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BGN 2010 Mock Draft Pick #11 - The Denver Broncos

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With the eleventh pick in the 2010 BGN Draft, jaws1385 selects...

Rolando McClain - ILB, Alabama

I'm sure many Denver fans will be howling for Dez Bryant, but that may only happen if Brandon Marshall is traded and right now that prospect isn't looking too good. Plus, I don't see Josh McDaniels drafting a mouthy diva receiver to replace another one. The Broncos have some glaring needs on defense, primarily in their front 7, which they have been working to retool (they've already signed DT Jamal Williams to a 3-year deal).

Last year, they had some serious issues stopping the run, and Rolando McClain could certainly help with that. Rated as possibly the best linebacker in the draft, he's huge, at 6-4 and 250 lbs. and is a devastating hitter. He could step in right away, as Denver implements a 3-4 scheme similar to the one McClain played in for the national champion Crimson Tide. He would fill a hole left by the release of Andra Davis, and would also allow D.J. Williams to move to his natural position on the outside.

McClain finished his college career with 270 tackles (134 solo) and 8 sacks. In 2009 alone he amassed 105 tackles, and won the Butkus award as the top college linebacker. He'll be employed as a run-stopper, as his coverage skills are a little suspect, but that really doesn't matter because Denver has a talented backfield. Speed is an issue with him, as he ran a disappointing 4.69 40 at the combine, but he is big and strong enough to hold the point of attack, even against offensive linemen. He can shed blockers and blitz with the best of them, and his leadership skills are second to none.

Finally, he has a high football IQ; he is terrific at reading plays and is almost never out of position. This is a better choice for Denver than Dez Bryant, especially at this point. Youth leadership on the defense could prove to be invaluable; Dawk won't play forever.

Next on the clock will be whodie126 with the Miami Dolphins.

Previous picks: #1 Ndamukong Suh, #2 Russell Okung, #3 Gerald McCoy, #4 Sam Bradford, #5 Eric Berry, #6 Trent Williams, #7 Jimmy Clausen, #8 Bruce Campbell, #9 Bryan Bulaga, #10 Derrick Morgan