The Denver Broncos have selected Wake Forest LB Justin Strnad with the 178th overall pick of the 2020 NFL Draft. How does he fit? Let's take a look.
Day 3 of the 2020 NFL Draft is moving at warp speed. With two picks left for the Broncos to select (at the time of this writing), the team has quickly added explosive playmakers on offense and found some nice pieces to fill other holes in the roster.
While guys like Jerry Jeudy will have the lion's share of attention from this class, it's important to keep an eye on the guys that will come to the team later today. Sometimes, it's the guys that are taken later that eventually have the biggest return on investment. One such guy could be who the Broncos selected in the 5th round.
If you're not familiar with Justin Strnad and his skill set, here's a snippet of his scouting report from NFL.com.
Scouting report (By Lance Zierlein of NFL.com)
"He's built like a tall, puffed-up safety, but he also runs like one with the range to find play after play when he's kept clean. Strnad could have issues against downhill running attacks due to a lack of size and hand usage. He's an explosive athlete and aggressive striker, but big backs could wear him down on the pro level.
He has the twitch and burst to roam from sideline to sideline and should play faster and more efficiently as his recognition improves. He's an ascending playmaker whose athleticism, third-down talent and special-teams ability could make him a middle-round selection as a 4-3 WILL or 3-4 ILB if his medicals check out."
How he fits
While he has position versatility, it would appear that his best fit in Denver will be as an inside linebacker. With Todd Davis heading into a contract year, it was a wise move of the Broncos to find a potential replacement. This selection also allows Justin Hollins to focus more on the outside and use his abilities as a rusher instead of having to use him inside.
I expect Strnad to start out as a regular on Special teams and work his way into the defensive rotation from there.
The best teams are built on picks like this and I'm excited to see what Strnad to can for the Broncos. His impact may not be felt in 2020, but this could be a pick that we look back on a few years from now and wonder how he was still available in the 5th round.
He has all of the tools to develop into a good player in this league and we can only hope that he lives up to that potential.
Welcome to Denver, Justin!