First round, 15th overall (projected trade): Noah Fant, TE, Iowa
This pick could be a number of different players. Ole Miss wide receiver DK Metcalf is one of the most explosive athletes in the draft, TJ Hockenson is the most well-rounded tight end in the class, but Noah Fant is really something else.
Do the Broncos need to draft a tight end this high? I’m not so sure about that. What I am sure of is that the Broncos need to find ways to put points on the board and Fant can do that in a variety of ways.
This guy is the most dynamic tight end in the draft. Though he’s not as prolific in the blocking department as his teammate at Iowa, TJ Hockenson, Fant has all of the tools to be a top-flight tight end/offensive weapon in the NFL sooner rather than later.
The Broncos bought themselves at least a year with Jeff Heuerman coming back on a new contract, which could be two years if he continues to prove his worth. They have two other players who play the in-line tight end role well in Jake Butt and Troy Fumagalli.
Fant is a different breed of player altogether.
Fant can line up as a big slot, he can play in-line, or he can match up out wide. This would be like the Ravens’ move to get Mark Andrews last year, only Fant is a much better blocker than Andrews has ever been.
As a matter of fact, the Fant blocking slander must end. I watched every game of his at Iowa and I can tell you that at Iowa, if you play tight end, you don’t play unless you can block.
Fant would offer the Broncos maybe not the best in-line blocking tight end, but certainly the ability to block as a big slot and out on the perimeter, or out in space.
Most importantly, this guy is a freak of nature athletically who causes mismatches all over the field. He’s too big for corners, too fast for linebackers, and too much of both for safeties.
The Broncos need offensive playmakers. Don’t think of this pick as another tight end or a big receiver, but an offensive weapon who can line up pretty much anywhere and make plays.