Since John Elway came on board in Denver, the quarterback position has been of paramount importance. In addition to signing the biggest free agent in professional sports history, Manning drafted an heir to the throne all in 2012 with the signing of Peyton Manning and the selection of Brock Osweiler.
After the way the Broncos treated their pre-draft time with Osweiler, it was clear to most that they felt the same way about Miami (OH) quarterback Zac Dysert, who was a seventh round pick of the team in 2013 after many projected he would go easily in the fourth or fifth round.
The Broncos aren’t done looking at quarterbacks, either. After some rumors that they sent coaches to the pro day of Wyoming’s Brett Smith and had him for a private workout, the list of quarterbacks has grown and now includes another Miami quarterback, this one from Florida.
Miami’s Stephen Morris is a bit of a mystery for many in this year’s draft. There are plenty of big name college quarterbacks who are being ranked pretty low, and Morris is no exception. With guys like Georgia’s Aaron Murray projected to go on the third day, there’s no question that a player with the inconsistency and injuries of Morris is going to fall a bit.
Right now, most people consider Morris a late round pick or priority free agent, and the Broncos are making sure to put a word in in case he’s not the best player on their board with one of their final picks, and they come calling after the draft.
Morris is a polarizing prospect. So polarizing that the good folks at Draft Breakdown have cut up 15 of his games over the last two years. The common thread is this — Morris is capable of showing first round skills at times. He is an extremely fluid athlete with excellent speed for the position (4.63), adequate size (6’2″ 213 pounds), and one of the strongest arms in the draft.
And when I say that, I don’t take it lightly. Morris can sling it but that is not only one of his biggest strengths, it’s something that causes him a bit of trouble. Morris can tend to sail some balls or get lazy with his placement, resulting in a completion percentage well under 60 percent.
That is a problematic number for a draftable quarterback, but it’s not the end of the story for Morris. This is the type of athlete that is starting to take over the NFL at the QB position. Guys are bigger, faster, have stronger arms, and can hurt you in a variety of ways. The Broncos obviously believe in Brock Osweiler but aren’t going to hand him anything.
Adding a player like a Brett Smith or a Stephen Morris is a wise move for Denver to make sure they have as many young arms out there with experience and having learned from Peyton Manning as possible whenever he decides to let the game go.