Award-Winning Texas Star Projected to Broncos in New 2024 Mock Draft

Vance Joseph

Getty Broncos DC Vance Joseph got some defensive help in a new 2024 mock draft.

The quarterback situation for the Denver Broncos continues to go unsolved without an end in sight.

How the Broncos resolve the ongoing QB search is uncertain, yet the team has other needs to prioritize. In his latest 2024 NFL mock draft, Will Brinson of CBS Sports has Denver addressing the pass rush for defensive coordinator Vance Joseph.

Brinson mocked Texas defensive lineman Byron Murphy II to the Broncos to help bolster the pass rush.

“The Broncos have plenty of holes and getting better on the defensive line should certainly be a priority,” Brinson wrote in his March 20 mock draft.

Murphy was the Big 12 Defensive Lineman of the Year and was a first-team All-Big 12 selection in his final season with the Longhorns. During the 2023 campaign, Murphy set career highs in tackles (29), tackles for loss (8.5 ), sacks (5) and quarterback hurries (7).


Nick Kosmider of The Athletic named Murphy a possible option for Denver with the No. 12 pick.

“Murphy … may or may not be in the Denver Broncos’ range when they make their first-round pick, currently scheduled at No. 12,” Kosmider wrote in his February 28 article. “But he serves as a dynamic illustration of something they undoubtedly need: a major upgrade of talent along the defensive front.”

Broncos Have Not Addressed the Pass Rush in NFL Draft Since 2018

With the No. 5 pick in the 2018 NFL draft, the Broncos selected NC State linebacker Bradley Chubb.

Chubb played 49 games in the Mile High City before being traded to the Miami Dolphins in November 2022. The 2018 draft marked the last time Denver took an edge rusher or defensive lineman in the first round.

Unfortunately for Chubb, his time with the Broncos was marred by injuries. Chubb tore his ACL in Week 4 of the 2019 season, then suffered through a nagging ankle injury in 2021.

Following a promising rookie campaign which included a career-high 12 sacks, Chubb failed to regain his form as an elite pass rusher. Regardless, Denver requires a steady presence to guide the unit moving forward.

Murphy could be the player the Broncos need to help improve the defense in the second season under Joseph.

Will the Broncos Find Consistency on Defense in 2024?

The Broncos giving up 70 points to the Dolphins in Week 3 marked a true low point for the defense.

Denver regained its form and had one of the best defenses in the NFL from Weeks 6-12. During that stretch, the Broncos gave up an average of 16.5 points per game. The unit had given up 36.2 points per game in the first five weeks.

However, that stretch did not do enough to mask the defense’s glaring flaws overall.

Kosmider mentioned that the Broncos “ranked last in the NFL last season at 5 yards allowed per carry.” The defense ranked 30th in rushing yards allowed (137.1 yards per game) and 21st in sacks (42), per Fox Sports.

Young defenders like Nik Bonitto and Jonathon Cooper contributed to Denver’s second-half defensive turnaround. Bonitto and Cooper combined for 16.5 sacks and 33 QB hits last season.

Their growth will determine how far the Broncos go in the 2024 NFL season. All reinforcements are needed as the team remodels the roster under second-year head coach Sean Payton.