The Denver Broncos get the fastest player in the 2020 NFL Draft in Mel Kiper Jr.’s first-round mock draft at ESPN, upgrading on offense.
ESPN’s longtime NFL Draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. has put together a mock draft, and considering the amount of time he’s spent in the industry and the scouts and NFL personnel he’s become familiar with, it stands to reason that his mock drafts are worth putting some stock into. For Broncos fans, Kiper’s pick is a familiar name.
Although Kiper’s takes are not for everyone these days, his pick for the Broncos in this mock draft — Alabama WR Henry Ruggs III — is one that would have just about all of Broncos Country dancing a jig on draft night.
The Broncos are slowly but surely assembling a nice core of talent offensively, but speed is one element they are missing currently at the wide receiver position.
Ruggs is an over-correction in the best way.
Ruggs can apparently run the 40-yard dash in under 4.3 seconds, and will likely challenge for the NFL Scouting Combine record in February. Rumor has it, he’s run a 4.25 before, and we all know he’s going to be training for speed as every .01 on that 40-time could mean millions in his bank account.
Ruggs is not just a great sprinter, however. He’s a physical football player and a tremendous athlete who is a threat every time the football goes his way. He can score from anywhere on the field and as much as Broncos fans can’t stand the Kansas City Chiefs, Ruggs’ skillset is reminiscent of Tyreek Hill’s.
What’s so impressive about guys like Ruggs and Hill is not just that they have elite sprinter’s speed, but they can play fast all the time. Ruggs’ play speed is ridiculous and he does more than just run deep routes.
All three of Alabama’s elite trio of receivers this past year proved they can play inside or outside at the next level, and while Ruggs is sometimes victim to press coverage, defensive backs don’t dare take many risks with him in press coverage because if he gets by you, well it’s game over.
We’ll do more in-depth scouting on Ruggs as we move closer to the 2020 NFL Draft, but many consider him to be a top three receiver in this class along with his teammate Jerry Jeudy and Oklahoma’s CeeDee Lamb.
If he runs as fast as people say he will, there’s a good chance we won’t see him on the board at pick number 15, but luckily for the Broncos, this draft is exceptionally deep at receiver so even if they were only able to get one of the top three guys on their board (or four or five or six) it would almost be like getting your WR1 in any other draft class.
Ruggs is not the only option, but he’s certainly the fastest guy in this class and would add another dimension to Denver’s offense.