Denver Broncos need to sign an inside linebacker for 2022

Denver Broncos linebacker Josey Jewell. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Denver Broncos linebacker Josey Jewell. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports /

Perhaps the most obvious weakness left on the Denver Broncos roster is at inside linebacker. Who could the team sign for 2022 and perhaps beyond?

After the free agency and the draft, the Denver Broncos’ roster is all but set.  The team is strong throughout, and with their current players, will be a huge contender in the AFC.

However, there is one hole that I think stands out from the rest, and that is at inside linebacker.

Josey Jewell was re-signed, so he is starting at one of the ILB spots, but the other spot does have an opening, and we could expect both Alex Singleton and Jonas Griffith to compete for that spot.

Baron Browning probably won’t spend his full playing time coming off the edge, so he would probably play ILB at some point, but the team could use another veteran addition to this room.  Alex Singleton is not good, and Griffith has very little starting experience.

Adding a veteran to this room would ensure that the linebackers are able to stay on par with the rest of the position groups on the defense, which are very strong.

Since George Paton has put in some work rebuilding the front seven and re-tooling the secondary, it would make little sense to me that he would roll into week one with this current ILB core.

I think it makes sense to add a quality veteran, because Denver is often known for having a strong defense, and with the defensive additions made this offseason, it’s clear that the team will again sport a strong defense.

With that being the case, why would they leave a hole at ILB, which seems to be not totally impossible to fill with a body?

Anthony Barr is an obvious answer here.  He was drafted by the Vikings when George Paton was in their front office.

Kwon Alexander is another talented inside linebacker.  He’s struggled with injuries but is still under 30 and has a Pro Bowl under his belt.

The team could elect to bring back Alexander Johnson or sign Anthony Hitchens, who was released by the Chiefs.

Could former Bronco Danny Trevathan be an option?  What about Alec Ogletree?  Perhaps Joe Schobert?

You see, there is a plethora of quality inside linebackers that are still looking for teams.

None of them are exactly old, so age shouldn’t be a deterrent.

I would think that as the teams get further into offseason activities, they might consider adding another body into this group.

I would personally hate to see the team enter the season with their current group and quickly find that this unit is too much of a liability.

Depending on who you talk to, inside linebackers don’t exactly carry the importance in the modern-day NFL.

Both Super Bowl teams had below-average inside linebacking units.

However, the Rams signed future Hall of Famer Bobby Wagner, so it’s clear they were looking to upgrade.

I would also point to some of the top defenses in the NFL this season.  One of the common themes with these units was that they had really solid inside linebackers, like the 49ers, Colts, and Bills, who all sported top-shelf defenses.

In reality, the inside linebacker position is still important, and the Denver Broncos need to sign a veteran in this group for 2022.

My picks: Kwon Alexander or Anthony Barr or Alexander Johnson