The free agency excitement has died down a bit, as the Broncos haven’t made any moves in a week since signing Emmanuel Sanders. With limited cap space at this point, it’s no surprise the Broncos have let some things play out on the free agent market, but I don’t think John Elway and company are done building this team.
Either way, we now look most forward to the draft, where the Broncos have seven selections and a chance to further improve this team to get back into the Super Bowl. Here’s another mock draft. My last mock had the Broncos taking Ryan Shazier at pick #31, so I’ll go a different route to show some other possibilities.
1. First Round, 31st overall: David Yankey, OG, Stanford
The Broncos need to upgrade the interior of their offensive line with Zane Beadles gone, and Yankey would fill a huge hole. This is a guy who has played both tackle and guard over a very good collegiate career with the Cardinal. He’s powerful, athletic, versatile, and can start for a team that is expecting to return to the Super Bowl in 2014. He’s a plug-and-play guard that the Broncos could try out at right tackle if Orlando Franklin leaves in a year.
2. Second Round, 63rd overall: Chris Borland, LB, Wisconsin
Borland is a tackling machine and a tough as nails inside linebacker who can be the captain and quarterback of a defense. The Broncos need a guy who is able to make the calls defensively and be an all-around stud in the middle of the defense. With Borland, they’d have that and then some. He’s not an elite level athlete but he’s always in the right place and could rack up tackles like there’s no tomorrow.
3. Third Round, 95th overall: Rashaad Reynolds, CB, Oregon State
Physical corner with great ball skills who I’m really starting to take a liking to. Reynolds fits the profile of what the Broncos look for in a prospect in that he was a solid, consistent playmaker for three years at Oregon State, and showed improvement over the course of his career. He’s a good athlete who goes up and attacks the ball. Good, solid third round pick.
4. Fourth Round: Devin Street, WR, Pittsburgh
Solid all-around receiver who isn’t spectacular in any one area but can work underneath, out of the slot, and has reliable hands. Street is a guy who could wind up replacing Eric Decker a year down the road if Emmanuel Sanders moves into the slot.
5. Fifth Round: Tyler Larsen, C, Utah State
Larsen was a productive, solid starter for Utah State for a few years and his experience will be attractive to the Broncos. This type of move would either allow them to look at Larsen as a starter for 2014 and move Manny Ramirez to guard or he could back up Ramirez and be a versatile interior lineman.
6. Sixth Round: Jeff Janis, WR, Saginaw Valley State
Big, speedy small school prospect that the Broncos have been all over in the pre-draft process. Would be a nice sleeper pickup and a guy they could develop to be an eventual starter or key backup.
7. Seventh Round: Tajh Boyd, QB, Clemson
Boyd is a flier pick at this point in the draft. The Broncos and John Elway love adding QBs and this is a guy that could remind them a bit of a Russell Wilson type of player. If Boyd is still on the board in the 7th he’d be an intriguing option, if for no other reason than to try him out on the practice squad.