We'll do our best to track the Broncos' pre-draft meetings and visits. If you see anyone missing, please drop us an email with a source!
Happy Tuesday, friends. We've predictably seen some early commentary about distractions, vis-a-vis Michael Sam joining an NFL football team. We've also seen it compared to the Tim Tebow effect, but having lived through that era, I'm going to say that there's no comparison.
Sam will surely draw some extra media attention, but it won't be a lasting story.
As I heard Rich Gannon say on the radio the other day, once the media has asked Sam's 52 teammates how they feel about having a gay teammate, there's no more story to be had. Everybody can just forget about it, at that point, and get on with the business of playing football. Then, the guy will either be a good player, or not, but he'll have a chance to prove himself based on his play.
The 2014 NFL Draft will take place May 8-10 at Radio City Music Hall in NYC.
Denver currently has its full complement of picks, and will select 31st in each round.
Following their embarrassing loss in SB 48, the Broncos will pick 31st in each round of the 2014 NFL Draft.
For the first time since we can recall, Denver heads into the offseason with a full complement of picks. In fact, the Broncos have not (yet) dealt away any of their future picks.
And after a 2013 Draft that provided very little impact in year one, perhaps they'll even use one of those picks to find a better option than Paris Lenon or Keith Brooking at middle linebacker?
Anyone who's been reading this site for very long should know we're all big fans of the work done by Doug Farrar at Shutdown Corner, and by Greg Cosell at NFL Films. Cosell, in particular, is quite the film junkie, so his opinions tend to carry more weight with us than do those of most NFL analysts.
Over the past month or so, Farrar and Cosell have been devoting their podcasts to draft reviews; today, they're covering the AFCW teams.
Normally, we'd just write a line or two and recommend you listen to the podcast, but there's enough useful information that we've transcribed all of what we thought were Cosell's salient points regarding Denver's 2013 draftees. Here's what Cosell had to say, plus a few stray comments from Farrar:
The Cowboys under Jerry Jones haven't exactly been praised for their recent draft classes, especially their most recent one.
If there is one thing that Jones & Co. are good at when it comes to the draft, though, it's sharing their entire board with the public.
For the second time in four years, Jerrah gave an interview in front of Dallas's draft board, and the Blogging the Boys guys have done the yeomanlike work of reconstructing the whole thing from screenshots for the rest of us to enjoy.
We shouldn't assume this was accidental on the Cowboys' part, because according to their board, they did a stellar job in April, nabbing six players with third-round grades or better in the first five rounds.
Of more interest to us, though, is what they thought of the players taken by Denver. Let's take a peek:
For the coaching staff, it was their first on-field look at the Broncos' draftees and undrafted free agent signings, along with a trio of players invited for an extended tryout.
According to Mike Klis, two of those invitees were impressive enough that they will be signed - CSU DE Lanston Tanyi, and UCLA LB Damien Holmes.
Updated 9:29pm ET
Throughout the offseason, we've heard from Johns Elway and Fox that the Broncos plan to have Nate Irving, Steven Johnson, and Stewart Bradley compete for the starting middle linebacker job.
As always, actions speak louder than words.
So does Denver's decision not to draft an inside linebacker (they instead signed CU's Doug Rippy and BYU's Uona Kaveinga as undrafted rookies) mean they're happy with what they've got?
With the 173rd pick in the 2013 Draft, the Broncos took Virginia Tech tackle Vinston Painter. Three picks later, the Texans took tackle David Quessenberry. Both players have positional flexibility and might play guard in the NFL. Each was converted from another position - Painter from defensive tackle, and Quessenberry from tight end.
I’ve read in a couple of articles the idea that Painter only has a single year of offensive line work to point to, but it’s not quite true. To clarify how much experience Painter has there, consider this:
Painter, who is the cousin of Virginia Tech receiver Randall Dunn, earned first-team All-Tidewater and first-team All-Eastern District honors on the offensive line as both a junior and senior at Maury High. He was also was second-team all-district as a defensive tackle. Painter actually began his Virginia Tech career at defensive tackle, as he worked there during the fall of his redshirt season (2009), before he moved to offensive tackle for spring practice.
Doc Ponderosa and I were talking about the two known instances in Denver’s draft where a medical issue came into play last week - those of Eddie Lacy and Quanterus Smith. I thought I’d share with you what came up.
Sunday brought word that the Steelers and several other teams, including potentially the Broncos, passed on the Alabama running back due to concerns regarding a fused toe.
Doc P has found the fusion of the great toe to be a variable problem, which matches my own experience. Some people are greatly hampered by it, while others seem to handle it fairly well. Over time, though, the changes in balance created by it can hinder a player and can create or contribute to other injuries. Even if it’s not bothersome in itself, the changes in posture, gait, and stride that result from it are cumulative; a lot of people eventually develop low back, knee, and/or ankle issues as a result.