Denver Broncos 2021 mock draft: QB in the first, then what?

Denver Broncos 2021 NFL Draft prospect Trey Lance. (Photo by Sam Wasson/Getty Images)
Denver Broncos 2021 NFL Draft prospect Trey Lance. (Photo by Sam Wasson/Getty Images) /

The 2021 NFL Draft is finally here, Denver Broncos fans. In three days’ time, we will know the future of the organization and what the first draft class in George Paton’s tenure as general manager will look like.

What will his first draft class look like?

We’ve been through pretty much every scenario possible at this point, haven’t we? We’ve looked at trading up. We’ve explored plenty of options with Paton trading down.

We’ve looked at options on offense and defense and even taken looks in the later rounds at guys who will make an impact on special teams like LSU’s Racey McMath.

Yes, that’s a real player, not someone created by Key and Peele.

It’s always a bittersweet day when the NFL Draft actually arrives because the anticipation of it is such a huge part of the fun. We only have hours to look at predictive scenarios anymore, so how about one last look at a Denver Broncos mock draft?

Have you read enough of those already?

I’ll keep this one short and to the point. It’s not likely that there will be no trades. We could see player trades like wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton, or depending on what happens we could see guys like Drew Lock on the move.

Let’s take a look at a seven-round mock draft for the Denver Broncos without trades for the time being and predict which players George Paton will take in his first draft.

1 (9th overall): Justin Fields, QB, Ohio State OR Trey Lance, QB, North Dakota State

In the end, I think George Paton will come away with a quarterback at the top of this draft class. Will he sit there and let the board fall to him? Maybe, but I also think there’s a chance he could trade up to the 6th overall pick with his pal Chris Grier in Miami.

The logic of the Broncos taking a quarterback with their top pick is too sound to ignore. They could undoubtedly go with an offensive tackle or linebacker in round one as well, but the wisest move with this top 10 pick, considering they probably won’t be in the same position next year, is a quarterback.

2 (40th overall): Jamin Davis, LB, Kentucky

One of the biggest, fastest, freakiest athletes at linebacker in this class, Jamin Davis is a guy I would love to see the Denver Broncos land as the future of the middle of their defense.

He’s instinctive in zone coverage, explosive, and he can be a weapon as a blitzer or in coverage. He could sneak into the first round, but the Denver Broncos would have tons of options here between Nick Bolton, Baron Browning, Jabril Cox, Zaven Collins, or a variety of other talented off-ball linebackers in this class.

3 (71st overall): Kenneth Gainwell, RB, Memphis

If the Denver Broncos draft a QB in the first round, I think adding a running back with one of their next two selections is just about a “must”. Kenneth Gainwell could be the best pass-catching back in this draft behind Najee Harris, and he is dynamic in that regard.

I love his potential as a three-down player with upside to become your featured back beyond 2021.

4 (114th overall): Brenden Jaimes, OL, Nebraska

This is the sweet spot for an offensive tackle for the Denver Broncos if that’s not their top pick. Jaimes is a good athlete who could wind up as a starter at a number of positions on the line. The Broncos draft him to replace the departed Elijah Wilkinson.

5 (152nd overall): Shaka Toney, EDGE, Penn State

Take a shot on day three of the draft on big-time pass rush potential. Shaka Toney is a guy who gives maximum effort and he was productive for the Nittany Lions off the edge.

7a (237th overall): Shemar Jean-Charles, DB, Appalachian State

This guy is going to come in and make your roster as a special teams player. The only first-team FBS All-American in Appalachian State history is slightly undersized but not under-productive.

7b (239th overall): Ihmir Smith-Marsette, WR, Iowa

It wouldn’t be a final Denver Broncos mock draft without an Iowa Hawkeyes player. Ihmir Smith-Marsette could be your DaeSean Hamilton replacement and eventually a replacement for Diontae Spencer.

7c (254th overall): Zach Davidson, TE, Central Missouri

This dude is amazing. He was not only a highly productive tight end, but was also the team’s punter. He’s 6-foot-7 with a massive catch radius and gives you another exciting option behind Noah Fant and Albert Okwuegbunam.