Broncos 7-Round Mock Draft: Prioritizing Racing Game Early


Washington cornerback Kyler Gordon reacts.

With the Denver Broncos out of the playoffs, it’s time to take a look at the 2022 NFL Draft. The Broncos will be in a good position to improve their roster on Draft night as they are armed with nine draft picks. .

The full order project slated for 2022 before week 18 can be found here, via Tankathon.

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Round 1 (11th overall): Tyler Linderbaum, C, Iowa

Yes, the quarterback is the Broncos’ greatest need, but it will be difficult to pass up a player as talented as Linderbaum. He is one of the most talented draft prospects for a center in recent memory.

Linderbaum would immediately improve the team’s pass protection. The Broncos offensive line allowed the highest rate of pressure in the NFL this season (28.6%).

Plus, he’s the best run blocker of this draft class. With Linderbaum in the fold, the Broncos can build their offense around Javonte Williams and the running game.

Round 2 (42nd overall): Kyler Gordon, CB, Washington

Patrick Surtain II was excellent in his rookie season, but the Broncos could still use some depth at the cornerback position. Kyle Fuller and Bryce Callahan are both slated to become free agents this offseason.

Gordon was phenomenal in passing coverage in 2021. When targeted he allowed no touchdowns and a passer rating of 49.1. Gordon and Surtain could make one of the strongest cornerback duos in the NFL.

Round 2 (62nd overall): Isaiah Foskey, EDGE, Notre Dame

After trading Von Miller to the Los Angeles Rams earlier this season, the Broncos may be looking to add another edge rusher to pair with Bradley Chubb.

Foskey has just had a huge season for the Fighting Irish. He had 11 sacks in 13 games. Foskey has proven himself against high level competition by winning sacks against Cincinnati and Oklahoma State.

Round 3 (77th overall): Chad Muma, LB, Wyoming

Linebacker Alexander Johnson is a fantastic backer for the run, but the Broncos lack a linebacker, who can excel at covering against tight ends and running backs.

Muma has the advantage of being a complete three-way linebacker. He has great instincts and above average athleticism. On cover, he’s allowed a touchdown and recorded three interceptions this season.

In addition, he is already a great defender of the race. He’s made 142 total tackles this season, which second in the FBS, and Pro Football Focus gave it a 91.1 run defense score.

Muma has all the tools to be a truly complete linebacker.

Round 3 (94th overall): Khalil Shakir, WR, Boise State

This is purely a “best available player” selection. Shakir is great with the ball in his hands and is dynamic after the landing.

At Boise State he played mostly in the slot, but at 6’0 ‘he should be able to line up on the outside more often.

Shakir would give the Broncos another weapon in a wide receiver pool with a lot of advantages.

Round 4 (114th overall): Zion Nelson, OT, Miami

The Broncos are placed in the left tackle with Garrett Bolles, but they need to find a long-term starter in the right tackle. Bobby Massie will become a free agent after the season.

Over the summer, Nelson was in the second round discussion, but was somewhat lost in the reshuffle. Nelson has excellent athleticism for a 6’5 ″ attacking tackle.

He’s improved every season in Miami. In 2021, he started on left tackle and played a career-high 892 offensive snaps. He stood firm in the protection of the passes allowing three bags and win a PFF pass block score of 85.9.

5th inning (143rd overall): Nick Cross, S, Maryland

Security isn’t a big need for the Broncos. Justin Simmons remains one of the best defensive backs in the game. Kareem Jackson will be a free agent, but this year’s free agent class is strong on safety. So the Broncos should have plenty of options, even if they don’t choose to re-sign Jackson.

Nick Cross is a three times honorable mention All-Big Ten. Like a junior, he recorded 66 tackles, three sacks and three interceptions.

He would give the Broncos some extra depth safely.

Round 5 (152nd overall): Bailey Zappe, QB, Western Kentucky

Even though the Broncos didn’t get a quarterback in the first round of this mock draft, they still end up with an interesting quarterback prospect. Zappe has thrown 62 touchdowns this season! Yes, you read that right.

Zappe’s 62 touchdowns established a new FBS record in one season. Joe Burrow is the only other quarterback in Division 1 history to throw at least 60 touchdowns in a single season.

In Western Kentucky, Zappe didn’t play the most grueling program, but when he faced a tough opponent, his production didn’t drop. He had 488 passing yards and three touchdowns against the state of Michigan, and he had 577 passing yards and four touchdowns against UTSA.

Zappe has been a guest of both the Senior Bowl and the NFL Combine. He could be an elevator throughout the pre-craft process.

7th round (238th overall): Chris Rodriguez Jr., RB, Kentucky

Chris Rodgriguez isn’t the flashiest running back on the gang, but he always seems to be taking extra distance. Rodgriguez has a great combination of vision and strength.

He is one of the most efficient running backs in the country. During his four seasons in Kentucky, he is on average 6.6 meters per range.

At this point in the draft he’s a good value pick, and he would serve as a good addition to Javonte Williams.

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