2023 NFL Draft: Reviewing team needs in the AFC West

Kansas City Chiefs (Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)
Kansas City Chiefs (Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports) /
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NFL Draft
Russell Wilson, Denver Broncos (Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports) /

2023 NFL Draft: Denver Broncos

The Denver Broncos have needs across the board and are short their own first round pick, dealt to Seattle in the Russell Wilson trade. They did recoup a first rounder from Miami in the trade that sent Bradley Chubb to South Beach, but it has to sting that their own first rounder ended up being the fifth overall pick. With needs on both sides of the ball, a few areas stand out.

Top Needs: OT, IOL, RB

First and foremost, the Broncos need to do a better job of protecting Russell Wilson. In his first season in Denver, Wilson took 55 sacks, tied for the league lead.

The performance of the offensive line has left much to be desired, but on top of that, there are several potential departures in free agency this offseason. The list includes starting left guard Dalton Risner and tackles Cameron Fleming (15 starts), Calvin Anderson (7 starts), Billy Turner (7 starts), and Tom Compton. Improving the offensive line needs to be the number one priority in Denver.

The Broncos could also look to add a running back in April. Second-year back Javonte Williams suffered a significant knee injury in Week 4 this year and his recovery timetable is unclear. What was expected to be a breakout season for Williams quickly became trouble for a Broncos offense mostly lacking playmakers. Latavius Murray, Chase Edmonds, Mike Boone, and Marlon Mack are not the solution to anyone’s problems. A healthy Williams return is ideal for Denver, but a second weapon in the backfield is needed regardless.

The Broncos could also eye an EDGE option (after trading Bradley Chubb at the deadline), an addition to the linebacker corps, or help in the secondary at both cornerback and safety.