Yesterday, the Denver Broncos signed outside linebacker Shane Ray, their 2015 first round pick, to a four-year contract worth approximately $9M. Going into the draft, Ray was widely considered a top-10 talent by NFL Draft experts, but his stock plummeted, following a run-in with the law just a few days before the big event in Chicago.
Ray’s off-the-field faux pas caused him to drop to within striking distance for John Elway and the Broncos, who promptly orchestrated a deal with the Detroit Lions. The Broncos gave up their No. 28 pick, a 2015 fifth rounder, a 2016 fifth rounder and guard/center Manuel Ramirez to the Lions, in exchange for the No. 23 pick.
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One other fly in the ointment for Ray was a foot injury sustained in the Citrus Bowl, which prohibited him from working out at the NFL Scouting Combine. Wanting to be cautious with their shiny new first round pick, the Broncos kept Ray out of rookie mini-camp and the first week of organized team activities.
He did practice yesterday, albeit in a limited role, and will continue to do so throughout the week, provided there are no setbacks. With Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware under contract, the Broncos figure to have one of the fiercest pass rushing trios in the NFL.