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NFL Denver Broncos

Denver Broncos 2013 NFL Mock Draft, Week 3: 7 Rounds

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Denver Broncos Mock Draft 3.0

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The Denver Broncos appear to be done with free agency and will now turn their attention to the draft next month. There could still be a minor signing but the heavy lifting is over.

The draft for the Broncos is going to have a different feel than the first two conducted by the Vice-President of Football Operations, John Elway. In those drafts, the Broncos were looking for players that could come in and play immediately. That won’t be the case this year outside of one or two picks.

The Broncos will probably be looking for a running back that can come in and play, and maybe even start. As you will see in the mock draft, we think that pick will come very early and that player will contribute immediately.

The other position that could see some immediate playing time is at safety. Anyone brought in at the spot may not start, but they will play a lot if they show the ability to play.

Other than those positions, the Broncos are going to be looking for three things out of the players they draft in April. The first thing is finding players who will develop and be ready to play when the time is right. Secondly, the Broncos will be seeking to add depth at key positions. Last but most importantly, the team will be looking for guys who can contribute on special teams in their first season.

The Broncos are a championship contending team with only a couple of holes to fill in the draft, but that doesn’t make it any less important. The players who are drafted this year will be expected to play a big role on special teams, and be ready if injuries hit.

Away we go with the Broncos mock draft, part three.

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Round One-Eddie Lacy-Running Back-Alabama

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Eddie Lacy remains the pick in the first-round for the Broncos; he is exactly what the team needs out of that position. He is a tough, inside runner who gets positive yardage almost every time he carries the ball. The Broncos are a passing team so they do not need a guy who can carry the ball 35 times a game. They need a player who can pick up 3rd and 1 to keep drives alive.

Lacy, in combination with Ronnie Hillman,, would give the Broncos enough of a running threat to keep defenses honest. In addition, he is the type of running back that wears defenses down with his style and would be valuable in protecting a lead. If Lacy drops to the #28 pick in the first-round, he is the perfect fit for the Broncos.

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Round Two-Phillip Thomas-Safety Fresno State

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The Broncos addressed a lot of their immediate needs in free agency, but safety was not one of them. Unlike the fans, however, the Broncos are comfortable going forward with Rahim Moore and Quinton Carter, but they still need someone else to push those two. Phillip Thomas is a great fit for this spot in the second round.

Thomas, as mentioned last week, struggles in coverage at times but the Broncos have four excellent cover cornerbacks so Thomas would be able to play to his strengths. Those include blitzing from his safety position and run support. He also is adept at covering the tight end, an area that the Broncos struggled with in 2012. Thomas would give the Broncos three young safeties and the hope would be that two of them develop into players that the team can count on for years to come.

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Round Three-Ryan Swope-Wide Receiver-Texas A & M

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The Broncos signed Wes Welker to be the slot receiver for the next two seasons, but he is a temporary fix. Ryan Swope is the perfect receiver for this offense and could contribute immediately as a fourth receiver. Imagine defenses trying to cover Welker, Swope, Demaryius Thomas and Eric Decker? That’s probably not going to happen too often.

Swope is the classic slot receiver who is not real fast but is very quick in small areas and knows how to get open. He also has great hands and catches bad balls as well as anyone in the draft. Swope would also contribute on special teams and be a natural successor to Welker in a couple years.

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Round Four-Devin Taylor-Defensive End/Linebacker-South Carolina

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The leadership of the Broncos believes that the best defense is to rush the passer and you can never have too many guys who have that ability. Devin Taylor fits that profile perfectly. The only problem with Taylor, and it’s really a problem, is that he really does not have a position. He’s small for a defensive end but a little big for an outside linebacker.

However, Taylor is a playmaker and it really doesn’t matter where you line him up. He’s going to get to the quarterback and/or the ball carrier. Defense is about making plays and Taylor does that as well as anyone in the draft. He’s a player you draft and then find a place to play him. The Broncos are talented enough and deep enough to be able to take a shot on a guy like Taylor in the fourth round.

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Round Five-Braden Brown-Offensive Tackle-BYU

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One of the areas where the Broncos will be looking to add depth in along the offensive line, especially at the tackle position. Braden Brown is the right type of player in this spot. He’s not ready to play on every down but would be a solid backup to Ryan Clady, and could be ready in a year or two.

Brown has all the physical tools to be a very good left tackle in the NFL, he just needs more time to develop his skills. The Broncos might have the luxury of drafting a player like Brown and letting him develop behind Clady and Orlando Franklin.

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Round Seven-Anthony McCloud-Defensive Tackle-Florida State

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Defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio loves big defensive tackles that he can rotate in and out of the game. Anthony McCloud fits that profile, he’s a bit of a project but that works for the Broncos. They are set in the middle for the next couple of seasons.

McCloud can take his time to develop and be ready to go when the Broncos need him. He is a good run stuffer and often takes up more than one blocker which is what teams want from their defensive tackles.

The draft is getting closer by the day and the mock drafts are starting to focus in on what teams are likely to do. We won’t get every player right but the next few editions of the Broncos mock draft should give you a good idea of what positions they are going look at.

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