- Bill Williamson, ESPN Staff Writer
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Todd McShay knows what he is doing.
That’s why whom he sees the Denver Broncos selecting at No. 25 in his most recent mock draft was so fascinating. He has Denver taking quarterback Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill. It would be one of the stories of the draft. Denver has said Tim Tebow will go to camp as the starter. Taking Tannehill would mean the Broncos have other designs.
This would clearly be an unpopular pick in Denver, but the Broncos need to bring in competition for Tim Tebow, and not many free-agent quarterbacks will be willing to walk into a pressure-cooker situation alongside Tebow. If not here, Denver will be forced to wait until the 57th overall pick (assuming no trades are made), and at that point all of the top six quarterbacks will likely be off the board. Tannehill is intriguing because he's a good athlete (former wide receiver) who can operate some of the same option and rollout concepts the Broncos have implemented for Tebow. Denver would also have a legitimate prospect to develop if Tebow is unable to significantly improve his accuracy, so it seems like a good fit. However, there are also needs at corner, defensive tackle and tight end to consider.
Here my reasons why taking Tannehill could be a good idea and why it could be a bad idea.
Good idea: If Denver takes Tannehill is the first round it will be because it thinks he can be a star. Denver’s brass, beginning with football leader John Elway, scouted all the top prospects in last year’s draft but didn’t take any. The next quarterback Denver takes early is the quarterback the team thinks can be its future. Tannehill has the look of a potential standout quarterback and the prototype look of a potential pocket-passing star. He might be worth the choice.
Bad idea: This is not the time to take a quarterback in the first round. Tebow was taken at No. 25 just two years ago. The Broncos have to be sure that Tebow is not the starter of the future before they take his eventual replacement in the first round. Denver says it believes in Tebow enough to go to camp with him as the starter. If it doesn’t work out, Denver will be able to get a quarterback early in the 2013 draft. The Broncos have other, more pressing, needs in this draft. Taking a quarterback may be premature and possibly unnecessary.
What do you think? Should Denver draft Tannehill? Express your thoughts in the comment section below.