During his standup routine years ago, comedian Steve Martin described his brief football playing days as one which the coaches did not appreciate him calling his own plays. Martin joked, “I used to like to punt on first down”.
Well, some fans are going to be as upset as Martin’s coaches because I think the Denver Broncos and John Elway are punting on the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft and trading back for additional picks. The caveat is finding a trade partner because I think many teams selecting after the top 20 picks or so feel the same. However, Elway has shown a proclivity for swinging these types of deals. I think Elway’s own words made it fairly easy to ascertain the move backward.
In a press conference this past Monday at Dove Valley, Elway was frank about how top-heavy the first round is.
“Since I’ve been doing this in the past three years, there’s not 32 first round greats.”
He went on to say that he felt there were between 18 and 22 true first round picks. As I and others have noted, this is a deep draft in specific areas of need for Denver so it is an opportunity to grab an extra pick or two and add some quality depth. Elway tipped his hand a bit by saying,
“We also think with this years draft, as I’ve said, we don’t look at it as if there’s a ton of impact players but there’s a lot of depth to it and a lot of good football players.”
Now, the coup de grace to my backward thinking:
“Well if you look at our picks, we got (Derek) Wolfe in the second round and (Brock) Osweiler in the second round last year. And then Raheem Moore and (Orlando) Franklin in the second round, so those four have been solid picks for us in the second round,” Elway said.
So I have presented the evidence and I think it’s pretty clear that if Broncos’ fans are anticipating some chatter about the newest Bronco by the water cooler on Friday morning, they should skip the water cooler and head for the coffee pot.
Oh, and who do I think will be the Broncos’ first pick in the second of the draft, you ask? I believe Denver will trade with the Jacksonville Jaguars back to the 33rd pick and select DE Margus Hunt from SMU. If you’ve read my stuff previously, this should be of no surprise.