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Two Round Mock Draft | Draft AnalystSuper
The score doesn’t matter Bradley Chubb Broncos Jersey , but these things do. Here are seven things I’ll be watching for during the Hall of Fame Game." Denver Broncos Preseason7 things to watch during the Broncos-Falcons HOF gameNew,71commentsThe score doesn’t matter, but these things do. Here are seven things I’ll be watching for during the Hall of Fame Game. MDTShare this storyShare this on FacebookShare this on TwitterShareAll sharing optionsShareAll sharing options for:7 things to watch during the Broncos-Falcons HOF gameTwitterFacebookRedditPocketFlipboardEmailIt’s been all of 212 days since the Denver Broncos played against the Los Angeles Chargers. 212 days since Case Keenum threw his last pass in orange and blue. 212 days since Vance Joseph strolled along a Denver sideline.It seems like eons ago, but in all reality it was less than a year. Since then, John Elway has worked overtime to completely overhaul the roster. Vic Fangio, Mike Munchak, Rich Scangarello, Joe Flacco, Drew Lock, Kareem Jackson, Noah Fant, the names go on and on. While the faces will look significantly different, a slew of questions remain. These games will start to offer hints at those answers, and that’s why they matter. Adam Malnati and Ian St. Clair previewed today’s Hall of Fame game on the MHR Radio Podcast (ApplePodcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher).1. Who is QB2, really?I mentioned in Mile High Report’s round table how I’m looking forward to getting a first look at Drew Lock tonight. In truth, I’m eager to observe all of the Broncos’ arms. Hopefully one or more prove they’re the future for the position.Early reports out of the first week of camp suggested Kevin Hogan looked like he was trending downwards. Since then, things have gone quiet. Is that because the breathless coverage of Lock, or because Hogan has rebounded back to halfway decent play? We’ll soon find out.If he’s shaky, Brett Rypien’s chances at the roster increase exponentially. I was as high on him as anyone when he came out of Boise State (even ranking him above a certain New York Giant), but now he has to prove he can overcome his physical limitations. Here’s hoping.2. Is Booker’s job in danger?I’m sure you noticed Theo Riddick paid a visit to Denver recently. Did you see Elway brought David Williams back? Did you also notice Devontae Jackson and Khalfani Muhammad turning heads in camp? Let’s just say they aren’t here to take Royce Freeman or Phillip Lindsay’s jobs.Now I’m not sure Booker’s on the outs if Rich Scangarello really is looking to utilize running backs in the passing game as much as reports suggest. In 2018, he was the best route runner out of the backfield. He was also more effective with limited carries than you probably remember.What he wasn’t is a standout blocker. MHR’s Joe Mahoney opened my eyes to that this summer and it became all the more evident the longer I watched Denver’s offense. This is why Riddick could make a lot of sense. Not only is the former Lion one of the better dump off receivers in football the last couple seasons, he’s also an underrated pass protector.If Booker wants to ensure his role as RB3, he needs to show he can pick up a blitz and serve as a reliable compliment to the younger duo. If he can’t do that, his job status becomes a lot more unstable, especially if Jackson and Muhammad can show him up as a returner.Of course, if a decision has already been made, Booker may not play a snap.3. Is Garett Bolles in hot water?With Joe Flacco entrenched as QB1, Bolles has been the favorite whipping boy for a lot of local media the last couple weeks. Ever since Elijah Wilkinson earned praise from Rich Scangarello, the low hanging fruit to fill three or four minutes of dead air is to suggest Bolles is headed for the bench.The truth is, Denver’s strongest potential offensive line features Bolles at left tackle in 2019. On Tuesday, Fangio announced that Bolles, Dalton Risner, and Connor McGovern would start the Hall of Fame game. Risner makes sense as a rookie starter who would benefit from live action. Even McGovern belongs there, given the issues with snaps that seem to be plaguing him. After the news broke, MHR’s Scotty Payne dismissed it, and he has a point. There’s a very real possibility the plan is to play the starting line minus Leary (recovering from an Achilles tear) and James (dealing with a leg bruise). So it’s worth monitoring how many snaps Bolles logs. 