Reed. Brian Dawkins will be a great resource for this great young safety.

T Orlando Franklin (Miami): 2nd round (46th overall) – 6’7”, 316 lbs. Franklin has Ryan Clady-like size and he can play anywhere on the offensive line.

LB Nate Irving (NC State): 3rd round (67th overall) – 6’1”, 230 lbs. Irving survived a deadly car crash in 2009 only to come back and record 89 tackles, 7 sacks, and 3 forced fumbles. The heart that this kid has can’t be matched.

S Quinton Carter (Oklahoma): 4th round (108th overall) – 6’1”, 200lbs. Come from an established Sooner program. Had 96 tackles and 4 INTs in 2010. The Broncos are looking to inject some youth into the safety position.

TE Julius Thomas (Portland State): 4th round (129th overall) – 6’5”, 246 lbs. Good size but was a basketball player until his senior year in college. Caught 29 passes for 453 yards, and had two touchdown in 2010. The Broncos are hoping for a Tony Gonzalez or Antonio Gates out of this guy.

LB Mike Mohamed (California): 6th round (189th overall) – 6’3”, 239 lbs. Had 105 tackles, 2 sacks, 1 forced fumble, and 3 INTs in his junior year. A well-rounded guy at the linebacker position.

TE Virgil Green (Nevada): 7th round (204th overall) – 6’3”, 249 lbs. Green was a solid tight end on a potent offense. He had 35 receptions for 515 yards, and 5 TDs his senior season. He will compete with Thomas for a spot.

LB Jeremy Beal (Oklahoma): 7th round (247th overall) – 6’2”, 262 lbs. Beal will join former Sooner teammate Quinton Carter in Denver as a member of this year’s rookie class. Beal comes from a 3-4 defense and he’s a consistant player. In his career at OU, he had 213 tackles, 28 sacks, 5 forced fumbles, and 1 INT. 

What grade would you give the Denver Broncos in the 2011 NFL Draft?

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