2014 NFL Draft: 5 Late-Round Sleepers the Denver Broncos Should Target
5 Late-Round Sleepers The Denver Broncos Should Target
There is always that player who is drafted late that could make the impact the team was looking for.
The NFL Draft begins on Thursday, May 8, and there will be a lot of players from college who will be looking to continue their dreams of playing football while playing at the professional level. There have been a fair share of players who have been busts, players who have shined and then players who have still yet to find their rhythm at the professional level.
There is always a strange thing about the late-round players who seem to make the most impact. They go unnoticed but once a team takes a chance and drafts the player it never seems to fail that they will perform well enough that will have fans asking the question who is he? The Denver Broncos have had their fair share of players who were drafted in the late-rounds who made an huge impact on the franchise. Two players that come to my mind for the Broncos are Terrell Davis and Shannon Sharpe, who were drafted in the sixth and seventh rounds, respectively. Both players were late-round picks who made a huge impact on the Broncos franchise as they were a part of the two championships the team won in the late 1990s.
Even players like Tom Brady were drafted late and had such a huge success in the NFL. With that in mind, here are five players the Broncos should target in the late rounds who could be the difference in the Broncos franchise in the next few years.
5. Jalen Saunders, WR, Oklahoma
The fact that Jalen Saunders is only 5-foot-9 would scare away some teams, but the Broncos should take advantage if he ends up falling into their spot in the draft. The Broncos have experience with Wes Welker being as small as he is, so Saunders could develop into the slot receiver for the Broncos once Welker retires or goes to another team. The Broncos might even think about using him as a second slot guy to give them more weapons in the passing game.
4. Howard Jones, OLB, Sheppard
This is one player who is not well known because of the lack of knowledge about Sheppard University, but he does have great height and arm length for a linebacker. He would be a great addition opposite Von Miller if the Broncos decide to take a chance on the unknown linebacker.
3. Ryan Groy, OG, Wisconsin
A player who was selected as a member of the 2013 All-Big 10 Second-team, Ryan Groy has a lot of upside. One of his strengths is his ability to slow down the pass rushers which could be beneficial to protecting Peyton Manning. This is one player the Broncos should look into drafting in the later rounds.
2. Cornelius Lucas, OT, Kansas State
Another tackle who could help protect Manning, Cornelius Lucas was a second-team All-Big 12 player selection for the 2013 season. His arm length, which was measured at 36.75, could really benefit against pass rushers. The goal for 2014 is to protect Manning, so look for the Broncos to draft Lucas in the later rounds.
1. Tyler Gaffney, RB, Stanford
If Knowshon Moreno leaves via free agency, the Broncos should look into Tyler Gaffney to become part of the running back committee with Monte Ball. He is nearly the same kind of player that Moreno is with the ability to block and become a receiver in the field of play. And he can break tackles as well and is light on his feet. This is a running back the Broncos cannot pass up in the draft.