4. Are the young receivers ready for their moments?When camp opened, I identified the receiving corps as the biggest X factor hanging over the 2019 season.GIF Horse - The pre-camp Denver Broncos’ preview - Mile High ReportIt’s hard to blame them. Reports out of camp have been a mixed bag. Drops have been an issue here and there Von Miller Jersey White , though part of that is to be expected as the young receivers go up against Chris Harris, Bryce Callahan, Justin Simmons and the rest of what looks like one of the best secondaries in the league. Tonight they play second and third string Atlanta Falcons, though. It’s time to put up or shut up.Will any of them prove they can break open and hang onto the ball? 5. Who will emerge among the front 7?If you took a look at my early roster projection, you’ll probably remember how my research into Fangio’s Bears have shown that he tends to carry 6 defensive lineman, 4 to 5 edge rushers, and 4 to 5 off ball linebackers.A little bit of math (or a look at that projection) will reveal there’s maybe five open spots among those groups. Von Miller and Bradley Chubb aren’t going anywhere. Shelby Harris, Derek Wolfe, Adam Gotsis, Zach Kerr, and Dre’Mont Jones are locks along the defensive line. Todd Davis, Josey Jewell, and Justin Hollins are going to be on the roster. Dekoda Watson was brought in to be a special teams standout and veteran presence on the edge.There’s a few hints where things are going. If last year’s Bears are any sign of things to come for the Broncos, Fangio will employ Nickel personnel close to 80% of the time in 2019. Both Kerr and Harris are listed at nose tackle.Chances are high that one, maybe two edge rushers stick to the roster. The defensive lineman is more likely to be an interior pass rusher than a run plugger. The linebackers will need to be able to play in space.This is the closest thing to a battle royale out of this year’s camp roster. It’s going to be exciting to see who can fight their way to the 53. 6. Will Fangio keep five or six corners?Every season he coordinated the Bears defense, Fangio carried six cornerbacks on the active roster. The versatility of Denver’s secondary puts that number in question because Kareem Jackson can move from safety “in case of an emergency.” While the Broncos head coach dismissed the current depth chart, it’s worth noting that Linden Stephens and Horace Richardson are the fifth and sixth corners. Both are second year pros who spent time on different practice squads last year. Stephens spent time on the Saints and Rams before coming to Denver in November. Richardson, on the other hand, bounced from Minnesota to Detroit, Detroit to Kansas City, and KC to Denver last December.All signs hint that they’ll fight with Trey Johnson and Alijah Holder to make it. The former AAF star looks like a soft lock for CB4 after a solid start to camp and previous experience in the Fangio D.7. How will Parks be used?The safety position is similar to corner in that four or five players will stick to the active roster. Currently Kareem Jackson and Justin Simmons are locked into starting jobs and look unlikely to play tonight. That leaves Will Parks an opportunity to stand out.Last year, the 3rd year pro quietly broke into the limelight playing the Vance Joseph Dimebacker role Elway had envisioned for Su’a Cravens. According to Pro Football Focus’ game charting, Parks played 224 snaps in the box, 198 snaps at free safety, 88 snaps at slot corner, 42 snaps at outside linebacker, and 20 snaps at outside cornerback.Fangio’s D rarely used a dimebacker last year, so it’s going to be interesting to see if and how he makes use of Parks’ skill set. Up until camp opened, most of Broncos Country assumed he’d be a starting safety. Will he still log a starter snap count? With the 2018 season coming to a close with a _____ win, it’s now time to start looking ahead. I thought my first post-Lombardi Horse Tracks would serve as a great time to take a look at the current state of the Broncos and where they need to improve if they want to compete for titles in the Fangio era.QuarterbackThis one’s obvious. If you were to enter “Quarterbacks Mile High Report” into the ol’ Google, you’d get posts from as far back as October this year. On the first page. Case Keenum is the odds on favorite to start the opener in 2019, but all reports suggest Elway and the Broncos brass are going to aggressively pursue Drew Lock of Missouri. Denver Broncos: John Elway calls Case Keenum a “short-term fix” at QB - Mile High