UCLA QB Josh Rosen declares for the 2018 NFL Draft

PASADENA, CA - NOVEMBER 11: Josh Rosen /

UCLA Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen has decided to leave school early and enter the 2018 NFL Draft. Could he become a member of the Denver Broncos?

As we stated in our piece about Sam Darnold declaring for the 2018 NFL Draft, 2018 seems to be the year of the quarterback.

On the same day that Darnold declared for the 2018 NFL Draft, so did UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen.

Both players are likely to be top five selections, but almost assuredly won’t be getting out of the top 10 overall selections. The Denver Broncos, of course, hold the 10th overall pick in the draft.

Currently, my 2018 NFL Draft quarterback rankings look like this:

1. Sam Darnold, USC (RS Sophomore)
1a. Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma (Senior)
1b. Josh Rosen, UCLA (Junior)

I could make a case for all three of these guys to be the top overall pick in the draft, and I would take any one of them as the future of the Denver Broncos. Every one of them has significant strengths on the field and every one of them has something that needs to be worked on at the next level.

What makes Rosen a desirable prospect?

First and foremost, Rosen has been working from a pro-style offense so the transition to the professional game is going to be the easiest for him among this year’s crop of prospects. Rosen has maximized the talent around him at UCLA, but the biggest concerns about him right now are whether or not he’s going to be a distraction off the field (Rosen is a very opinionated kid, to be certain) and injuries.

Personally, I don’t view Rosen’s personal convictions and beliefs to be a distraction, but some (or many) NFL teams might. The interview process will be huge for Rosen, because there’s no doubt he knows football and there’s no doubt he has the ability to play at a high level in the NFL for as long as he wants to.

Right now, the assumption is that Rosen doesn’t want to play for the Cleveland Browns. He has not explicitly named the Browns as a team he doesn’t want to play for, but he did say this:

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Rumors right now are that Rosen would prefer to relocate further East and play for the New York Giants, who are in a state of transition as a franchise. If he were to go to New York, Rosen would have the benefit of playing with Odell Beckham Jr. and Evan Engram, an upgrade over anything he’s had in his time at UCLA to say the least.

It stands to reason that if Rosen is simply looking for a better situation than Cleveland, Denver would be a desirable destination for him. I think it’s funny that people will hammer this kid for not wanting to play for the Browns, but they won’t do the same for free agents in the NFL who are pretty explicitly chasing money.

Not everyone gets to pick who they play for coming into the NFL, but if you’re Rosen, why would you not at least throw this out there if you really don’t want to play for the Browns?

I personally don’t mind that, but not everyone will agree.

We’ll see how high Rosen will go in the draft, but my guess is he’s off the board within the first two picks.