What Isaac Yiadom trade means for Broncos cornerback depth

DENVER, CO - DECEMBER 30: The Denver Broncos celebrate an interception by Isaac Yiadom (41) of the Denver Broncos during the first quarter. The Denver Broncos hosted the Los Angeles Chargers at Broncos Stadium at Mile High in Denver, Colorado on Sunday, December 30, 2018. (Photo by Joe Amon/The Denver Post)

Farewell, Isaac Yiadom, we hardly knew Ye.

Yiadom, who was drafted in the third round back in 2018, never really lived up to the hopes of being a starting cornerback. He was slow to learn the Broncos defense and had a difficult time adapting to the NFL’s big-time receivers.

On Wednesday night, the Broncos traded away Yiadom to the New York Giants for a mere 7th-round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.

In 2018, Yiadom played in 13 games and started one, picking off a pass. But he also allowed 58.8% of passes to be completed against him while giving up three touchdowns. Last year, there was a slight improvement as he showed flashes of a player who could be a starter in this league. But in eight starts last year, his completion percentage allowed rose to 70.4%.

While many, including likely John Elway who drafted Yiadom, hoped he would turn a corner this year, the experiment came to an end thanks to a bevy of talented corners on the roster.

Without a doubt, AJ Bouye and Bryce Callahan are Nos. 1 and 2 respectively, while there’s a battle behind them. Before his trade, Yiadom was presumably the favorite as the No. 3 guy. Now, it’s De’Vante Bausby, Davontae Harris, Duke Dawson and newcomer Essang Bassey all fighting on the back end. That doesn’t even include this year’s third-round pick, Michael Ojemudia, who’s been a bit banged up during camp.

Clearly, Vic Fangio and Elway are confident in the other young corners to be able to cut ties with Yiadom just before the season kicks off.

Of course, Fangio has said none of the backups have edged out the others as of yet, and that can be a good thing and a bad thing at the same time. Especially when considering there are no preseason games this year to help the Broncos coaching staff help sort it all out.

Expect the Nos. 3 and 4 cornerbacks to shuffle around a bit, especially early on in the season as the coaching staff can see how the guys are doing against live opponents. For now, it seems Bausby has a slight lead to either play outside opposite of Bouye or slot, depending on how they want to use Callahan. But stay tuned.

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