Stampede News: Draft Wrap Up
Draft Wrap Up
After the Denver Broncos made a number of moves, including the trading of two prominent starters to the Pittsburgh Steelers for the #2 overall draft pick, it was expected things would return to their usual low-key self in the tradition of a GM Wade Pearce draft. Seasons of trading out the first had not prepared the Broncos' faithful for what happened on draft day.
1.2 WR Ferdinand Buford - Auburn
With CB Kyle Fuller now wearing a Steelers jersey, the expectations were high that the Broncos would be drafting a corner to replace him. But with the New Orleans Saints drafting highly-desired corner Tre Deveroux, the Broncos instead went for what many saw as the next-best player in the draft.
While the Broncos had been actively shopping Mark Perez around the league all off-season, the inability to move him (despite a good offer from the Minnesota Vikins) combined with the resigning of veteran Marvin Young had some thinking the chances of a new receiver would be low.
But Buford is a superstar in the making, with many comparing him to previous Broncos superstart Demaryius Thomas. With QB Ryan Tannehill throwing the ball and Marvin Young mentoring, Buford could be in for one hell of a season.
Trade - Indianpolis Colts
After missing out on Deveroux with the 1.2 pick, the Broncos entered trade negotiations with the Indianpolis Colts for the service of physically gifted corner Trae Waynes. The departure of Fuller to the Steelers had left a need at that position and the Broncos had previously tried to secure Waynes prior to the draft.
Waynes still needs a season to help his AWR boost and to get his morale back on track, but he is a physically gifted corner who has a number of seasons still left in the tank. Some will say the Broncos overpaid for his services, but as the corner stocks in the draft dwindled, it was a seller's market to secure a player like Waynes.
Future Broncos 1st
CB Trae Waynes
Future Colts 7th
Trade - Green Bay Packers
In a reversal of market trends, where superstar wide receivers just couldn't compete with the draft's availability of receivers this season, the Broncos farewelled WR Mark Perez to the Packers for a price that was lower than a rumoured offer from the Minnesota Vikings earlier in the season.
When questioned on the trade, GM Wade Pearce commented "We had a number of contract issues to address. Mark [Perez] would be competing with Trae Waynes for our priority signing next season and with a number of other last-year contracts to contend with, the Broncos had to make a hard roster decision. In hindsight, our market evaluation of Perez didn't pan out so we took what we could on the day."
WR Mark Perez
1.32 WR JuJu Smith-Schuste - USC
With Perez departed, the Broncos had a number of options to look at when their pick came around. Ultimately, they completed the reboot of their receiving corps, likely condeming Marvin Young to a slot-receiver and mentoring role for the 2023 season.
JuJu gives the Broncos a second tall target and while not as physically gifted as Buford, he is a perfect fit for the routes a #2 receiver will run. Oustanding agility, excellent hands and good acceleration combine with a decent speed that will only improve over the coming seasons to gift the Broncos a hopefully long-term, twin-tower receiving combo that can terrorise the AFC West for seasons to come.
Trade - Miami Dolphins
A simple future pick trade for the Broncos for the purpose of filling roster needs with viable starters now.
Future Broncos 2nd
Future Dolphins 4th
2.12 OT Iosefa Loto - LSU
The earlier off-season trade of OG Khalid Croons to the Steelers left the Broncos with a need on the offensive line. It wasn't sure if the Broncos would recruit from the draft or reach for a cheap trade or the UFA for a replacement. Loto provides the Broncos with a talented player on the line. Speculation is that current starting LT for the Broncos Oliver Zebedee may be moved into the current-vacant right guard position instead of forcing the new rookie to make the move.
4.12 SS Keith Scott - LSU
Iosefa Loto's fellow LSU graduate was picked up by the Broncos in the 4th round. While veteran Phillip Thomas was retained for one more season, it is obvious Scott is the next hopeful starter for the strong safety position. Some details over his abilities will be fleshed out during the post-draft training camp as some questions remain around his apparent foot speed.
5.12 DE Andres Coffin - Colorado
The drafting of Coffin raised some eyebrows from draft reporters, as the Broncos neither need a DE at this point in time or need one of his play style. However, a brief post-pick interview with GM Wade Pearce noted that he hopes Coffin will show potential to make the move into the defensive tackle position, providing a viable long-term mobile partner for last season's 2nd round pick, Caleb Brantley.
