As the Denver Broncos move on from a rollercoaster 2023 season, the focus shifts towards rebuilding and refining through the 2024 NFL Draft. With a series of strategic picks and a vision aimed at long-term success, Denver looks to capitalize on a draft class brimming with talent and potential. This mock draft explores how the Broncos can address their needs across seven rounds, injecting youthful energy and skilled prospects into their roster to ensure a brighter future.

Denver Broncos' 2023 Season Recap

After stumbling out of the gate with a 1–5 record, the Broncos found their stride in 2023. They rattled off five consecutive victories for the first time since 2015. That marked an improvement over their 5–12 record from the year before. Despite this mid-season rally, the team faltered down the stretch. They won just two of their last six contests. This slump extended their streak to seven straight losing seasons and saw them miss the playoffs for the eighth year in a row. Quarterback Russell Wilson, coming off his least productive year in 2022, showed signs of improvement. Eventually, however, he was sidelined in favor of backup Jarrett Stidham for the final two games. Wilson was released this offseason and subsequently signed a five-year contract with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

In response to their near-miss of the postseason, the Broncos' approach to the 2024 Draft must be both aggressive and strategic. They aim to fill crucial gaps that hindered their performance last year. With an eye on both immediate impact players and developmental prospects, Denver can lay the foundation for a return to their winning ways.

Jarrett Stidham watching Russell Wilson head out an exit door Denver Broncos

Draft Context

The Broncos face numerous needs across the board. It all starts, of course, with the quarterback position. Currently relying on quarterbacks Jarrett Stidham and Ben DiNucci, it's almost certain they will be evaluating their options with their 12th overall pick. Enhancements at tight end would also benefit whoever assumes the quarterback role. This is particularly true as the Broncos concluded 2023 with the least receiving yards from their tight ends.

Defensively, the Broncos also face widespread needs, particularly along the defensive line. That has struggled since trading Bradley Chubb in 2022. Focusing on interior defensive linemen might be a priority after their defensive tackles ranked 28th in pass-rush effectiveness last year.

Here we will look at the rookie prospects that the Denver Broncos might pick up in our 7-round 2024 Mock Draft.

Pick No. 12: Laiatu Latu, EDGE, South Carolina

After recovering from a career-threatening neck injury in 2021, Latu emerged as the most effective pass rusher in college football over the last two seasons. His hand technique is exceptional — quick, precise, and purposeful. Latu has mastered a wide array of pass-rush moves and counters that seem instinctive to him. He plays as a versatile edge defender, evenly splitting snaps between the left and right sides. He can also alternate between two- and three-point stances. Sure, he is only an average athlete with arm length below the 50th percentile. However, he could benefit from gaining mass and strength to enhance his anchoring and tackling abilities.

Pick No. 76: Spencer Rattler, QB, South Carolina

Spencer Rattler's journey at Oklahoma was a mix of highs and lows, but he matured significantly at South Carolina. He thrives in a shotgun formation and spread offenses. His arm strength is sufficient for the NFL, although not elite. Rattler maintains solid fundamentals, particularly in his lower body mechanics. Despite facing significant pressure in 2023, his pocket awareness is NFL-ready. He understands defensive coverages well, although he sometimes struggles to spot linebackers and safeties.

Former Oklahoma/South Carolina QB and game Most Valuable Player Spencer Rattler (2) answers questions during the Reese's Senior Bowl post game press conference
Gregg Pachkowski / / USA TODAY NETWORK

Pick No. 121: Kris Abrams-Draine, CB, Missouri

Kris Abrams-Draine began at Missouri as a wide receiver and even played quarterback during his senior year of high school. He transitioned to cornerback in his sophomore year at Missouri. That's where he has been a starter on the outside for the past two seasons. Since 2021, he has accumulated seven interceptions and 34 forced incompletions. Abrams-Draine is a strong athlete with adequate speed, fluid hips, and explosive agility in direction changes. His slighter build limits his use in press coverage, but he excels in off-coverage and zone.

Pick No. 136: Mohamed Kamara, EDGE, Colorado State

Mohamed Kamara's measurements are unusual for an edge rusher. He stands just 6'1, falling below the fifth percentile in height for his position. However, this gives him an advantage in exploding from a low, powerful stance using a bull rush. Of course, his shorter arms limit his ability to engage and disengage from blockers. Nonetheless, he is powerful and displays relentless energy.

Pick No. 145: Theo Johnson, TE, Penn State

Theo Johnson offers considerable size at tight end. His long arms benefit him both in blocking edge rushers and in catching passes. He also has decent speed for vertical routes up the seam. Johnson primarily excels as an inline blocker and receiver in heavy formations, although his blocking can sometimes lack lateral movement.

Pick No. 147: Christian Jones, OL, Texas

Christian Jones began his athletic career in soccer. He only switched to football in his junior year of high school as a defensive end before moving to offensive tackle. After six years and 48 starts at Texas, his experience is evident in his understanding of leverage, angles, and hand techniques. His long reach helps him to effectively block linebackers. He is agile enough for zone-blocking schemes but needs to improve his footwork and avoid bending at the waist in pass protection. His power is adequate but not exceptional.

Pick No. 203: Beau Brade, S, Maryland

A local from Howard County, Maryland, Brade has been seen as a potential second-round pick. However, we predict a later selection. He was a standout at Maryland, starting every game in the last two seasons and leading in tackles both years. Last season, he served as team captain and was named All-Big Ten honorable mention.

Pick No. 207: Jase McClellan, RB, Alabama

In high school, McClellan rushed for 1,599 yards as a sophomore despite missing six games due to injury and followed that with 2,073 yards and 47 touchdowns as a junior. Although capable of handling a heavy load, his college use was limited, partly due to a torn ACL in 2021. In 2023, he managed 1,027 total yards and eight touchdowns from 195 touches.

This mock draft is meticulously designed to strengthen key areas of the Broncos' lineup, aiming to establish a solid foundation for sustained success and continuous development in the competitive NFL landscape.