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Broncos takeaways from our five first-round mock drafts

Zac Stevens Avatar
April 22, 2020

What comes just before the NFL Draft? Mock draft season.

Not only do analysts and reporters crank out mock draft after mock draft, but NFL teams internally take part in the fun of seeing how the draft will play out.

So DNVR joined in the frenzy too.

Over the past two weeks, the DNVR Broncos crew conducted five mock drafts to see the myriad of ways the draft could fall leading up to the Broncos’ first-round pick.

Here are the major takeaways for how the Broncos should approach their 15th-overall selection on Thursday night.


Along with the usual run on quarterbacks early in the draft, offensive linemen and wide receivers were hot commodities in the first half of Round 1.

This wasn’t a surprise as both positions are stacked with top talent, but the consistent run on each position was striking.

In all five mock drafts, the real run on receiver and tackle started at the eighth or ninth pick. In two mocks, once the first receiver or tackle was taken, each and every pick leading up to the Broncos pick at 15 was either a receiver or a tackle. In two others, all but one pick leading up to Denver’s selection at 15 was a tackle or receiver, while five of seven picks were those positions in another mock.

In three of the drafts, a top-three receiver — Jerry Jeudy, CeeDee Lamb and Henry Ruggs III — was on the board for the Broncos at 15. In two of the mocks, a top-four tackle — Andrew Thomas, Tristan Wirfs, Mekhi Becton and Jedrick Wills — was available for Denver. But not in a single mock was there both a top tackle and top receiver available thanks to the run.


If Elway wants to ensure he’ll land either the top offensive tackle or top wide receiver, he’ll need to jump to No. 8 overall. In all five mocks, a receiver or offensive tackle hadn’t both been selected before the eighth pick. In fact, in two mocks, neither a receiver nor tackle had been selected by the eighth overall pick.

Additionally, it’s not inconceivable that the Cardinals, who own the eighth overall pick, would trade with Denver. According to the draft value chart, the jump from No. 15 to eight would cost Denver a mid-to-late second-round pick.

According to the mock drafts, trading up with the Cardinals would guarantee Denver would land either the first receiver in the draft or the first tackle. Both are major needs for the Broncos.


With five top-100 selections entering the draft, the Broncos aren’t in a situation where they need to accumulate more draft capital. Thus, trading from 15 to later in the first round has never been the sexiest idea.

However, after playing out the five mock drafts, the idea of trading back became not only more intriguing but potentially more realistic.

In two of the mocks, Denver was deciding between wide receiver Denzel Mims and Becton at 15. Mims would appear to be a stretch in the middle of the first round, while Becton is a polarizing pick as some love his potential, and others are turned off by his massive size. If the Broncos fell under the later belief surrounding Becton, then neither option is ideal.

Left with no ideal options, Elway could very well trade back to make a better value pick later in the first round while acquiring more draft capital.


WR Denzel Mims

In the first mock, Denver’s decision was between Mims and Becton as the top three receivers were off the board and so were the other top three tackles.

OT Mekhi Becton

The second mock left the Broncos with the same decision—Mims or Becton? This time, Denver went with the 6-foot-7, 364-pound tackle to help protect Drew Lock. Much as the first mock, the other top three tackles and the top three receivers were gone by 15.

DL Derrick Brown

In the first two mocks, the dominant defensive tackle was snagged by the Panthers at No. 7. However, due to shakeups earlier in the draft, Brown fell all the way to No. 15. But Ruggs was also on the board, making a tough decision for Elway. Ultimately, the Broncos went with the 6-foot-5, 326-pound defensive force.

WR Jerry Jeudy

The Broncos should ship a nice housewarming gift to their division-rival Las Vegas Raiders for allowing the star receiver to fall to them. Instead of drafting a receiver with the 12th-overall pick, the Raiders selected cornerback C.J. Henderson. Thanks to that, the Broncos landed arguably the draft’s best receiver.

WR Henry Ruggs III

Thanks to the Raiders surprising the NFL world and selecting Jordan Love, the Broncos were able to land not just a top receiver, but the most dangerous wideout in the draft. Drew Lock gets the weapon of the draft in Ruggs.

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