Grading Denver Broncos' 2024 NFL Draft Class (2024)

The 2024 NFL draft is in the books, and the Denver Broncos improved their team in several key areas. Finding a franchise quarterback was a major necessity, and they did so with their first-round selection.

The Broncos added depth to the receiver room, dynamic pass rushers to the fold in the draft and via a blockbuster trade, and upgraded their running back room with a powerful player.

How did the class grade out as a whole? Here are my grades on each pick.

No. 12: Bo Nix | QB | Oregon

Tabbed as the guy for the Broncos throughout the process, Nix is an experienced player with an NCAA record 61 starts in his collegiate career. A possible franchise quarterback with exceptional leadership qualities and a high-level processor, Nix should be the starting quarterback on day one.

Nix is the most accurate quarterback in NCAA history in terms of completion percentage, posting a 77% completion percentage in his senior season for the Ducks. He throws with timing, anticipation and touch, allowing his receivers ample space to make plays after the catch. Though he could have possibly been drafted later in the class, the Broncos landed their guy to lead the franchise into the future.

My Grade: B

No. 76: Jonah Elliss | Edge | Utah

Elliss is a highly productive edge rusher with a wicked spin move and a high motor. His tenacity to make plays in the backfield shined on his tape, and he was in constant pursuit of the ball carrier even when the play worked away from his side of the field.

Adding a true “Batman” to the edge defender group was a priority for the Broncos, and while Elliss projects as a rotational player he has upside to stand in and start if he adds mass to his frame and refines his technical ability as a run defender. Adding Elliss to the mix could keep Drew Sanders in his off-ball linebacker role or signal a sign that Baron Browning or Jonathon Cooper could be let go in free agency following the 2024 season.

My Grade: B-

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No. 102: Troy Franklin | WR | Oregon

The Broncos opened up Day 3 with an unexpected trade-up, sending picks 121, 136, and 207 to the Seattle Seahawks to draft Franklin with pick No. 102. Adding explosive play potential from the receiving corps was drastically needed, and Franklin was one of the best in the class.

Franklin was tabbed as a potential top-50 selection, adding value to the selection despite the trade-up. Furthermore, Franklin was the top receiver for the Oregon Ducks and a favorite of Nix, catching 81 passes for over 1,300 yards and 14 touchdowns last season. He is a reliable target that adds familiarity to the fold, easing the transition for the Broncos’s new quarterback.

My Grade: A-

No. 145: Kris Abrams-Draine | CB | Missouri

A long and slender playmaker, Abrams-Draine comes in as competition for Damarri Mathis and Riley Moss as the starter opposite of Patrick Surtain II. Possessing elite speed, physicality, and scheme versatility, Abrams-Draine has starting-quality traits for the NFL level.

While he is a little bit thin in his build, he is a sound tackler who uses his length well in open space and he triggers downhill quickly. Abrams-Draime is solid in his press technique and can close on route runners in zone coverage, and he has a lot of ball production at the collegiate level.

My Grade: B+

No. 147: Audric Estimé | RB | Notre Dame

Estimé is a big and powerful running back who loves to grind his opponents into the ground with immense physicality. While not a true home run hitter in terms of explosive playmaking ability, Estimé has enough speed and tackle-breaking ability to grind out long runs with a “fall forward” mentality.

With Javonte Williams and Samaje Perine in the last year of their contracts, Estimé figures to be the long-term future of the running back position in Denver. He has the ability to carry the ball more than 20 times per game and is an elite-level short-yardage back, adding to his value to the offense.

My Grade: B+

TRADE: Jonathan Franklin-Myers | IDL | New York Jets

While not a draft pick, I’m adding Franklin-Myers to this list as it altered the list of needs to address in a major way. The Broncos have been looking for a difference-maker on the defensive line for a few years, and Franklin-Myers is one of the best interior pass rushers at the NFL level.

The Broncos traded a sixth-round pick in 2026 to secure Franklin-Myers while also re-working his contract in the process. He adds a quality run-stopping presence, consistent pass rush ability, and a cagey veteran to the mix on an underperforming defensive line.

My Grade: A+

No. 235: Devaughn Vele | WR | Utah

Long and explosive with a unique back story in his journey to the NFL, Vele projects as a straight line speed threat with great physicality. He will be 27 years old as a rookie after taking part in a LDS mission, but his play making ability in the red zone is an attractive asset.

Vele's physicality as a blocker could keep him in the fold for the long term, and his tools make him an intriguing special teams player on kickoff and punt coverage. The Broncos have a crowded receiver room, making Vele’s chances of making the roster a long shot.

My Grade: C

No. 256: Nick Gargiulo | OC | South Carolina

Gargiulo is a versatile offensive lineman with experience at multiple spots in the formation, though his best work came at center. The Broncos needed to add depth to the interior of their offensive line, and they took a shot on an experienced player with a late round selection.

My Grade: C-

Draft Class Grade

Overall, this year’s draft class projects as a building block for the future. Nix should be the immediate starter coming into camp even though the Broncos added former New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson via trade before the draft.

Elliss adds to a pass rush unit that struggled to get after the passer last season, and Franklin is stuck in the quagmire that is the wide receiver room. Estimé could push Samaje Perine off the roster as soon as training camp and eventually steal the starting job from Williams, and Abrams-Draine has a great shot to win a starting cornerback job.

While the early returns weren’t eye-popping, the Broncos finished out their draft class on a strong note and added value as the board fell.

Draft Class Grade: B+

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Grading Denver Broncos' 2024 NFL Draft Class (2024)


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