Broncos undrafted free agent ranked a top 5 group among all teams

Did the Broncos have one of the best undrafted free agent classes following the 2024 NFL Draft?
Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos / Ethan Miller/GettyImages

Denver Broncos rookie minicamp is getting closer, starting on Friday, May 10. Denver made seven selections during the 2024 NFL Draft, including first-round quarterback Bo Nix. Following the Draft, they signed 15 undrafted free agents. And this year's undrafted free agent class was a good one, following up a strong 2023 class.

Last year, the Broncos had a record of the most undrafted free agents making the 53-man roster. These players were OL Alex Palczewski, RB Jaleel McLaughlin, TE Nate Adkins, and EDGE Thomas Incoom. Palczewski was the only one who did not see action during the regular season due to injuries.

McLaughlin played in all 17 games and had 76 carries for 410 yards and a rushing touchdown, plus 31 receptions for 160 yards and two receiving touchdowns. Adkins was more of a blocking tight end, and saw the most action in special teams, but appeared in 10 games with four receptions for 22 yards. Incoom played in four games and had two tackles.

Denver has had multiple very successful undrafted free agents including Rod Smith, Chris Harris Jr., CJ Anderson, Phillip Lindsay, Ja'Quan McMillian, Lionel Taylor, Duke Ihenacho, and Rich Karlis, among others. The fact that they went undrafted does not mean that they are not good players or cannot make an NFL roster. You can definitely find hidden gems after the Draft, who can later have a big impact on the field.

Fantasy Pros analyst Thor Nystrom wrote an article ranking all 32 undrafted free agent classes. He had the Denver Broncos in the top five, specifically at five, just behind the Kansas City Chiefs, New York Jets, Minnesota Vikings, and Seattle Seahawks.

Before looking at what Nystrom mentions regarding the 2024 Denver Broncos UDFA class, let's look at who these 15 players are ...

  • RB Blake Watson, Memphis
  • OT Frank Crum, Wyoming
  • DB Omar Brown, Nebraska
  • LB Leville Bailey, Fresno State
  • TE Thomas Yassmin, Utah
  • DL Jordan Miller, SMU
  • WR BJ West, South Alabama
  • WR Lincoln Victor, Washington State
  • TE Dylan Leonard, Georgia Tech
  • DL Brandon Matterson, UTSA
  • DB Cam Allen, Purdue
  • EDGE Jaylon Allen, Memphis
  • LB Alec Mock, Air Force
  • DB Quinton Newsome, Nebraska
  • P Nik Constantinou, Texas A&M

Thor mentions three key names in this class: Frank Crum, Blake Watson, and Omar Brown, players who got a big contract, and even higher guarantees than guys drafted in the sixth and seventh rounds.

""All three should be considered front-runners at present to make the Week 1 roster. The Broncos are hoping that OL coach Zach Strief can turn OT Crum into a rosterable rookie, much like he did with Alex Palczewski last season. I’d argue that he has more to work with in Crum. Crum is a 6-foot-8 skyscraper with 98th-percentile RAS athleticism. The Broncos, who have not taken an OT in R1 since 2017 (Garett Bolles), need depth at that spot. RB Watson, a former WR who broke out after a shift to RB at Old Dominion, transferred up to Memphis hoping to continue the Tigers’ lineage of recent RB successes that included Tony Pollard, Kenneth Gainwell, Darrell Henderson and Antonio Gibson. He succeeded in that aim, posting 1,632 all-purpose yards with 17 TD last fall.""

Thor Nystrom

""That (Watson's success) was followed by a great week at the Shrine Game, and then a 4.39 forty at Memphis’ pro day after he was spurned from the NFL Combine. Watson, a skilled receiver, caught 90 balls over the last two seasons. He’s an air back who could absolutely win a platoon role. S Brown proved the concept at the FBS level after three strong seasons at Northern Iowa, earning honorable mention All-Big Ten honors in 2023. He has nickel/safety versatility.""

Thor Nystrom

The Denver Broncos could very well have another undrafted free agent (or two) make the roster in 2024.