The Broncos have gone with Texas A&M LB Von Miller second overall, and here's our take:
Doc - Hi fives in Denver's war room! It's Miller Time! Now, fix that DL!
Doug - wow this kid is emotional about coming to Denver - love it. Plus, I like that he has cool glasses and is rocking the mesh hat - he'd fit right into my hood. So guys what do you think?
TJ - Once again the lesson for me is to trust Ted’s instincts - he had the Broncos taking Miller months ago. Miller is simply ridiculous on tape. He’s so fast off the edge he will give any tackle in the NFL fits.
Doug - Yeah when I read Ted first mention him as a Broncos pick three months ago, I had never even heard of the guy before - although that’s just my ignorance haha...
Doc - I love Miller - he earned that Butkus Award. I have concerns about the DT position, but I'm willing to wait and see how they deal with them. As far as Miller, he's excellent in the pass rush, has more moves than you commonly see in a college LB and is lightning fast. He's talented in coverage - it was his full-time responsibility his sophomore year in Joe Kines' 4-3 - and Denver needs that coverage skill. Also, Fox attacks the LB from the Sam position, so Miller will be opposite Doom much of the time. It's a great pick.
TJ - I originally thought that drafting a OLB from a 3-4 scheme was simply a misallocation of resources for a 4-3 defense like the Broncos’. However, this pick confirms what many of us were hoping--namely that the Broncos are going to be more like the Saints under Dennis Allen than the Panthers under John Fox. The Saints stack their linebackers at the line of scrimmage often when they overload blitz. This is a role Miller thrives in.
Doc - I think that TJ's ideas are excellent - and, I wouldn't be surprised if they move Miller or Doom around some to create those overload blitzes.
Ted - Yes, I think that he's the kind of weapon Allen can make great use of, all over the formation. I think he can cover a slot guy credibly, close out the edge in the running game, and be fearsome blitzing in any gap. Miller is the guy who frees up Allen to be as creative as his mind allows. This doesn’t have to be anything traditional, it's just get the great football player in a position to make big plays.
TJ - The one weakness that has been mentioned by some draft pundits is that Miller’s weak against the run, but I disagree with this assessment. He actually sheds blocks when he needs to and is often able to slip defenders to get to the ball carrier on the dive, which is something DJ Williams has never been adept at doing.
Ted - Miller can be destructive in any scheme, and what he now is is the centerpiece that the Broncos can feature on every play. When an offense has to scheme for you, it's a huge advantage.
TJ - The Broncos now have a new and interesting wrinkle: Elvis Dumervil and Miller attacking the quarterback at the same time while the Broncos bring six or seven defenders in the box. This could be scary. Miller’s quickness and speed ensure he’s an every down player; he can drop into coverage when needed. If you’re Dennis Allen, however, you’re going to find a way to get Miller in open space against 300-pound linemen. They simply can’t get their hands on him. I think the pick also shows us the Broncos think there will be a good DT left when they pick at the top of the 2nd round.
Ted - I really think an OLB can be used uniquely in an even front, and that blitzing the Sam is a really good idea. The Eagles and Giants have used it to great effect.
Doug - When's the last time we had a front-seven defender who had to be schemed when either passing or running? ie We can't run at this guy, and we have to have two guys block him if we're passing.
Ted - Yes, Doug, exactly. This is the guy you have to locate and account for. On passing downs, he probably helps Dumervil and Ayers get single-blocked. I see 40 sacks between those 3 guys.
Doc - True, Ted. His ability to collapse the pocket and create hurries sets up both Ayers and Doom. Good combination.
TJ - For Denver, Doug? I can't even remember a player. Maybe Mike Croel in his rookie year...but only then, and believe me that is a stretch too.
Ted - Croel... wow. That was a one-year wonder.
TJ - Yeah, that's why it was a huge stretch - Really, I can't think of a player like this we've had before. This guy is like Derrick Thomas.
Doug - So what do you guys think this means for DJ Williams? Von is definitely going to be the Sam?
Ted - I've never been a Williams-lover, but I suppose it means he's either the Mike or the Will, if he can beat out Woodyard, Mays, and Haggan. Hopefully, he can be the solid guy he's been at times.
Doc - DJ was always going to be Mike or Will - more likely Will, and I'd like to see an open competition between him and WW. The question of Sam has been wide open. We all, I think, agree on DJ's weaknesses.
TJ - I like WW, so I guess I should put him at Mike - even though I think they will put him at Will.
Doc - Woodyard played very well at LILB in the last 3 games of last season, but I worry about his ability to handle Mike for a full year, physically.
TJ - I'm with you Em - I'd rather have WW at Will. I think he's just quick and fits the Saints scheme better.
Doc - With work to improve the middle - DTs, even Mason Foster for Mike - Denver's D could take several giant steps up this weekend. Either draft Foster or use Joe Mays in the middle...
Ted - I like Mays... I think he has some Sam Mills in him.
Doc - Good comparison
TJ - I've been in favor of getting rid of DJ for a full year. Last year would have been a perfect time...
Doc - I think that Doug has pointed out that his contract makes getting rid of him difficult.
Doug - Yeah, you don't trade for players like DJ Williams and a contract like his - why would you? You simply wait for him to be cut, then you sign him to a cheaper deal. The only people who love DJ are Alfred Williams and one of the Goodmans, whoever was chatting up Woody last week.
Ted - Big Al sounds like he's a debacle as a radio guy. I'm glad I don't live close enough to hear it.
TJ - I hear Al every damn day - he's just a big lover of vets. Anyway, my point is that I would rather see WW, Miller, and Mays than DJ, Mays, Miller.