It’s never too early to start looking at the NFL Draft, and in case any of you are wondering, I also write for FanSided’s NFL Draft site NFLMocks.com. Shameless plug.
Anyway, since I do cover the draft, I want to make sure PO has some of the top Broncos draft coverage on the web, and scouting happens year-round. There are some prospects you’ll want to be keeping your eyes on as the season progresses, and based on some tendencies we’ve seen from the Broncos drafting in recent years, I thought this was an intriguing mock draft pick.
Rob Rang of CBS Sports’ draft coverage called NFL Draft Scout has out a mock draft right now and gives the Broncos Stanford defensive end Trent Murphy.
Murphy is a tough, versatile defender who actually plays a stand-up role for the Cardinal’s 3-4 defensive look, and he’s been pretty consistently productive for them.
Some of the notes I have on Murphy are “aggressive” and “high-motor” and coming from Stanford, he’s almost exactly what the Broncos are looking for in a defender.
We mentioned last weekend that the Broncos are probably going to be in the market for a DE come time for the draft and/or free agency, so that’s one of the main reasons I think this is an interesting pick. Murphy is a guy who can play multiple positions, he’s smart, and he has good instincts and aggressiveness.
In John Elway’s first three drafts with the team, the Broncos have taken a front seven player with their first pick (Von Miller, Derek Wolfe, Sylvester Williams) and truth be told, the team is still doing some work on that area of the team, as it was completely demolished and left bare (essentially) by the Josh McDaniels crew.
Anyway, the defensive line has become a strong unit for the Broncos but you can never have too many pass rushers and the Broncos could lose both Shaun Phillips and Robert Ayers after the season. It’s a safe bet to say they are going to be in the market for a DE this offseason, be it their own players or someone in the draft.
Here’s my report on Trent Murphy, a prospect I really like.
93 DE/OLB Trent Murphy (6’5″ 261 pounds, SENIOR)
Murphy was one of the more consistent hybrid linebackers in the country last year, regardless of conference. On a team that finished first in the country with 124 tackles for loss, he was the leader of the group with 18 of his own. Not only did he finish with 18 tackles for loss, but he made a total of 56 stops with 10 sacks and four passes broken up. Murphy is a very big rush linebacker for the Cardinal, which leads me to believe he may transition to playing some defensive end in the NFL. Watching some of his 2012 games, you probably won’t find many more 6’5″ 260 pound defenders who drop into coverage as much as this guy. He’s no lock-down cover linebacker by any means, but he is effective enough and his length allows him to knock down a lot of passes. In third down situations, Murphy has great explosiveness off the snap and gets to the quarterback with a strong, aggressive bull rush move. He doesn’t have elite bend around the edge but he gets there all the same. Heading into his senior season, he’s one of the top defenders in the nation. He looks like a potential first round pick if he can test well at the Combine, and watching him return a 40 yard INT for a touchdown against Washington, he may very well do that. This is an aggressive player who has a high motor and he has explosive ability off the edge.