Von Miller is coming off of January ACL surgery, and 2013 was a bit of a lost season for him due to that injury as well as an early-season suspension. Denver lost veteran pass rusher Shaun Phillips in free agency, but upgraded by replacing him with DeMarcus Ware, the soon-to-be 32-year-old Dallas castoff. On paper, Miller and Ware form a fearsome pass-rushing duo, but Kyle Montgomery of Mile High Report is planning ahead at the position.
|63. Broncos||Demarcus Lawrence, Boise State||DE||6'3||251||JR|
"Denver Broncos GM John Elway believes a team can never have too many pass rushers. He’s said as much, but his actions in both the draft and free agency support this. Whether it’s drafting Von Miller with the second overall pick despite having a proven pass rusher in Elvis Dumervil, or signing DeMarcus Ware this offseason, a team’s pass rush is an element a GM cannot ignore. Player for player, it’s a talent that cannot easily be taught -- you can either rush the passer, or you can’t.
Boise State’s Demarcus Lawrence certainly can (20.5 tackles for loss; 10.5 sacks in 2013), and after falling to the Broncos at 63, he’s simply too talented a player for the Broncos to overlook. This is another selection in the mold of Best Player Available, as Lawrence was the highest-rated remaining player based on SB Nation’s Big Board at No. 35. Getting that value at 63 is huge.
While it isn’t necessarily a position of need, it fits into the general theme of Denver’s 2014 offseason: after losing Super Bowl XLVIII 43-8, the Broncos are going "all in" on defense. Lawrence would be another chip in the stack."
Dan Kadar, SB Nation's NFL Draft analyst, has some thoughts and opinions to share on the Broncos' mock draft pick of Lawrence:
The Broncos have gotten two real steals in this mock draft. First it was the draft’s best pure guard in Xavier Su’a-Filo at 31. Getting Lawrence this late is another coup. The Boise State pass rusher grades out as a late-first to early second-round choice. For all the reasons people may like Georgia Tech’s Jeremiah Attaochu or BYU’s Kyle Van Noy, they should like Lawrence even more. He’s a dynamic, athletic pass rusher who looks fluid in space. Unlike those players mentioned above, Lawrence really knows how to convert his speed to power. That’s even something that UCLA’s Anthony Barr struggles with.
While there is some projection moving him from end to linebacker, he did play on his feet at times for Boise State. Regardless, he’s capable of playing end in a four-man front and linebacker in three-man fronts. He showed as much at Boise, finishing his career with 34 tackles for loss, 20 sacks and seven forced fumbles.
Kenneth Arthur of Field Gulls will make the final pick of the 2014 SB Nation NFL Writers Mock Draft at 3 p.m. ET.
|41||Scott Crichton||DE||Oregon State||6'3||273|
|43||Lamarcus Joyner||S||Florida State||5'8||184|
|1||31||Denver Broncos||Xavier Su'a-Filo||OG||UCLA|
|2||63||Denver Broncos||Demarcus Lawrence||DE||Boise State|