Denver Broncos mock draft with a trade up scenario in round 2
The Denver Broncos should have at least one or two new players a week from the time you're reading this post. The 2023 NFL Draft is fast-approaching and scenarios are flying around all over the place. What are the Broncos going to do? Are they going to stay put at picks 67 and 68?
I'm not sold that will be the case. Sean Payton's history is such that if the team doesn't trade up at least one time, you should be surprised. Then again, GM George Paton's history is that if the Broncos don't trade down at least once, you should be surprised. Ultimately, it has everything to do with the players being targeted. The Broncos are flexible, even with just five picks in this class.
How could they move up? What would be a fair trade? How could they move up and still keep five picks? Let's explore a scenario...
Denver Broncos mock draft: Trading up into the 2nd round
Round 2, pick 43: Luke Musgrave, TE, Oregon State
Just so we can see how realistic trading up into the top 10-12 picks of the second round of the NFL Draft is, the Broncos have an extra selection in round 3 of the 2024 NFL Draft (as well as in rounds 4-5) that they could utilize to trade up. In this scenario, the Jets recoup a third-round pick which they lost in the Elijah Moore trade, and also get some future draft capital out of the deal.
The Broncos moving up would be fascinating to see. What positions would they actually trade up for? I think the tight end position is as likely as any. We have seen the Broncos doing a lot of visits with tight ends in the weeks leading up to the 2023 NFL Draft, which could indicate they are really trying to differentiate guys at that position group.
Luke Musgrave is one of the players they've had in on a visit, and he is the nephew of former Broncos OC Bill Musgrave.
Why would the Broncos trade up for a tight end? People have been asking why this keeps getting suggested because the team has Greg Dulcich, Albert Okwuegbunam, and they signed Chris Manhertz in free agency. Not that you can poke holes in every position group, because that could ultimately cause you to think every position group is bad or an injury risk, but I think at tight end, it's pretty fair.
The Broncos do like Greg Dulcich. At least, last year they did. Dulcich had a solid rookie season despite only playing in 10 games, which is part of the equation here. Dulcich was limited due to a hamstring issue, and the Broncos are one hamstring tweak away from having arguably the least-threatening tight end duo in the league in Albert O. and Chris Manhertz.
Manhertz was brought in to block. If he catches any passes, that's just dandy. Okwuegbunam might be traded on Day 3 of the Draft. It wouldn't be shocking to see the Broncos trade up for someone like Musgrave and then move on from Albert O. later on.
At any rate, Musgrave is a guy who can do a little bit of everything at the TE position, which is not obviously Dulcich's strongsuit. Dulcich is a receiver at the position. GM George Paton did indicate that he was pleased with the progression they saw from Dulcich as a blocker last season, but asking him to play in line and block guys off the edge is not where he's most effective.
Using Dulcich in tandem with someone like Musgrave could set the Broncos up to have a very dynamic duo of tight ends for the future, with Chris Manhertz doing a lot of the thankless work. This kind of selection would just continue to fortify Sean Payton's desire for the team to be physical in the trenches. He's had great success drafting and developing tight ends through the years, so if the Broncos feel like Musgrave can be the next in line, they should move up to get him.