If you subscribe to the Denver Post's Broncos-related email list, your inbox received this gem of a message on Monday evening:
Breaking News: John Elway says Broncos could trade up or down in NFL draft
Thanks, guys. In other news, the team might also use their pick at #31 (if someone takes an unexpected tumble, as Sly Williams did), or even let the clock run out so that Seattle can again show how much faster they are.
Now, here's what Elway actually said (transcript, video).
As one might have expected, there wasn't much to it.
Nate Irving isn't a three-down linebacker, the draft is loaded at wide receiver, and Orlando Franklin's position isn't set. Presumably for laughs, the Duke added that 200-pound safety T.J. Ward might play some nickel linebacker.
But according to Mike Klis, the Broncos will try to move into the middle third of Thursday's first round, ostensibly to take a corner or middle linebacker. He suggests they'd need to part with their second-rounders in 2014 and 2015 (yikes), or their 2015 first-rounder to do so.
Why would they be willing to pay such a heavy premium?
Per Klis, the team expects their net free agency losses to provide them with as many as four compensatory picks next year.
If their calculations are on point, then that's 11 draft choices for a team that might still have Peyton Manning, and might still be an overdog.
Unless many things goes horribly wrong in 2014 (never say never), 11 draft choices are not making the 2015 roster. So, perhaps that's the thinking.
Anyway, the players that Klis says Denver would move up from #31 to select are corners Justin Gilbert, Darqueze Dennard, Kyle Fuller, and linebackers C.J. Mosley and some dude named Ryan Lazier. (Presumably, he meant OSU's Ryan Shazier. The irony, of course, is that nobody is lazier than the DP's fact checkers, amirite?)
Klis adds that Xavier Su'a-Filo or Weston Richburg (more on him here from Troy Renck) are potential targets at #31 or later (with a move down).
So, does there figure to be any truth in this report, or is it pure smoke emanating from Dove Valley?
Obviously, it's impossible to say, but it shouldn't be dismissed.
It's beyond obvious that any of these players would fit Denver's needs, and they have shown interest and/or been linked with each and every one of them.
Putting out word that you're willing to move up for as many as five players isn't exactly showing your cards.