There are a lot of moving parts in the background of this one, so allow me to explain a bit.
Yes, the Broncos could (and maybe should) use their top two picks on offensive players.
I don’t think there’s any doubt about the fact that Denver can and should spend primary free agency assets on the defensive side of the ball. At least until roster cuts come down, the defensive side of the ball appears to be the clear strength of 2020 free agency. The Broncos would be wise to not only invest in their own players on that side of the ball, but perhaps look outside of Denver for their top free agency signings in 2020 on defense.
Yes, this move could involve a trade up.
We’ve seen the Broncos play the board perfectly the past couple of years. They’ve not been over-aggressive and it’s resulted in some really good draft picks.
As a matter of fact, the Broncos sat back and waited and still managed to get Courtland Sutton in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft when he was expected to go in the middle of the first round that year. They also got Drew Lock at pick 42 overall when he could have easily been their pick at 10 overall.
The draft is unpredictable. This could happen.
The draft is unpredictable and doesn’t always go the way you think. A player like Shenault, who has top 20 talent, could just as easily fall to the second round as he could be picked in the top 20 picks.
Injury history is one concern for him, and his production this year as a junior was not quite the other-worldly production everyone anticipated after a big-time breakout year as a sophomore.
Shenault is very physically gifted and can help an offense in a variety of ways, but he does run a limited route tree and had a lot of his production on fabricated touches.
With that said, I think there’s a distinct place for that in Denver’s offense right now.
Rich Scangarello utilizes pre-snap motion a lot, and the Broncos rely heavily on misdirection to disguise what they’re actually trying to do on a given play.
Shenault is sort of the ultimate weapon in that regard and if the Broncos aren’t able to secure someone like Jerry Jeudy, CeeDee Lamb, or Henry Ruggs, Shenault could be a great consolation prize.
He’s such a fascinating playmaker in space, he’s physical, he’s got good speed, he can track the ball well, and he can create offense without needing to run an expansive route tree. He will be able to beat press coverage and get open quick enough in one-on-one situations and help open things up for guys like Courtland Sutton and Noah Fant.
One reason I think it’s such an important position for the Broncos to address is the fact that with a player like Shenault added to the mix, now all of a sudden the Broncos can force teams to pick their poison. This kind of pick would make Denver’s offense tough to defend against if Lock is hitting throws.