We’ve only looked at mock drafts across the Internet once since the end of the season — early in the process on February 13.
By today, many outlets have released their final mocks as the first round kicks off tonight at 6 p.m. MDT.
Without further ado, here are who the “experts” believe could be headed to Denver.
NFL Network’s Mike Mayock: Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis
“I’ve been trying to find a spot for him since pick No. 11 with the Chiefs,” Mayock writes. “The Broncos need a guy who can come in and play inside. At 350 pounds with movement skills like Haloti Ngata, Poe is the guy. On third down, when most defensive tackles are out of the game, Poe will be at his most effective.”
Video of Mayock discussing the pick can be found here.
ESPN’s Mel Kiper, Jr.: Kendal Reyes, DT, UConn
“The Broncos should take the best available interior defensive lineman, and I know they like Reyes, a great player against the run who fits any scheme,” Kiper writes.
ESPN’s Todd McShay: Doug Martin, RB, Boise State
NFL Network’s Michael Lombardi agrees with McShay on the Martin selection.
“Must find a back to be able to handle the workload,” Lombardi writes. “Martin is perfect for the new offense.”
Sports Illustrated’s Don Banks: Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State
“Nothing fancy about this pick,” Banks writes. “The Broncos need a wide-load type in the middle of their defensive front, and this is the year to get one in a first round that’s ridiculously deep at defensive tackle. Worthy isn’t as flashy as some of the other first-round DTs, but he’s got a solid body of game tape tucked under his mostly obscured belt.”
Sports Illustrated’s Peter King: Michael Brockers, DT, LSU
King believes the Broncos will — and should — pick Brockers. “Denver will be stunned that Brockers is still on the board. And delighted,” he writes. “The Broncos lost free agent defensive tackle Brodrick Bunkley to the Saints a month ago, and this raw but promising 6-5, 322-pounder could play nose or a more versatile tackle role. ‘On potential,’ one coach told me, ‘Brockers deserves to be a top 10 pick.’”
A video mock draft features several NFL Network analysts in a war room. Charles Davis picks for the Broncos, selecting Worthy.
NFL Network’s Albert Breer: Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
“The Broncos’ secondary needs help, and the fact that Kirkpatrick — who’s gotten knocked around lately by draftniks — falls here is a godsend for Denver,” he writes.
NFL Network’s Charley Casserly: Worthy
“They need to stop the run and Worthy will help,” he writes. Read a Q&A between DenverBroncos.com and Casserly here.
NFL Films’ Greg Cosell: Coby Fleener, TE, Stanford
“This is now Peyton Manning’s team,” Cosell writes. “The profile begins with offense, just as it did in Indianapolis. Certainly there are needs on the defensive side of the ball, but the pick here is Fleener, a more athletic Dallas Clark who can align all over the formation and get down the vertical seam. Seam routes off play action are critical in the Manning offense, and Fleener is a fluid route runner with deceptive speed. I remember Fleener beating Notre Dame corner Robert Blanton for a touchdown with a beautiful route, one that showed a great understanding of how to set up a defender. His ability to beat linebackers, safeties and even corners at times will give the Broncos’ offense the extra dimension Manning desires.”
CBSSports.com’s mock drafters all predict a defensive tackle will head to Denver in the first round.
Rob Rang: Worthy
Dane Brugler: Worthy
Pat Kirwan: Brockers
Pete Prisco: Worthy
Clark Judge: Poe
Will Brinson: Poe
First, Reuter’s choices:
1st round: Brockers
“Brockers might have enough upside to be picked earlier in the round, but the Broncos could land a much-needed big body inside if teams aren’t sure he can provide much of a pass rush.”
2nd round: Brock Osweiler, QB, Arizona State
“Yes, Osweiler’s young and inexperienced, but who better to sit behind for a year or two than Peyton Manning?”
3rd round: Chris Givens, WR, Wake Forest
“Manning (and Osweiler?) needs more impact receivers.”
4th round: Ben Jones, C, Georgia
“Manning couldn’t convince Jeff Saturday to come to Denver with him, so Jones will compete with J.D. Walton.”
4th round: Jonathan Massaquoi, DE, Troy
“Very good reserve pass-rush specialist who will make an impact early.”
5th round: Cyrus Gray, RB, Texas A&M
6th round: Trevin Wade, CB, Arizona
Finally, Schrager’s picks:
1st round: Devon Still, DT, Penn State
“Still had a tremendous 2011 campaign, finishing the season as one of the lone bright spots around Penn State football. The 2011 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, Still had 17.5 tackles for a loss a season ago and has a frame that’s been compared to Ndamukong Suh’s. Denver has a host of young talent at LB and DE, but the DT spot is still a hole in the defense. Still could slide in and make an impact immediately.”
2nd round: Harrison Smith, S, Notre Dame
3rd round: Dwight “Bill” Bentley, CB, University of Louisiana-Lafayette
4th round: Emmanuel Acho, LB, Texas
4th round: Ryan Broyles, WR, Oklahoma
5th round: Tony Dye, S, UCLA
6th round: Wade
DenverBroncos.com will have a live blog for tonight’s first round of the 2012 NFL Draft, which will run right up until the Broncos’ selection. At that point, we will switch over to complete coverage of the player the Broncos pick, including a story, photo gallery, quotes from the player, audio of his interview and more.
In the meantime, visit DenverBroncos.com’s 2012 NFL Draft page, a hub for all of the site’s draft coverage.
Thanks for sticking with us throughout the weekend.