An unnamed NFL general manager disclosed to The Athletic that the Denver Broncos are planning to select North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance with the No. 9 overall pick of the 2021 draft.
“They’ll take Trey Lance if he’s there,” the anonymous GM predicted to NFL reporter Mike Sando. “I think you have five quarterbacks going in the top 10.”
Preparing for the actuality, Denver reportedly will send offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur to Lance's second Pro Day, slated to take place Monday. Shurmur and team director of pro personnel A.J. Durso were in Columbus on Wednesday to scout Ohio State signal-caller Justin Fields' second Pro Day.
New Broncos general manager George Paton attended both Lance's and Fields' inaugural throwing sessions last month. Paton, however, skipped the latter's latest showing and presumably will be absent from the former's as he conducts staff-wide draft meetings with the annual offseason spectacle now 15 days away.
Lance and Fields are projected to be taken within the top-10 on April 29, potentially as high as No. 4 overall. That spot currently is held by the Atlanta Falcons, who may or may not stay put to secure Matt Ryan's successor. QBs Trevor Lawrence, Zach Wilson, and Mac Jones are tentatively expected to go No. 1, No. 2, and No. 3 to the Jacksonville Jaguars, New York Jets, and San Francisco 49ers, respectively.
For the Broncos to have a shot at either without moving up, they will need Atlanta, Detroit (7), and Carolina (8) to bypass the position and hope desperate organizations like New England (15), Washington (19), and Chicago (20) don't find an aforementioned trade partner.
After which point Paton likely wouldn't look this gift horse in the mouth.
“It is in play for quarterback," he confirmed of the Broncos' first-round choice. "Yes, I'll be out a lot looking at all positions, but definitely quarterback."
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