ReportI’m on the record as dubious of Lock, in part because I think he needs serious work to break some of his Cutler-esque tendencies. Everyone says they’ll give a rookie time in February, but as soon as Keenum throws the first training camp pick, fans and the media pressure will mount to bench the journeyman for the shiny new toy.Denver Broncos can’t afford to play it safe at quarterback anymore - Mile High ReportHow can the Denver Broncos ensure they get their Quarterback? - Mile High ReportChances are, Denver will need to move up if they want to avoid the Jacksonville Jaguars or New York Giants grabbing Lock. Speculation about who they’re talking to and what it will cost is going to drive a lot of news this spring.SafetyQB is the biggest need, but I’d go so far as to say that an elite safety is right behind. There’s a chance that the Broncos could develop one from the current crop on the roster. Vic Fangio turned Adrian Amos into one of the best in the game over his tenure with the Bears and it’s no secret that Justin Simmons has sky-high potential. There are flashes on his 2018 tape, perhaps a stronger scheme to play within will lead to better results going forward?Failing that, Denver still has Su’a Cravens (who Elway had a round 1 grade on in 2016) and Will Parks Royce Freeman Jersey , who really surprised last season. If the coaching staff isn’t sold on any of the three, Amos lurks in free agency. Perhaps he’d be keen on reuniting with the only defensive system he’s played in during his professional career?CornerbackSuper Bowl 50 feels like a lifetime ago, but the last time the Broncos played for all the marbles, they were led by a defense famously known as “The No Fly Zone.” While the 2018 D was among the league’s elite, replacing Aqib Talib with Tramaine Brock led to something closer to Southwest Airlines at times. Bradley Roby’s promotion to CB2 was a bit of a mixed back, and he’s no certainty to return. Brock’s own return is unlikely. Behind them is Isaac Yiadom and...?GIF Horse - The Most Valuable Denver Broncos 25-34 - Mile High ReportThe 2019 secondary will be led by Chris Harris Jr, who should be Canton-bound when all is said and done. But he’ll need help. The Fangio defense has made hay without elite corner play in the past, but things will be easier if Elway and the Front Office can find another talented cover man to add to the mix.It won’t be easy: the free agent class has one legitimate headliner: Ronald Darby. The bare market could mean players like Roby still haul in $10-12 million. That leaves the draft, but if it takes a first and additional 2018 Day 2 ammo to get a QB like Lock, pickings could be slim. Offensive LineThe final Broncos OL from left to right: Bolles-Wilkinson-McGovern-Turner-VeldheerGIF Horse - The Most Valuable Denver Broncos 16-24 - Mile High ReportEven if you discount the fact that both Ronald Leary and Matt Paradis could depart, the Broncos will need to make decisions about their “hogs.” Veldheer and Turner, like Paradis, are free agents. All three should receive some consideration from around the league. If none return Mike Munchak could have his work cut out for him: Wilkinson’s ceiling is a versatile backup, McGovern’s probably a guard and Bolles needs a lot of work.Luckily, the free agent class and draft offer solutions. How Elway decides to address the front five could have drastic impact on the offensive production next year.Wide ReceiverDo you believe Emmanuel Sanders can return to peak health at 32 years old after tearing his Achilles late in the 2018 campaign? If he can, the 2019 receiving corps will look a lot like the 2018 version. Courtland Sutton, DaeSean Hamilton, and Tim Patrick should all return. All three could breakout with another offseason of experience and better play calling to aid them.If he can’t, the Broncos will need to find another set of hands. In free agency there’s a few options that intrigue, but a lot that come with serious questions. It seems unlikely from here that Denver spends another draft pick on a wide receiver, though the 2019 class has some exciting prospects. Defensive Front 7Seemingly the strength of the Broncos defense, there is plenty of room for improvement. Denver’s D finished 4th against the pass per Football Outsiders’ DVOA metric, but league average vs the run and sub par against passes to the middle of the field. The Fangio system will hopefully lead to internal improvement for the returners, notably Bradley Chubb who should improve on the finer aspects of Edge play in his