Ranking every No. 12 overall draft pick in Denver Broncos history

The Denver Broncos have had the No. 12 overall pick in the draft three other times before.
Jan 12, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos running back Knowshon Moreno (27) celebrates his
Jan 12, 2014; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos running back Knowshon Moreno (27) celebrates his / Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Broncos hold the No. 12 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft. The draft can be a total crapshoot and despite having a relatively high pick, there are no guarantees as to the quality of player that the team will land.

It remains to be seen if the Broncos will make a choice at No. 12 this year as there have been quite a few predictions that the team will make a trade, whether it be up for a quarterback or down to gain more capital.

In team history, the Broncos have had the No. 12 overall pick in the first round three other times, including in back-to-back years. What they have gotten has been a mixed bag and here, we rank them in terms of what they were able to accomplish with the team.

3. Marv Montgomery, OT, USC (1971)

Marv Montgomery was a dominant offensive lineman in college at one of the most prestigious programs in the country at USC. The Broncos felt that they had landed one of the best players in the draft with this pick.

But his career in Denver was mostly non-descript and marred by injuries. He spent six seasons with the Broncos and only made 32 starts for the team. His time with the team left a sour taste in his mouth for quite some time, but this 2010 article with The Denver Post showed that he was able to overcome that.

2. Knowshon Moreno, RB, Georgia (2009)

This was the first draft pick ever made by new head coach Josh McDaniels, and it was a questionable one even at the time. Knowshon Moreno was the first running back off the board in 2009 and he remains the last running back the Broncos drafted in the first round.

Moreno had a solid rookie season with 947 yards rushing and seven touchdowns but his next three seasons were pretty average. He tore his ACL in 2011 and finished with just 179 yards on the ground that year. But in 2013, playing alongside Peyton Manning, Moreno had the best year of his career by far.

That season, he rushed for over 1,000 yards and scored 10 touchdowns. He also caught 60 passes for another 548 yards and three touchdowns. He looked like a great dual-threat player moving forward for a team that reached the Super Bowl that year, but the Broncos chose not to re-sign him that following offseason.

He signed a one-year deal with the Miami Dolphins and played in just three games before again suffering an ACL tear. This injury not only ended his 2014 season but also led to the end of his career.

1. Ryan Clady, OT, Boise State (2008)

The year before the Broncos selected Moreno at No. 12, they found Ryan Clady out of Boise State in that same slot. He is easily the best player on this list. Clady is behind only Gary Zimmerman as the next best offensive tackle in Broncos history.

If not for injuries, Clady may have a case for the Pro Football Hall of Fame as he was truly one of the best offensive tackles of his era. In eight seasons with the team, he was selected to four Pro Bowls and he was named to the All-Pro First Team twice.

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Clady was able to help the team reach its ultimate goal, winning Super Bowl 50 and getting that elusive Super Bowl ring in his final season with the team.