The 2005 NFL draft is a few days away and the Broncos should be looking at the defensive line position as an area of concern. During the off season, the Broncos signed defensive end Courtney Brown. Currently, Brown has more question marks than the Riddler in Batman. The Broncos also traded a fourth round draft pick to acquire Brown's teammate in Cleveland Gerard Warren. Warren didn't have nearly as bad of a season as Brown did. Then again, most people had better seasons than Courtney Brown. Warren had four and half sacks and thirty eight tackles, which is about half of the output Reggie Hayward produced last season.
The departure of Reggie Hayward to the Jacksonville Jaguars means the Broncos are in need of a quality defensive end. It didn't help when the Broncos traded running back of the moment Rueben Droughns to Cleveland for defensive lineman Michael Myers and Ebenezer Ekuban. The Broncos should have gone for quality, not quantity. Last season Ekuban and Myers numbers were dismal at best.
One sure thing about the Broncos defensive line is Trevor Pryce will be in a Denver uniform. Next season, Pryce should be back to his old ways tormenting offensive lines and going back to the Pro Bowl. A healthy Trevor Pryce gives quarterbacks nightmares. Too bad the new guys on the defensive line can't scare too many people. Thankfully there is a good crop of defensive lineman in this year's draft.
There are a few quality defensive ends in the draft and the Broncos should pick up one. David Pollack from the University of Georgia is the best bet. Pollack is considered the best defensive end in the draft. During Pollack's senior season he had fifty two tackles, twenty three of which went for a loss and recorded thirteen sacks. The Broncos can't pass up Pollack if he is still available by the time the 25th pick rolls around. Pollack would make an immediate impact on the Denver defense.
Another option for the Broncos is University of Wisconsin star Erasmus James. James ability to be quick-off-the-ball and pressure the quarterback should make him a great NFL player. During his senior season, James recorded thirty six tackles and eight sacks. Dan Cody out of Oklahoma could be a surprise pick in the later rounds as well and could help the Broncos as a pass rusher. CU Buffs fans will be glad to see him go after being tormented by him for the past four seasons.
Shaun Cody from the University of Southern California is considered the best defensive tackles in the draft. He has great size at 6-4, 295 pounds and is very explosive off the ball. During his senior year, Shaun Cody recorded forty five tackles and ten sacks. He also had thirteen tackles for a loss. The surprise of this years defensive tackles comes from Florida States' Travis Johnson. Johnson emerged as a star his senior year having fifty tackles and eighteen tackles for a loss. Johnson is very explosive and is great defending the run or the pass.
The Broncos must pick up a quality defensive lineman in this years draft. Drafting a defensive lineman is key to the Broncos future success because Trevor Pryce isn't getting any younger and the recent pickups from Cleveland have yet to prove anything within the confines of Dove Valley.
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