Sunday, July 13, 2008

Preparing for the 2009 Draft; pars tertia:

Few will be more shocked than me if, as stated in "pars secunda", Courtney Greene does become the Broncos 1st round pick in 2009. Not to reiterate all the variables previously enumerated, it's a pure guess, but one with parameters. No one expects Denver to select a QB in the first. No one takes kickers/punters or FBs in the first round. Some areas of need have been addressed and some of the proposed solutions may not work. Injuries will occur to some college players and some Juniors will come out. It isn't a science and when the draft itself is in progress, it's very dynamic.

For those curious about what was taken into consideration beyond that which was stated in "pars secunda", here is more discussion. At this very distant point in time, how can we project who might be suitable at the approximate place the Broncos will pick in '09? Study is required at the newsstand and on the internet. Those who conduct this exercise annually know to question and challenge the sources. Don't be put off by format. In this endeavor there is no such thing as too much information. TV helps if you have the channels that show Spring scrimmages and preseason conference roundups (get out your branding iron). During the season WATCH as much college football as possible (within reason). Look for guys who stand out. I was regularly able to see Big East football games last year and one guy who stood out every time his team played was Danny Lansanah, MLB, UConn. He didn't get drafted, but was a CFA for the Packers. Broncos play the Pack in preseason. Boom-Danny Lansanah. Maybe he'll be good enough to back up Nick Barnett, and then ... who knows? By the way fans, try to look for good players who play well and give credit where credit is due. Don't hate on a guy just because he plays for a team you don't like. In view of Denver's recent unsatisfactory experience with certain players, I try to train my reading eye to catch certain words like ... "arrested".
Who are some players of interest for the Broncos who might be available in their window in the first round in '09?

  • Duke Robinson, G, OU, 6-5, 338, All Big XII, consensus All-American.
  • Aaron Curry, OLB, Wake, 6-2, 242, 99 tkl, 3 sk, 10.5 tfl, 4 pbu, 4 int in '07.
  • Brandon Pettigrew, TE, Ok.St., 6-6, 260, 35 rec, 540 yds, 4 TD in '07.
  • Brian Cushing, OLB, USC, 25 tkl, 1 sk, 1.5 tfl, 2 pbu in '07.
  • Dannell Ellerbe, ILB, GA, 6-1, 234, 93 tkl, 4.5 sk, 7.5 tfl, 1 pbu, 1 int in '07.
  • Louis Murphy, WR, FLA, 6-2, 202, 37 rec, 548 yds, 5 TD in '07. [*4.38 speed]
  • Marcus Freeman, OLB, the OSU, 6-1, 238, 109 tkl, 1.5 sk, 8 tfl, 5 pbu in '07.
  • Coutney Greene, FS, Rutgers, 6-1, 210, 101 tkl, 1 sk, 1.5 tfl, 4 pbu, 1 int in '07 [*Rutgers leading tackler]
  • Matt Shaughnessy, DE, Wisc., 6-5 254, 60 tkl, 5 sk, 13 tfl, 3 pbu in '07.
  • Derek Pegues, FS, Miss.St., 5-10, 196, 50 tkl, 2 tfl, 7 pbu, 5 int in '07 [*4.4 speed]
  • Arian Foster, RB, Tenn., 6-1, 218, 245 att, 1192 yds, 12 TD, 39 rec, 340 yds, 2 TD in '07.
If Robinson, Curry or Pettigrew is available when the Broncos are up, I hope they can get one of them. Depending on which Juniors come out and whose "stock" has waxed or waned, one of these guys might slide to Denver. Imagine Robinson next to Clady. "Ryan. Take the outside rusher. I've got the inside covered." "You got it, Duke."

Great as that sounds, I don't see it happening.

Likewise with Curry. I put these guys in to show where the range might begin and end. Pettigrew might have a big senior year, but I think another TE or two just as good might be available later. Cushing, Ellerbe, Murphy and Freeman don't really address anticipated needs directly, but they are listed to show who might be available in the event "the guy" isn't there. Of course, my "the guy" is Courtney Greene because the FS seems to me the biggest defensive need in '09. Shaughnessy, Pegues and Foster are there in the event that Greene is gone. If FS was considered a big need, then Derek could become the new "the guy".

Players get injured. Juniors come out. Combine reshuffles the deck. Shanahan has moved up two of the last three drafts. Who knows? If Denver's roster becomes saturated with young talent, Mike might give away draft picks to move up and get a James Laurinaitis, Rey Maualuga or James Davis. However, a primary need isn't addressed until you get to Robinson. MLB and RB have received some attention in '08 and there is a whole season to go until those players prove themselves or not. If those positions stabilize then I'm sticking with this analysis of the first round ... for the time being.

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