The Broncos have gone with the player they had at the top of their draft board, as the team selected Texas A&M linebacker Von Miller with the #2 pick in Thursday’s draft. Miller is 6’3 243 pounds, and is a beast at the LB spot that could add some much needed force for John Fox and the Broncos young defense.
Here’s our scouting report on Miller:
Strengths: Elite first step suddenness in his pass rush; able to win the corner with ease. Fluid in his hips and footwork and plays with great balance. Able to bend the edge without a hitch in his movement as he closes down on the quarterback. Very good lateral agility and can stunt inside with his pass rush before protection can get properly set. Knows how to setup defenders wide and slant back inside before they can recover; very natural and instinctive with his rush technique. Will vary his technique based on competition’s abilities.
Plays fast but disciplined. Sound with his containment responsibilities in run support; plays the inside-out cutback lane before he releases into pursuit. Knows how to shuffle and trail the run play to the opposite side. Uses proper technique when taking on blockers. Good speed and can chase down ball carriers. Has very good quickness to settle into underneath pass coverage and stays light on his toes with fluid hips. Plays hard and maintains his pace throughout the game. Low-key with his disposition and differs to teammates. Team first player. Produced 28 sacks the past two seasons..
Needs Improvement: Lacks ideal size as a rush linebacker. Doesn’t have a wide base and thick bone structure to add too much more clean bulk. Gets washed out of plays frequently and can be run towards with no concern. Has trouble with tight ends and can be rag dolled by defensive ends against the run. Athleticism is better than his instincts at this point, but has shown improvement against the run and in coverage.
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Matt’s Take: Miller was the top player on the board for the Broncos, so this pick makes sense. John Fox is a guy that thrives on defense, so it makes sense for Denver to go that route in round one. Miller is a big guy that made plays all over the place at Texas A&M, and he seems ready to make the jump to the NFL. Here’s thinking Miller is going to make a run at the AFC Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2011.