Denver Broncos: Should They Draft Forrest Lamp?
Will the Denver Broncos decided to improve their offensive line by selecting Forrest Lamp with their first-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft?
The Denver Broncos have the 20th pick in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft, which means a lot can happen between now and when it’s their turn to pick, making it almost impossible to accurately forecast their draft pick. Forrest Lamp is considered one of the top offensive linemen in this year’s draft and there’s a very good possibility that he will be still on the board when it comes time for the Broncos to submit their draft selection.
Denver took advantage of free agency to beef up their offensive line by signing guard Ronald Leary who had 47 starts during his five-year tenure in Dallas and offensive tackle Menelik Watson who had 17 starts during his four-year stint in Oakland. Both players provide plenty of experience for the offensive line.
You can never have enough talent on the offensive line and it would be wise for Denver to invest in a few prospects to strengthen the interior of their line. Cultivating youth on the back end of the roster will be the most cost efficient way to build a dynamic unit in the future.
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Acquiring talent for the offensive line is a must, considering they have two inexperienced quarterbacks, Trevor Siemian and Paxton Lynch, who may be starting for the Broncos next year. The added protection for the young quarterbacks, could ease the transition for Denver at the quarterback position.
Lamp could be one of the key building blocks to establishing a dominate offensive line in the near future. He was a dominate force at Western Kentucky and has a skill set that can translate over to the NFL level. Lamp was one of the most athletic offensive line prospects at the combine, testing well in the 40-yard dash, bench press, broad jump and three cone. He’s also very sound with his technique, always implementing proper hand placement and leverages while making his blocks. His versatility would provide a lot of value to the team since he’s able to play almost every position on the offensive line from tackle to guard.
There are not many downsides to his game, but there are concerns about his size and his ability to power through defensive linemen while run blocking. He’s more of a cerebral athlete than a road grading run blocker.
Stocking up on talented offensive linemen worked for the Dallas Cowboys when they utilized three first-round picks (Tyron Smith, Travis Frederick and Zach Martin ) to nab high quality talent for their line. Implementing what the Cowboys did for their franchise could serve dividends for Denver’s offense, providing added protection for the quarterbacks and a top notch run game.
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Building teams from the inside out is always a smart move, because it supplies a solid base of talent to build around. For example, it’s easier for a young quarterback to develop if he has one of the top offensive lines in the league blocking for him. Also, it creates a lot of versatility at the running back position, because the creases will be a lot larger for the running backs to run through.
The world is Denver’s oyster when it comes to their first-round pick, because they have a lot of options to sift through. They can burn another pick on a quarterback or spend their pick on a defensive player. Offensive line is not the only position they will be looking at in this draft and there’s a good chance they go another direction with their pick.
Keep in mind, there’s a chance that he won’t be there when it’s Denver’s turn to pick, making the debate whether they should draft Lamp or not innocuous. The Broncos could also trade back or trade up for another prospect in the draft, causing them to not be able to select him.
Lamp seems like a very safe prospect due to his ability to play multiple positions and due to his successful track recored at Western Kentucky. He’s considered the top guard in the draft, and could be a steal at the 20th pick if he lives up to his potential. If Denver feels like they need to add pieces to their offensive line, then there will be a very good chance that Lamp will be wearing a Denver Broncos uniform next season.