Ranking every single QB the Broncos have drafted with a first-round pick

The Broncos have had a couple of the best quarterbacks in NFL history on their team, but they didn't draft either one of them.

Aug 24, 2018; Landover, MD, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Paxton Lynch (12) attempts a pass in a preseason game.
Aug 24, 2018; Landover, MD, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Paxton Lynch (12) attempts a pass in a preseason game. / Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
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Tommy Maddox, Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos v Los Angeles Raiders / Focus On Sport/GettyImages

3. Tommy Maddox, 1992 (No. 25 overall)

This was a pick that no one understood as the Broncos decided to go quarterback in the first round in 1992, selecting Tommy Maddox out of UCLA. The Broncos were in existence for over 30 years before they ever drafted a QB in the first round, Maddox was the first.

But this pick serves as a reminder of the relationship between Elway and former head coach Dan Reeves, which always seemed a little bit rocky. This was the final wedge driven between them as Reeves was in favor of selecting Maddox and seemed to have a vision of soon replacing Elway.

Elway, feeling the pick should have been used on a piece to help the team chase a Super Bowl, was not thrilled with the decision to pick Maddox. But it would be Elway who won out over Reeves, who was fired following the 1992 season.

While Elway spent some time dealing with injuries during the 1992 season, Maddox was given a look by Reeves, making four starts. The Broncos lost all four of those games as Maddox threw five touchdown passes but also had nine interceptions.

The following season, with Reeves out of the picture and Wade Phillips as the head coach, Maddox stood on the sidelines carrying a clipboard all season and watching Elway. Prior to the 1994 season, the Broncos sent Maddox to the Los Angeles Rams for a fourth-round choice in 1995.

It was truly a wasted pick for the Broncos. Maddox did end up having success later in his career, helping the Los Angeles Xtreme win the first ever XFL Championship Game before returning to the NFL and having success with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

But his time in Denver is highly forgettable. Yet, he still wasn't as bad as Paxton Lynch.