MMQB Mock Draft Predicts Broncos Make Bold First-Round Trade to Land a LB

Chad Jensen

'Tis the season for mock drafts. 

Mile High Huddle has released four 7-round Denver Broncos mock drafts, the last of which most of you have probably already read. In that last mock, the Broncos traded up from pick 15 to pick 11 in order to land Alabama WR Henry Ruggs III. 

The MMQB just released their latest first-round mock, and SI's Kevin Hanson also had the Broncos trading, only this time, it was a move back with Philadelphia to pick 21. The Eagles took Ruggs at 15. 

*Proposed trade: Philadelphia sends the 21st and 53rd picks to Denver for the 15th pick.

21. Denver Broncos: Patrick Queen, LB, LSU

One of the youngest prospects in the draft (he turns 21 in August), Queen played his best football down the stretch of LSU’s title run. While he’s a bit undersized, Queen is a three-down linebacker with outstanding speed who excels in coverage.

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What it Means

Broncos' GM John Elway is no stranger to maneuvering in the first round. Since arriving as the team's front-office czar, we've seen Elway trade up and trade back multiple times, the most recent of which was last year when the Broncos moved from pick 10 to pick 20, taking a couple of Pittsburgh's third-round picks for their trouble and nabbing TE Noah Fant. 

However, knowing what we do about the Broncos' pursuits in 2020, the idea of Elway trading back from 15 with Ruggs sitting right there is questionable. All due respect to Hanson and the MMQB, but the worst-kept secret in the NFL is the Broncos' desire, not only for a speedy wideout, but for Ruggs specifically. 

Now, there is the outside chance that Elway's purported compulsion for Ruggs at pick 15 is a smokescreen. It is the 'lying season' after all. 

But most of us on the local level view this as one of those instances of 'where there's smoke, there's fire'. The Broncos are likely to take a wideout in the first round and Elway, based on multiple accounts, has his heart set on Ruggs. 

The MMQB's trade-back would make more sense if all of the 'Blue-Chip 3' wide receivers were off the board by pick 15. In this mock, only Ruggs remained, which, again, is the Broncos' top target in the class. 

But assuming for a second that Hanson and the MMQB are right and that all of this Mile High wide receiver talk has been a smoke-screen, what would LSU LB Patrick Queen bring to the table? 

Quite a bit, actually. Queen is one of three linebackers in this class who would be ideal fits in the Vic Fangio defense. Queen brings sideline-to-sideline speed to the table, on top of multiple other coveted LB traits. 

As an athletic complement to Alexander Johnson, Queen would thrive in the Broncos' scheme. And if indeed the Broncos are sending up smoke signals to force WR-needy teams to try and trade up (and maybe offer Elway a king's ransom in picks), Queen is one prospect I wouldn't be upset to see land in Denver — so long as it wasn't at 15. That would be a little too rich for my blood. 

Make sure you check out Erick Trickel's 'Finding Broncos' breakdown on Queen and how he would fit in Denver. Another day, and another mock draft is in the online zeitgeist. Only three more weeks and fans will get the real thing as the NFL Draft is scheduled to kick off on April 23. 

Follow Chad on Twitter @ChadNJensen and @MileHighHuddle.

Comments (45)
No. 1-21
CUBuffinTX
CUBuffinTX

I guess my 1st question is what is the rest of the compensation ?

milehighguy
milehighguy

I would only trade back if the top three WRs are gone. With Ruggs sitting at 15?!? No way, Jose!!

CUBuffinTX
CUBuffinTX

I would do this without blinking an eye. Everybody is on the Ruggs train like its the only ride in town. As has been pointed out when he faced the better competition he was very mediocre. How about Queen, Reagor, and Shenault to play the slot. I would Joe Burrow that one with a big cigar and a long laugh

Brew77
Brew77

I don’t mind the trade down but it would take more than just a second rounder! A second and a fourth or fifth rounder would do it Denver did a similar trade last year and netted a second and a 2021 third. I wouldn’t take Queen though I would take Jalen Reagor then at 46 take Jeremy Chinn a hybrid S/LB and you would have an additional pick at 53 for other needs. The Chiefs have showed us the past 2 years you need to score points in this league and you can win a SB with a high scoring offense and a mediocre defense. Most people out there would say that a Denver’s defense is good enough to win a championship but the offense isn’t adding a LB doesn’t really help you but adding a dynamic receiver does. With that being said right now Denver has 5 picks in the top 100 if Ruggs is sitting there at 15 I think they won’t hesitate taking him unless the offer is too good to turn down.

