Broncos Draft Recap 2022: Complete breakdown of Denver’s picks
We take an in-depth look at all nine of the Denver Broncos’ picks in the 2022 NFL Draft. What can we expect from these rookies?
The Denver Broncos’ 2022 NFL Draft class seems to be drawing mixed reviews, which is fascinating.
On the one hand, it’s understandable that many fans would be a little off-put by certain things the team didn’t do, or particular players they didn’t select.
On the other hand, the correct perspective is that the Denver Broncos and general manager George Paton absolutely aced this draft because they invested their top two picks in quarterback Russell Wilson.
No other team in the entire league invested their most important selections better than the Denver Broncos, who started off with five picks in the first three rounds before the trade to acquire Wilson.
But what about the picks themselves? How did George Paton and company do in their efforts to upgrade the roster around Wilson? That’s worth diving into.
Denver Broncos top pick: Nik Bonitto, EDGE, Oklahoma
For all of the grief I get for putting together a million mock draft scenarios that a lot of people consider to be pointless over the course of about five or six months, the fact that no player was predicted to land in Denver more than Nik Bonitto throughout mock draft season is fascinating.
This is a fit that you could almost see coming from a mile away.
The Broncos traded Von Miller for the Rams’ second and third-round picks in this draft, and with the top selection they received from Los Angeles, they took Bonitto, whose physical and athletic profile is at least somewhat comparable to that of Von Miller coming out of Texas A&M back in 2011.
Miller was obviously much more dynamic overall, but just like Miller, Bonitto has an incredible first step. In fact, his 10-yard split of 1.53 seconds is faster than Miller’s 1.62.
Bonitto’s unreal athleticism pops off the tape when you watch him play. He’s a versatile athlete with the ability to pin his ears back and rush the passer, but he was used a ton at Oklahoma as QB spy as well as in coverage.
Watching even a handful of Oklahoma games, you will quickly discover that when Bonitto is able to just time the snap and get after the quarterback, tackles can’t get their hands on him cleanly. He has good bend around the edge and instinctively looks to pop the ball loose.
He’s not a true edge setter at this point but you can see the flashes of ability to be a full-time edge setter when it comes to playing the run and staying disciplined instead of just trying to take the quickest path into the backfield as possible.
Overall, at pick number 64 in this draft, I think Bonitto is going to bring a presence off the edge immediately as a rookie and he is an NFL-ready pass rush specialist.
The fact that Elvis Dumervil announced this pick at the NFL Draft in Las Vegas gives this selection an even better vibe.