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Mile High Morning: Where Broncos' addition of Russell Wilson ranks among offseason QB moves

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The Lead

The Broncos changed their season outlook when they made a blockbuster trade for quarterback Russell Wilson, but just how much did the deal shake things up?

In a recent edition of "Good Morning Football," NFL Network's Tom Pelissero tabbed Wilson as the most intriguing quarterback on a new team — and he believes a new setting could be good for the nine-time Pro Bowler.

"A fresh start can be really good for people, particularly when you're paired with a head coach like Nathaniel Hackett," Pelissero said. "[The] Broncos making a big bet on this — two first-round picks, two second-round picks, their quarterback Drew Lock, a couple of other players all going for one player who has always envisioned himself … as an MVP. … He's at a pivotal point in his career. He's going to a place where he's going to be surrounded by talent in a really, really difficult division. Let's see what Russell Wilson we get in 2022."

NFL.com's Adam Schein, meanwhile, ranked the addition of Wilson as the third biggest quarterback development of the offseason, behind only Tom Brady un-retiring and Aaron Rodgers sticking with the Packers.

"This is it," Schein wrote. "This is the move. This is the move for Russ and for the Broncos.

"One of bigger disappointments in 2021 as a 7-10 last-place team, Denver just vaulted into the Super Bowl conversation with a simple stroke of Wilson's no-trade-clause-waiving pen. While the AFC West is undoubtedly loaded, the Chiefs -- who have taken the last six division titles -- just lost one of the most explosive weapons in football, trading Tyreek Hill to the Dolphins. Suddenly, the Broncos look like a serious threat, with immense talent on both sides of the ball.

"Nathaniel Hackett is going to let Russ cook, and the quarterback will maximize Denver's enticing collection of receivers. Wilson will also be supported by one of the more promising young backs in the league, tackle-breaking stud Javonte Williams. Meanwhile, the defense was a top-notch unit last season, with gifted players at all three levels. Pat Surtain II could be the next big thing at cornerback.

"Broncos general manager George Paton absolutely slammed this out of the park."

Of course, the addition of Wilson doesn't automatically push the Broncos into the pole position in the AFC West. ESPN's Bart Scott ranked the Broncos as the fifth best team in the AFC behind the Bengals, Bills, Chargers and Browns. Scott, though, does think the Broncos will win the division in 2022 — and he predicted on ESPN that the Kansas City Chiefs would not make the playoffs.

His take was met by skepticism from the rest of the ESPN crew, but isn't that the beauty of the NFL offseason? No one knows quite what will happen, but we cannot wait to find out.

Below the Fold

Did you miss new Broncos cornerback K'Waun Williams' introductory press conference on Wednesday afternoon? Click here to get to know the Broncos' newest defensive back and to learn why he should provide more than just solid coverage.

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