Some questions remain around his ability to hold the line and further training camp will determine if he's a boom or bust pick.
6.3 WR Eric Almquist - Louisville
Almquist became the third receiver to be drafted by the Broncos and is the third speculative pick by the team. Almquist appears to be on the precipice of great talent and with some extra training, his football smarts may be converted into a solid option at the receiver position, making him a sleeper-pick of the 2023 draft.
7.6 OLB Sabe Melong - Oklahoma St.
Melong fills the current vacant depth position for the Broncos. If his post-draft training camp reveals better capabilities than scouted, he'll be a steal this late in the draft. If they skew the wrong way, he'll be a worthwhile long-term depth player on the Broncos roster.
7.13 WR Ethan Beavo - Nebraska
Beavo, it appears, will not be signed by the Broncos.
(by W_Pearce on 10/01/2017)
Replies - 2 :: Views - 31
Stampede News: Alex Carter Signs On Dotted Line
Alex Carter Signs On Dotted Line
The Denver Broncos have reached an agreement with corner Alex Carter to remain a Bronco for the next 5 seasons.
Carter was drafted with the 51st overall pick in the 2019 draft by Denver and he has progressed through the secondary ranks of the team, playing behind both Janoris Jenkins and Kyle Fuller learning his trade.
In the 2020 season, he expanded his experience by becoming the team's primary kick returner, amassing 1,333 yards on 56 returns across the season. In the Broncos championship season, Carter won the starting position over Harry Diaz after Jenkins was traded to the Atlanta Falcon. His season was interrupted, though, when he was injured in week 1 of the season and did not return until week 12. He then returned as a starter and was a solid contributor to the team's Super Bowl run.
In 2021, with Kyle Fuller suffering a season-ending injury in the pre-season, Carter became the team's #1 corner. A role that same him grow in the position. However, by his own admission, his deflection-to-catches allowed ratio was too high for a true #1 corner position.
But the Broncos' front office obviously like what they see in Carter, as they have just inked in a 5-year deal reportedly worth over $40 million, a sign that the talented 26-year old has the faith of management. Combined with Fuller's trade to the Pittsburgh Steelers this off-season, it looks like Carter has the starting position locked in.
After the successful rookie season of Fernando Carrusco and the fact the Broncos hold the 2nd overall pick of the 2023 draft, many are wondering if Carter's partner-in-crime for next season will be Carrusco or a new draftee?
(by W_Pearce on 09/14/2017)
Replies - 0 :: Views - 13
Stampede News: Broncos Trade Big
Broncos Trade Big
GM Wade Pearce of the Denver Broncos is not known for an aggressive trading personality when it comes to draft picks. In fact, the general manager is more known to trade out of the first round, flexing other team's desires for draft picks to secure talent where needed.
But this latest trade bucks this trend as the Broncos have reached an agreement with the Pittsburgh Steelers that will see the team holding the 2nd overall pick. If Wade Pearce manages to deny his normal trading tendencies, it will be, by far, the Broncos' highest draft pick in GZL since he took the reins of the franchise all the way back half-way through the 2013 season.
As part of the deal, the Broncos are also trading CB Kyle Fuller, OG Khalid Croons and their own 2nd round draft pick in exchange for the lucrative first round pick.
"We had the players the Steelers wanted," GM Wade Pearce stated, "and it was time to shake some things up. We have relied heavily in the past on our draft capabilities to bring success to Denver but we also realise that our current breed of drafted superstars delivered our Super Bowl win in 2021 but the next generation is needed. What better way to bring in that next generation than through a top 3 draft pick."
Kyle Fuller: Signed But Not Seen
For corner Kyle Fuller, the sudden departure from Denver would come as a shock. Fuller's last meaningful snap for the Broncos occurred in the 2021 Super Bowl, before a season-ending injury in the 2022 pre-season saw him placed on injury reserve just weeks after inking a new 7-year deal.
Some would expect such a deal to secure a player's rights, but instead Fuller will be moving to Pittsburgh with 6 years still remaining on that deal and no meaningful playtime on the books in Denver.
Fuller leaves the Broncos after 5 seasons, having been drafted 15th overall in the 2018 draft. While Fuller has been a highly capable starter for the team across his time there, his move could indicate that the Broncos are looking for a true gamebreaker at the corner position to pair with new #1 man in Denver, CB Alex Carter.
