Denver Broncos: Justin Fields
The Denver Broncos probably should take a quarterback with the ninth overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. The team did just use early draft capital on Drew Lock two years ago but it is clear that Lock is the one holding the team back.
Denver has great weapons, a solid defense that will always overperform because of the coaching staff and more draft picks later in the draft to help fill in some of the holes. Sure, the team could use someone like Patrick Surtain, but is that really going to raise the ceiling of this team?
The Broncos need a good young quarterback to keep up with Justin Herbert and Patrick Mahomes. I think we have seen enough of Drew Lock to conclude that he is not someone who is going to keep up with the quarterbacks in the AFC West, even Derek Carr.
The most likely quarterback that should fall to Denver at nine is Trey Lance, who is still an exciting quarterback prospect. Lance may take some time to develop, though, and definitely is not as good of a quarterback prospect as Justin Fields.
Fields has been hyper-analyzed during this draft process and personally, I have him as the second-best quarterback in this drat class. He has two very important elite traits: a rocket arm and insane athleticism. He did not have a problem progressing past his first read in college and the problems he does have as a prospect can easily be fixed with NFL coaching.
The discussion around Fields reminds me a lot of the discussion around Justin Herbert. The biggest drawback of Herbert was his “it factor” and he began to become hyper-analyzed with blanket statements. A narrative started then everyone repeated said narrative.
That is happening with Fields and the more it happens, the more it seems possible that he could be the fourth or fifth quarterback taken. That would be less than ideal for the LA Chargers.