Though not as proficient as they were back in the days of John Elway and Terrell Davis, there seems to a fantasy gem or two in Mile High Country every season. That said, the Broncos dipped from 40 total touchdowns in 2010, down to just 36 TD last season. Part of the reason for the drop was due to a lack of talent. A crazy situation at quarterback didn't help much either. Now that Denver is Peyton's Place, let's see if any Broncos are worth corralling on Draft Day 2012.
Denver Broncos Quarterback Fantasy Options
Having been a fan of the NFL for over three decades now, it's difficult to remember a player like QB Tim Tebow doing so little – while still getting maximum attention. Tebow, who was anointed as the "Mile High Messiah" in many circles last season, produced some of the worst numbers by a starting quarterback in the entire history of the NFL.
Tebow Mania left town pretty quick though as Tim flew Air Gang Green all the way to the Meadowlands to join the New York Jets. Are you kidding me? We will have more on the "Terrific One" getting mashed in the Big Apple in an upcoming article.
Now some guy named Peyton is claiming to be the next John Elway in Denver. While yours truly is still a long way away from making up any Top Ten lists, I can say with certainty that Peyton Manning will not crack my Top 31 QB list. While we never wish injury on anyone anywhere, we are especially careful when it comes to Fantasy injuries – it's very bad Karma to wish injury on anyone.
That said, unless Manning had flexible titanium tubes – wrapped around his tubes, we don't see this ending good. In fact, we wish that one of the all-time great quarterbacks would have retired as a Colt. Then he could have stayed around to help rebuild the Franchise he gave birth to. What a whacked situation this whole Manning saga has been.
Broncos QB Analysis: Buyer beware with Peyton because there's not a lot behind him as a handcuff. Caleb Hanie flashed and crashed for the Chicago Bears, but landed the perceived backup role with a two-year contract. We will be shocked If the Broncos don't make a move for a QB on Day Two of the 2012 NFL Draft. Adam Weber is on a "reserve/future" contract as the Broncos' third QB at the time of writing.
Denver Broncos Running Back Fantasy Options
Once the strong suit of the Broncos offense, the running back position has turned into an Achilles heal in Denver. After a fairly impressive rookie season (170 FP) Knowshon Moreno has been a no-show recently. Injuries, along with ineffective running, have resulted in the former 12th overall draft pick posting just 197.1 FP over the past two seasons.
Moreno also found himself in the dreaded RB committee system as Willis McGahee joined the Denver backfield last season. In 15 games McGahee posted 155 fantasy points, but he failed to reach double digits in seven contests. An ACL tear ended Moreno's 2011 season in Week 10 and then he got busted in February for a suspected DUI - while driving a Bentley with a license plate that read "SAUCED".
Broncos RB Analysis: Having doubts that Moreno will ever be an NFL star, and given the fact that McGahee is a lightly used - but still 30-year old back, this is a situation with lots of red flags flying. Manning tossing the ball all over the yard would be an upgrade for McGahee, but he has only caught 41 passes in 46 games over the past three seasons. This is another buyer beware situation.
Denver Broncos Wide Receiver Fantasy Options
A starting quarterback who attempted just 271 passes in 14 games (completing 126 of them) is never a good thing for a wide receiver. That was the case in Denver last season as the Broncos scored just 20 total touchdowns via the pass. Eric Decker was the top wideout as he hauled in 44 receptions for 612 yards and eight scores. WR Eddie Royal (who has been fantasy irrelevant for most of his career) has headed for the beach to join the Chargers in San Diego.
A player I have been high on since his days as a Georgia Tech Yellow Jacket, WR Demaryius Thomas , has struggled with injuries since he was drafted as the 22nd overall selection in the 2010 NFL Draft. Thomas may have put his injury woes behind him as he posted 52.FP from Week 13 through 15. He then burned the Steelers with an 80-yard TD gallop in OT during the Wild Card weekend playoff action. Thomas, possibly more than anyone, is hoping Manning can stay upright all season.
Broncos WR Analysis: This situation is also murky as it hinges directly on the health of Manning. Remember, while every player is susceptible to injury on every play, Peyton went through at least three surgeries, over a very short span of time - in at least two different countries. That's damaged goods and if he goes down - so do Thomas and Decker. The risk / reward is a little less here due to the crowded WR market but step lightly and.
Denver Broncos Tight End Fantasy Options
Another area the Broncos once excelled in was their play at the tight end position – remember Shannon Sharpe in the good old Denver days? Dating back to the 2009 NFL season, the Broncos have finished 24th, 31st, and 2929 in tight end scoring.
Most of that can be attributed to former head coach Josh McDaniels as he shipped TE Tony Scheffler to the Detroit Lions and then used three receiver sets. Jacob Tamme has followed Manning to Mile High Country. Former Texan TE Joel Dreessen has also joined a suddenly crowed TE position in Denver. Manning knows a thing or two about throwing to the tight end position – I'm not going to say it again.
Broncos TE Analysis: The over league wideTE pool is as deep as it has ever been. We won't be reaching for Tamme based on his days in Indianapolis. Both Tamme and Dressen will make quality backup tight ends – and they will both be on the big board for a lengthy stay.
We will update our thoughts on the overall health of the Broncos as the preseason draws closer. At this point however, we see way too many red flags in Denver as we head towards NFL Draft Day 2012!