Former Broncos coach Dan Reeves believes that drafting the best player — rather than trying to fill a need at a specific position — is the team’s best bet for this month’s NFL draft.
In an interview with Gil Whiteley and Mark Jackson on Mile High Sports AM 1340 | FM 104.7, Reeves discussed the kind of players the Broncos should be looking for, and the difficulties in identifying an all-around great player.
“If you find one where something isn’t wrong, it’s special. The hard work that goes into it is an awful lot of time that people don’t really realize is spent. Trying to research and trying to find the right ones, and the one thing that you can’t tell is what their heart’s like,” Reeves said. “That’s one of the keys — how special is football to him, how do they treat people, all kinds of things that you look at outside of just what happens inside the white lines.”
Finding an good fit is hard enough, so Reeves believes in drafting that person — whether they fit a pressing need or not. “Drafting the best guy. I think sometimes that gets in the way of missing out on a really good player, and you never know exactly, injury-wise, where the needs are going to come from, and you know talent. Always, you’d rather be picking talent than picking for a need.”
Coaches eventually move on from their teams, but while they are coaching, they must still draft for a future that they may never see. Reeves has had his own experience with that. “Yeah, that’s true, and I wasn’t there for the future for some of my picks– that’s the way it is. It’s a difficult situation; you’re looking at an awful lot of things, and… needs sometimes get in the way of what the best talent is there, and vice versa. Sometimes the talent gets there, and you’re not really at a position that you’re going to need [him immediately], but you’re looking down the road to see exactly where you are, and all those things enter into it.”
For the Broncos, Reeves believes that an offensive lineman could make a huge impact. In the past, offensive linemen were not seen as important draft targets, but people now recognize their contributions to their teams. “That’s the key to your offense, other than the quarterback. I mean, if you go back to before free agency, probably the least-paid guys were offensive linemen. Then, all of the sudden, people started realizing how important they were, and look at the salaries of offensive linemen now — because they know how important they are.”
Click here to listen to the full interview with Dan Reeves, including his past relationships with his scouts, or listen to the podcast below.
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