Will Drew Lock rack up big numbers in his first full season as the Broncos' starting quarterback? Will Von Miller have a career year after a disappointing 2019 season? Will Bradley Chubb bounce back from a torn ACL and best his rookie-year sack total?
Those questions could decide the fate of the Broncos' 2020 season, and they're also ones that CBS Sports' Patrik Walker believes will be answered in the affirmative.
The first of the three predictions is that Lock will rack up at least 4,000 passing yards and 25 touchdowns, which Walker says is achievable due to the weapons available to Lock.
"He'll have another training camp under his belt and another weapon has been added in highly-touted rookie Jerry Jeudy, who stands to be a major shot of adrenaline to the WR corps and offers a strong complement to the already proven Courtland Sutton and a rising tight end in Noah Fant," Walker writes. "Toss in newly-signed running back Melvin Gordon to help keep defenses honest and there's no reason Lock shouldn't be able to tap dance around the 4,000-yard mark as an NFL sophomore."
The second and third predictions — that Miller will set a new career high in sacks and that Chubb will have 15 sacks and make his first career Pro Bowl — are largely tied to each other. With a healthy Chubb back in the lineup, Miller should face fewer double-teams and have a better shot to rack up more sacks than the eight he recorded in 2019.
"Miller is only one season removed from having posted 14.5 sacks in a year when Chubb nearly matched him -- as a rookie -- with 12 of his own," Walker writes. "Likely feeling disrespected by some pass rush rankings this offseason, having a renewed sense of focus (not that he ever lost it) after having recovered from a COVID-19 scare, and feeling like he needs to remind the world of what he's capable of -- don't bet against Miller in 2020."
It might be a little too much to expect these to all come true, but if even just two come to fruition, the Broncos as a team should become a contender in short order.
Below the Fold
One offseason move that's been flying a bit under the radar for the Broncos is the signing of guard Graham Glasgow, which may not be as exciting as drafting Jerry Jeudy or signing Melvin Gordon III. However, it could be just as important; Pro Football Focus ranked him the 20th-best interior offensive lineman heading into the 2020 season. "Playing all three positions is one thing," PFF's Ben Linsey wrote. "Playing them well is another entirely, but that's exactly what Glasgow did, earning PFF grades of 70.0 or higher in each of 2017, 2018 and 2019 — a well-balanced effort with above-average play as a pass-protector and run-blocker."
On the other side of the line, new Bronco Jurrell Casey told media on Tuesday why he felt comfortable playing this season amid novel coronavirus concerns. "I definitely feel safe," Casey said, as documented in Mike Klis' report for 9NEWS. "I think the processes that have been put in place, the protocols, it's definitely been beneficial so far. The way they test and the way we've been keeping ourselves away from each other, keeping our hygiene up -- that's been key so far. We've been doing great with this organization, I can't speak for others around the league but I know here with the Broncos we've been doing the right protocols to keep ourselves and our guys healthy."