sophomore season. GIF Horse - The Most Valuable Denver Broncos 7-15 - Mile High ReportThere are a few questions: some wonder if Todd Davis and Josey Jewell have the range to serve as the middle men in the new defense. Brandon Marshall, Domata Peko, Zach Kerr, Shane Ray, and Shaq Barrett are likely to depart. Elway will need to find new depth, but fortunately the talent available in free agency and the draft should provide options.Running Backs The 2018 Broncos were an average offense, but actually finished among the five best rushing teams in football. Phillip Lindsay didn’t haul in the Offensive Rookie of the Year award, but was voted to the Pro Bowl. He was a dynamic breakaway threat that had to be planned around every week and should serve as a foundational player going forward. Denver Broncos: Ranking Phillip Lindsay’s 10 best Rookie Runs - Mile High ReportBehind him Royce Freeman and Devontae Booker fill out the depth chart with complimentary skills. Freeman brings strong vision and deceptive mobility for 230 lb back. Most expected him to win the starting job out of camp last year and with a return to health he should give the Broncos a strong 1-2 punch. Booker was the pass catching third down back last year and had route running skills neither rookie had fully developed yet. The key word, of course is yet. Best case scenario one of the two youngsters shows signs of marked improvement in the passing game. Lindsay is such an explosive player with the ball in his hands that if he can force defenses to account for him in space the vertical game to Sutton would open up. It’s likely Elway looks to add competition for Booker as well as eat some reps in training camp, but this group has a pretty strong chance to return in tact for 2019. All three remain on rookie contracts and produced with their opportunities last year.On to your Broncos linksFormer Denver Broncos disappoint in Super Bowl LIII - Mile High ReportPat Bowlen voted into Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2019 - Mile High ReportPlayers react to Denver Broncos Hall of Fame announcements - Mile High ReportBroncos Steve Atwater denied Hall of Fame induction - Mile High ReportHall of fame exasperation and the Denver Broncos ownership situation. - Mile High ReportFMIA: Ego-less Patriots Figure It Out In Time Vs. Rams in ‘throwback’ Super Bowl – ProFootballTalk2019 NFL Mock Draft: Matt Miller’s Post-Super Bowl Predictions | Bleacher Report | Latest News, Videos and HighlightsMarino’s 2019 NFL Mock Draft 5.0 - The Draft NetworkNFL Mock Draft 2019: Two-round projections - The San Diego Union-Tribune2019 NFL mock draft: Here’s 2 rounds after Super Bowl - SBNation.comFebruary 4 -  Bowl StoriesSuper Bowl Analysis: Highlights of Patriots-Rams | SI.comJared Goff fails to deliver in the biggest game of his career – ProFootballTalkTom Brady sets record for Super Bowl wins with sixth ring for PatriotsDuron Harmon won’t visit White House after Patriots’ Super Bowl win | SI.comSuper Bowl 2019: MVP Julian Edelman shouldn’t have been playingThe Patriots Dynasty Just Won’t Die | FiveThirtyEightRob Gronkowski could “barely walk” (en route to party) – ProFootballTalkIn a league led by offense, Super Bowl LIII was a victory for the old school | Touchdown WireAnatomy of a Play: The Brandin Cooks touchdown that wasn’t | Touchdown WireThe New England Secondary: Exploit the Hesitation - Inside The PylonSuper Bowl 53: What’s next for Rams? | NFL | Sporting NewsSuper Bowl: Congrats to the Pats but that was dreadfulPatriots never practiced offensive package that led to winning TD – ProFootballTalkThe Rams Really Made A Mess Of Things | FiveThirtyEightSean McVay says he was ‘outcoached’ in Rams Super Bowl loss | SI.comSuper Bowl 53 halftime show was far from perfect, but it was perfect for this game | NFL | Sporting NewsThe Artless Spectacle of Maroon 5 at the Super Bowl | The New YorkerSuper Bowl music review: An empty-calorie display of corporate-pop competence from Maroon 5 - Chicago TribuneSuper Bowl 2019: Gladys Knight causes prop bet controversy with anthemSuper Bowl 2019 halftime show review: Maroon 5 was fine and forgettable - VoxSuper Bowl 2019: cannabis ad gets rejected by CBS - VoxOther NFL NewsNew Orleans Times-Picayune publishes ‘What Super Bowl?’ front page | SI.comChiefs fans are livid after Tony Gonzalez says Falcons ‘made my career’Breaking: Kansas City fans are still babies.Rising ESPN star Adnan Virk fired, escorted out in leak investigation

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