Denverkewl
Denverkewl

All I can say is the team has not signed a WR in FA for a reason. The right guy can add power to the offense...none of us know which one they think is the best fit or if they feel others in the 2nd Round might do just as well... BUT, Ruggs does not have the performance others do have and performance has been a trend in their Drafts. If other teams see Ruggs the same way, he could drop like a rock...Then again, if they targeted Ruggs they want him to fall...right to them. So who the heck really knows...IF they think Ruggs is a risk then this smoke screen drives some other player[s] to them they want more or just as much...its a real chess and poker game all in one... Let us not forget everyone had them taking ILB at 10 last year and what happened?

broncofan55555
broncofan55555

According to the trade value chart, by giving up 21 and 53 Phillie would be giving up 1170 points to get 1050 point in value. That sounds like a good trade to me. Unless the Broncos have a burning desire to get Ruggs, I think this would be a good move to make. Grab Queen at 21. Then, use picks 46 and 53 plus other draft capital to trade up to grab Reagor and Shenault early in round 2. Take center Matt Hennessey in round 3. With Sutton, Reagor, and Shenault manning the WR room, the Broncos would give nightmares to opposing DCs for many years to come. Queen and AJ would be an awesome combo in the middle of the defensive field.

JS_9798
JS_9798

Another year and another media infatuation that Elway will go ILB. Every year the Broncos have had a chance at a top ILB (Devin Bush anyone?) and have passed. As long as Elway is in charge I highly doubt that off ball linebacker will be at the top of the board.

Gandalf the orange
Gandalf the orange

With three 3rd round picks, denver should be using those picks to move up, not down, if they want a player. They have lots of picks. Use those picks to get quality picks.

Rideordiedbfan
Rideordiedbfan

I love it. Take mims in the 2nd and stake up!

Sinceiwasalilboy
Sinceiwasalilboy

Ya, but......can’t help but wonder why we didn’t nab a WR in free agency? Would this not have been the case if there was only 1 blue chip receiver available in the top 15? Hmmmmm!

Another thing.....no one is talking about how much damage an explosive receiver can cause even if he only tallies 600-800 yards year. This is how T. Hill started, yes? Quality of a play (catch) may supersede overall quantity of said play.

Jman75
Jman75

This time last year Bush was a bottom of the first round, and in the last month he shot up the boards. Also elways desire for Lock was a “worst kept secret” , yet he passed over him twice .

I like Queen a lot, and more than Murray because of his coverage ability, but I’d rather Ruggs

Gmancan03
Gmancan03

I like it! If they did trade up? It would need to be for Simmons. This wr class is so deep we could pick 2 in the first 4 rounds and solidify our wr room. Plus get a top ol and corner!

Gmancan03
Gmancan03

We need speed, speed, speed! Trading back and getting queen, plus end up with 2 wr sub 4.4 and 2 corner sub 4.4. We would be ready for KC and retake our division!

broncofan55555
broncofan55555

How about instead of grabbing Queen the Broncos take Mims in round 1 and either Shenault or Reagor in round 2 with #46 plus additional trade capital? Grab Chinn in round 2 as well with #53 or instead maybe add some additional trade capital and take one of the top centers. That makes a lot more sense to me than spending a ton of draft capital on one of the big 3 WRs.

Jimrichard
Jimrichard

Its true those big 3 WR's use a lot of draft capital however I have seen some drafts that project 5 or even 6 Wr's taken in the first round. If they trade back he Broncos might still have to use their 1st rd pick on a WR and not even get the better of the 2nd tier they would like. Still there should be some speed left at 21 but I don't see it happening. Ruggs or less likely Juedy at 15 is still the money bet just no sure thing.

Mr. Pioneer
Mr. Pioneer

The only way we trade down is if Ruggs is off the board. Denzel Mimms, The ASU kid, Reagor, and others will all be available later. If Ruggs is there at 15...he's a Bronco.

broncomarco
broncomarco

This would be the most ridiculous wast of a number one draft choice imaginable. The team needs, in this order: A wide receiver, an offensive tackle, a cornerback, and center, and THEN, perhaps, a linebacker.

Daywalker5280
Daywalker5280

Love it. In this mock, we get Raeger (WR) and Niang (OT) in the 2nd round. The 3rd round picks are questionable, but the first three picks fill the two biggest holes and give us some hope against Kelce.

Jefffrey55
Jefffrey55

Queen or McKinney. Trade up with new 2nd plus and get Mims.

broncofan55555
broncofan55555

Chilly, I am not suggesting taking Mims at 15. In my suggestion I was following the article's proposal of trading out of 15 to 21. There take Mims and use the extra draft capital gained (I mentioned #53 as per the article) from trading down to go after another WR AND either a center or Chinn in round two. Actually, that would be almost a mirror image of what the Broncos did last year that was so successful. They went from 10 to 20 and got Fant and then traded up to grab Lock with the round two capital derived from trading down. It was a spectacular success. I am suggesting a similar repeat though the draft capital derived would not be nearly as rich because they would be trading down from 15 instead of 10.

ArmourHotDog
ArmourHotDog

Pass on Shenault. We don't need another receiver with potential who can't get on the field.


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