DENVER — If we’re closing or postponing skiing, graduation, The Masters, The Broadmoor's East Course, the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, "Top Gun: Maverick," it’s time to dump the bad stuff, too.
Hair loss: canceled. Wrinkles and potholes too. Counting birthdays after your 30s, no more. The Patriots getting all the calls — canceled. “Guac is extra. Is that OK?” Permanently canceled.
The NFL draft has not been canceled. Today is Monday, April 13, I think, and the draft is still April 23-25. That commish Roger Goodell will announce the picks from a basement is perhaps the clearest sign of our coronavirus times.
The Broncos may choose to postpone their first-round pick, the 15th overall selection. On four occasions, John Elway has elected to move back in the first round, including last year when he jumped back from No. 10 to No. 20 to land tight end Noah Fant and a pair of picks. With 10 picks spread across seven rounds — five picks among the first 100 (an Elway-era first) — expect more moving and shaking from the Broncos boss.
The biggest surprise would be staying put.
This would be the fifth time the Broncos make the No. 15 pick, the most of any spot in the opening round. They’ve been very good there, if not great: Tom Glassic (an offensive lineman who played 105 NFL games), Dennis Smith (the super safety who played 184), John Mobley (a linebacker Vic Fangio would have adored, as Mobley also was from Pennsylvania) and Deltha O’Neal (a cornerback who made it to a Pro Bowl, but not to a second contract, with the Broncos).
Three of the four No. 15 picks made Pro Bowls as Broncos. Now do that again.
And while we’re at it, cancel dogs getting old, Nuggets and Avalanche blackouts on Comcast, hangovers, mosquitoes, plastic golf tees and plans to postpone the economy long-term. Health is important, and part of good health is having a job.
I have two preferences with this Broncos draft. Both are negotiable. One, for the Broncos to move back from No. 15 to draft Kenneth Murray, a linebacker from Oklahoma who idolizes Ray Lewis, and add another second-round pick to fill another hole. Two, stay put (or move up) to take Iowa tackle Tristan Wirfs, a 6-foot-5, 325-pound wall who was a high school state champion wrestler in the state of Iowa.
Wrestling’s a big deal in Iowa. Wirfs would be a big deal for 23-year-old quarterback Drew Lock and the end of the Garett Bolles era. Yes, Lock’s arrival helped Bolles, and the quarterback was sacked only five times in five games. But Wirfs, the first freshman tackle to start for Hawkeyes coach Kirk Ferentz in over two decades, would be the left tackle in Colorado for a decade-plus.
Exact names aside, here’s hoping the Broncos stick with their draft plan of the past two years: high-production, high-character prospects who were considered leaders in their respective college locker rooms. Bradley Chubb, Courtland Sutton, Dalton Risner, Dre’Mont Jones and Lock fit the mold. It's about "what" more than "who."
In a draft rich with wide receivers, catching one in the first round is not necessary — unless it's Alabama's Jerry Jeudy, a no-brainer and future star.
The No. 15 pick is the only one in Broncos history to produce three Pro Bowlers or All-Pro selections. Now do that again, and cancel health-care workers buying their own drinks.