The 2024 NFL Draft is not on the radar of most NFL fans, especially with the entire 2023 season still to play. But drafting players and speculating as to which superstars at the college level will go to which teams never really stops.
Charlie Campbell, the Senior Draft Analyst over at Walter Football, doesn't seem to think much of the 2023 Broncos. In fact, in his most recently updated mock draft, he has the Broncos making their first-round pick at No. 3 overall.
The only time the Broncos have ever been worse than that was in 2010, giving them the No. 2 overall pick in 2011, which they used to take Von Miller.
But in this mock draft, the Broncos tab North Carolina quarterback Drake Maye as the leader of the offense going forward.
This mock, if it were to come true, would mean many things and none of them would be particularly good.
The only teams that Campbell has as worse than the Broncos, at least in terms of win-loss records, are the Arizona Cardinals and their main rival, the Las Vegas Raiders. With the No. 1 overall pick, the Raiders take last year's Heisman Trophy winner, Caleb Williams.
After the Cardinals take Florida State edge rusher Jared Verse at No. 3, the Broncos select Maye. This would not only mean that the Broncos had a miserable 2023 season, but they would also be moving on from Russell Wilson, forcing them to eat a ton of dead money on the salary cap.
Maye is an impressive prospect, to be sure. In his sophomore season last year, Maye took over as the team's starting quarterback after Sam Howell went to the NFL. He put forth a tremendous season, completing 66 percent of his passes for 4,321 yards with 38 touchdowns to just seven interceptions.
When watching Maye, who is 6-foot-4 and 220 pounds, the arm talent is obvious. He can make every throw there is and the ability to become a franchise quarterback for many years is obvious. He is the kind of player a coach like Sean Payton could mold into a perfect professional quarterback by refining his mechanics and footwork.
From that perspective, this would be an exciting pick. But at this time, in the summer of 2023, a pick like this will be met with a bittersweet reaction at absolute best because fans are still going to want to see Wilson turn things around and lead the Broncos into the postseason.