Nik Bonitto says his relentlessness makes him one of the best pass-rushers in this draft

Oklahoma's Nik Bonitto (11) tries to get to Texas' Casey Thompson (11) during the Red River Showdown college football game between the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the University of Texas (UT) Longhorns at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021. Oklahoma won 55-48.
Oklahoma's Nik Bonitto (11) tries to get to Texas' Casey Thompson (11) during the Red River Showdown college football game between the University of Oklahoma Sooners (OU) and the University of Texas (UT) Longhorns at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Saturday, Oct. 9, 2021. Oklahoma won 55-48. Ou Vs Texas

With their first pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, the Denver Broncos selected Nik Bonitto, an explosive and bendy pass rusher from the University of Oklahoma, that abused opposing quarterbacks during his time in Norman.

Falling all the way to the last pick of the second round might sting some, but Bonitto’s just happy to be a part of the Denver Broncos.

“There were conversations [that made me think I would be drafted higher] but at the end of the day, none of that matters,” Bonitto said, during his introductory press conference. “I’m here right now with great coaches—great guys upstairs. Great teammates. When I got that call, nothing else really mattered. It didn’t matter where it was. I was just happy that I got the call and now I’m with a great organization. I’m just ready to go to work for sure.”

Despite his fall, Bonitto still has special traits that can separate him from his peers.

“My relentlessness [and] my one-two [make me one of the best pass rushers in this class],” Bonitto told the Denver media, once prompted. “I have a good get-off as well. A lot of things you look for in good pash rushers and I feel like I have some of those traits. There’s still a long way to go to become one of those greats in the NFL and a guy that can be talked about as one of the best in the league. I’m working towards it, I have a lot of good traits, I just have to keep working.”

Bonitto’s special movement traits have even begun to earn him some comparisons to Denver’s most legendary pass rusher — Von Miller.

Though, Bonitto still believes that praise is too lofty.

“I’ve been watching him since I was young,” Bonitto said of the future Hall-of-Famer. “Really in the game, just watching him, he’s a guy I’ve always looked at as the pinnacle to what the great edge rusher is and he’s the standard of what I want to be. Just watching him, just seeing a lot of things he’s done in the game—things I want to accomplish. I know I’m going to have to work to get to where he’s at and to have the success that he’s had—the great things he’s done in this game. He’s definitely at the top of the list, for sure.”

It’s unlikely Bonitto will recreate what Miller brought to Denver, but that doesn’t mean he can’t become a beloved pass-rusher in his own right.

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