Denver Broncos
(David Zalubowski/AP Photo)

The Denver Broncos are one of the most hyped up teams in the NFL this offseason, and rightfully so. They finished 7-9 last season with some not so great QBs leading the team. However, with Drew Lock fully healthy and with some NFL experience, many fans are predicting a deep playoff run. In order to do that, however, the Broncos have some obstacles to overcome, the largest one being the Super Bowl champions, Kansas City Chiefs within their division. Will the Broncos be able to regroup in 2020? Or will Drew Lock be unable to lead this hyped up team to victory?

3 Position Battles To Watch:

Running back: Melvin Gordan, Phillip Lindsay,

Although the Broncos have a pro bowl running back in Phillip Lindsay, they still picked up Melvin Gordan out of LA. These two excellent backs will have to compete in the preseason to see who the premier back for the Denver Broncos will be. In his 2019 Gordan ran for 612 yards and 8 TDs with 3.8 yards per carry. Lindsay on the other hand ran for 1011 yards and 7TDs with 4.5 yards per carry. Although Lindsay has proven himself to be an excellent RB1, Gordon has a lot of potential to be a top tier running back if placed under the right offensive system.

Center: Lloyd Cushenberry, Austin Schlottmann, Patrick Morris

In the 2020 preseason Denver Broncos veteran center, Connor McGovern left for New York. In 2020 the Broncos will attempt to fill this hole on the offensive line. The Denver Broncos selected Lloyd Cushenberry, out of LSU, with their 3rd round pick. To compete with Cushenberry the Broncos have Austin Schlottmann and Patrick Morris. Both Morris and Schlottmann don’t have much NFL experience at the center position, however, what little experience they do have is an edge over the more physically talented Cushenberry.

Left Tackle: Garett Bolles, Elijah Wilkinson

John Elway stated that the starting left tackle position will be an open competition between former 1st round pick Garett Bolles, and former UDFA Elijah Wilkinson. This was odd as Bolles has played in every offensive snap for the Broncos in 2019 and is a talented lineman. However, Bolles’ problem is in his tendency to commit excessive amounts of egregious fouls. Wilkinson is not as physically talented as Bolles but has had played clean games his entire career, rarely giving away penalties. If the coaches at training camp believe that Bolles’ tendencies make him a liability, Wilkinson may start week 1. That however is unlikely.

Ready To Break Out: Noah Fant

Noah Fant proved himself to be the best tight end in the 2019 draft with his performance in his rookie season. He caught 40 passes for 560 yards and 3 TDs with below-average QB play and improved vastly when Drew Lock took over at QB. If Noah Fant has decent quarterback play all season, he should improve his play vastly. Although Lock did not prefer his tight ends in the red zone, he did have an affinity towards Fant during chunk plays while going up the field. If Fant improves his red-zone presence and blocking ability, he will become a top tier tight end in the league, after only a few years in the league.

Rookie To Watch: Jerry Jeudy

Jerry Jeudy amazed in his final season at Alabama with 1200 yards and 10 TDs with 77 receptions. As Denver’s first-round pick Jeudy has a lot of expectations. He will also have to compete with 2nd round pick K.J. Hamler out of Penn State. All of these expectations and competition will either push Jeudy to excel or make him crumble. Either way, this phenom will be a great story to look out for during the 2020 NFL season.

Fantasy Sleeper: Drew Lock

After recovering from his injury in 2019, Drew Lock impressed many with his spectacular quarterback play. With over 1000 yards and 7 TDs in only 5 games, Lock finished the season with a QBR of 89.7. All of this was done with the Denver Broncos’ limited weapons. Now that Lock had more weapons on the field with Jerry Jeudy, K.J. Hamler, and a more experienced Noah Fant, nothing is stopping him from slinging the ball across the field. With the improved backfield that includes Phillip Lindsay and Melvin Gordan, Lock will have better check down opportunities and more conservative defenses. Drew Lock has everything going right for him this offseason and can very much be QB1 on your fantasy roster.

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