Croons Moving On
While Fuller was a Broncos' draftee, Khalid Croons was traded from the Green Bay Packers in the 2017 offseason and after some early struggles has turned into a solid and impressive offensive guard for the Broncos. While his sacks allowed stat has remaining fairly consistent, since 2017, his blocks have risen to now average between 70-80 each season. With the Steelers needing fresh blood on the line, Croons should slot into a starting position from day 1.
Prior to this trade, the Broncos had met their requirement for a starting MLBer in the form of MLB Benardrick McKinney from the Atlanta Falcons. Their other wants of a wide receiver can, theoretically, be met with the the re-signing or tagging of WR Marvin Young. The departure of Fuller puts the team's needs squarely in the court of a corner. Sitting at the 2nd overall pick means the Broncos are well placed to draft a potential game breaker, with a couple of highly desireable candidates filling the position.
Denver Broncos send:
CB Kyle Fuller
OG Khalid Croons
Pittsburgh Steelers send:
(by W_Pearce on 08/27/2017)
Replies - 0 :: Views - 16
Stampede News: Broncos Secure New MLB
Broncos Secure New MLB
The Denver Broncos have agreed to a deal with the Atlanta Falcons to secure the services of MLB Bernadrick McKinney as their new starting MLBer for the 2023 season.
The move signals the end of MLB Kevin Minter's nine year career in Denver. Minter's contract is up for renewal this season, and despite Minter breaking the 100 tackle mark for the 5th time in his career even while missing four games injured, the team had not committed to any future renewal this off-season.
For McKinney, it brings a new chance in his career after losing his starting position to rookie MLB Raekwon McMillan in the 2022 season. Before losing the starting role, McKinney made 138 tackles, 18 for a loss in the 2021 season, showing he has the credentials the Broncos want.
Farewell to a Stalwart
Kevin Minter was GM Wade Pearce's first draft pick for the Denver Broncos when he was selected with the 35th overall pick in the 2014 draft. He started that season in a 3-4 lineup and lead the league's rookie class with 80 tackles. The following season, Minter would crack the 100 tackle mark for the first time in his career, a feat he would repeat 4 more times over the coming seasons.
After cracking the Top 10 tackler leaderboard for the first time in 2018, Minter's 2019 campaign was cut short with a season-ending injury in Week 4, where he was placed on injury reserve.
He returned in 2020 to once again cross the 100 tackle mark before being a key component in the 2021 Super Bowl winning team.
Knowing his immediate future was on the line, Minter pulled out all the stops in the 2022 season, recording another 100+ tackles and 4 interceptions, but the acquisition of McKinney has thwarted his attempts to renew a contract in Denver.
He may find a new home over the offseason, but his salary demands are likely not going to gel with the cap needs of the team.
The Broncos thank Kevin Minter for his efforts in Denver and the role he played in their 2021 Super Bowl victory and wish him all the best in his future endeavours.
Denver Broncos send:
Atlanta Falcons send:
MLB Bernadrick McKinney
(by W_Pearce on 08/27/2017)
Replies - 0 :: Views - 29
Stampede News: Shooting Gallery
If the defending Champion Denver Broncos ever come knocking at your door, inviting you to sign a contract with them this season, our advice is to run for the hills. The team has been ravaged through injuries this season, with starters either being knocked out for the season or needing to spend multiple weeks sidelined. It is only through dumb luck that they remain atop the AFC West, thanks mainly to the Oakland Raiders in a renewal season.
Last week, we announced that WR Chip Hankerson had been signed by the Broncos to replace WR Marvin Young, who had been placed on injury reserve after being ruled out for at least 8 weeks in the game against the Tennessee Titans, effectively ending his season. Well, after signing a $4.29M single year contract for the remainder of the season, Hankerson didn't even get to complete a single game and is also headed for the injury reserve, having also been sidelined for 8 weeks in the loss to the Kansas City Chiefs.
It's a tough time to be a Broncos starter and this reporter feels, tongue firmly "in-cheek", that the team is running some sort of Hunger Games-like trial of players. Who will be fit enough to stand at the end? Will the team actually win the division? Can they break the overwhelming trend of past winners missing the playoffs the next season? It's getting harder to see the team do it.
As a result, the Broncos will likely be returning to the UFA pool to see which unlucky player gets the next nod. They should look on the bright side...there's a multi-million dollar contract on offer to play a few game...if they can make it that far.
(by W_Pearce on 06/07/2017)
Replies - 0 :: Views - 12
At A Glance