The Broncos had to fight to move up in the 2nd round of the 2014 NFL Draft to snag Indiana wide receiver Cody Latimer, but he’s not the only receiver whose services they competed for on draft weekend.As the draft concluded, the Broncos and a few other teams started contacting Isaiah Burse, the slot receiver and punt returner at Fresno State which just had big name players like Davante Adams and Derek Carr picked in the 2nd round of the draft.
Burse was undrafted, and there are reasons for it. At just 5’10″ 188 pounds, Burse managed to run a 40 time of just under 4.6 seconds, and he barely topped 1,000 yards this past year as a senior for the Bulldogs.
But the Broncos and other teams saw the production was there, and the potential is great.
Burse has phenomenal quickness, ball skills, and an ability to make plays after the catch or in space that not a lot of college players possess. He doesn’t have the deep speed you’d expect from someone at his size, and while the Broncos got used to the electrifying speed that the diminutive Trindon Holliday possessed, they could get used to a guy like Burse who is a more natural returner, and someone who can consistently make big plays without the constant fear of muffing punts or fumbling the football.
And as I mentioned, the Broncos actually competed for Burse’s services. He received the highest signing bonus of any other Broncos undrafted free agent, and told reporters at Broncos rookie camp how the team really liked his return ability.
And that’s exactly how I believe Burse can have a more immediate impact than the guy the Broncos traded up in the second round to get — Cody Latimer.
Punt returner was one of the few positions on the Broncos roster that somebody could lose, because even as of the Super Bowl, literally no one had a hold on it. This is a position for someone to come in and take, and the Broncos not only hand-picked their guy, they fought for him.