What we learned: John Elway pre-draft press conference
What did we learn from John Elway’s annual pre-draft press conference? As you might expect, not much, with a few nuggets…
What did we learn from John Elway’s pre-draft press conference?
As you may expect, the Denver Broncos general manager didn’t give a whole lot of information away.
With that said, Elway is always good for an interesting nugget or two or three, and we’ve got them for you here.
Case Keenum is the starter
Elway reiterated what he’d already said previously this offseason, which is that Case Keenum is the team’s starting quarterback.
This is no shocker.
The Broncos feel that Keenum’s leadership and credibility coming off of a very good season with the Vikings in 2017 can help elevate this team back to where it belongs — postseason play.
The Broncos are open to all options
Though the headlines are going to say the Broncos are looking to trade down, or are open to trading down, or that their pick is ‘for sale’ as Adam Schefter put it, Elway made it a point to be politically correct and state that the Broncos are interested in every option, whether that’s trading up, down, or staying put.
The two likeliest options, at this point, seem to be trading down or staying put, but Elway also said the team has yet to go through all of the scenarios, which will happen on Monday.
There’s a ‘good’ running back on the way
Elway may have given a slight hint that the Broncos will draft a running back somewhat early…
I’ll leave you all to speculate, but the Broncos do like Saquon Barkley, and they had Ronald Jones II and Rashaad Penny in for pre-draft visits. Those players are all expected to be gone in the top three rounds.
Four QBs have a 1st round grade
If there’s a big run on quarterbacks in this draft past the top four, you can pretty much count the Broncos out of it.
Elway stated that the Broncos have just four quarterbacks with a first round grade, and though he didn’t specify which ones, you can reasonably assume based on the Broncos’ pre-draft activity that those players are Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, Josh Allen, and Baker Mayfield.
Elway prefers the cerebral QB now
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This may have been Elway’s most telling statement of the day. This would seem to put Josh Allen on the outside looking in of the Broncos’ preferred quarterbacks, and Baker Mayfield or Josh Rosen inside.
Sam Darnold could be lumped in with the cerebral group as well.
This does not mean Josh Allen is not a smart player. He’s got strong intangible qualities, but he’s much more about the arm than he is about winning mentally at this point. At least, in my opinion he is.
To me, this comment may have put Josh Rosen in the lead for the Broncos as far as their top targets at quarterback, though Baker Mayfield is able to quickly learn and adapt to new offensive concepts.
Ultimately, Elway didn’t really give anything major away, unless this final statement about preferring cerebral quarterbacks to strong-armed guys proves prophetic and the Broncos draft someone like Rosen or Mayfield at five overall.