Broncos GM Elway: We got better on offense

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The Denver Broncos made three draft picks on Friday, picking up wide receiver Courtland Sutton of SMU in the second round, and getting Oregon running back Royce Freeman and Boston College cornerback Isaac Yiadom in the third.

Here is what general manager John Elway, head coach Vance Johnson and the players had to say:


“We got better on the offensive side, no question. There were some areas that we needed some players, and so we’re really excited. Courtland (Sutton) is big, fast and he’s really raw. We feel like he really has a tremendous ceiling and upside.

Royce has obviously carried the ball a lot at Oregon. He had tremendous production there. He’s a big banger that we haven’t had for a while so we’re excited to have him, too.

Isaac, we had him down at the Senior Bowl and really liked him. He’s really long and can run, and really does a nice job on the deep balls. He’s physical and we think he’ll be a really good special teams player. We’re excited about the three players we got today.”

On not selecting an offensive lineman on Day 2

“We actually thought we had one but it didn’t work out that way. Things happened, so we didn’t get it.”

On whether they were surprised that Sutton was available

“We were excited he was still there. We had a plan for that spot as far as talking about moving up. We had different options, but I like the plan that we there and eventually we got to. We were able to stay there and we were excited that Courtland was still there. The third wide receiver was important to us and he’s a guy that can really develop and eventually maybe become a No. 1.”

On the high number of carries Freeman had in college

“What it shows to us is he’s durable. He played a lot so therefore he can take that. At the end of his career who know how much that will shorten it, but it wasn’t a concern when we took him that there was too much tread.”

On whether Freeman reminds them of former RB C.J. Anderson

“Yeah, he’s got the same type of size. Royce has got a lot better speed, he’s a 4.5 (40-yard dash time) guy. He’s got breakaway speed and has that ability. The experience that he’s had, he’s really got a good feel between the tackles. He’s a guy that if we can get him on the safeties, he has a chance to break it.”


On whether Freeman can compete for the starting job

“Absolutely. It’s going to be open obviously with (Devontae Booker) and De’Angelo (Henderson). You’ve got to have two or three backs anyways, so it’s always going to be open competition. It takes two or three guys to have a solid backfield.”

On where Sutton will play on the offense

“The third receiver is like a third corner. Everyone is in sub and everyone is in three-wide. It’s like being a starter. He can play X and he can play in the slot, so that won’t be important where he plays. It’s important to the concept that you call in the huddle, but his skillset is special. He can play all three spots.”

On the impact Sutton and Freeman can red zone

“With Sutton, and obviously the 6-4 frame, that’s key in the red zone. His skillset translates to being the No. 1 guy. He’s got No. 1 traits as a receiver. Obviously he’ll come in and compete for the third spot, but John said it, in the future he can be our No. 1 guy. Obviously with Freeman, he’s a big back with speed. When we get down there in the red zone and we want to run the football, he’s a nice option. When you’re third-and-one, fourth-and-one, he’s a great option. We’re excited about both guys.”

On their experiences with Yiadom in the Senior Bowl

“Isaac was a guy that got better every day. He certainly fits our profile at corner. We want long corners with long speed because we’re a press team. He got better and better every day, he’s a smart guy and he’s going to be great on special teams for us as a tough tackler. He definitely fits our bill at cornerback.”


On if he knew he was on Denver’s radar and how he describes himself as a running back

“I had no idea it would be the Broncos. With things like this, you just don’t know where you are going to end up or where you are going to go. I definitely am appreciative to be a part of this winning culture. As far as my running style, I say that I can do a lot of things. I can do a lot of power running back style. I also feel like I have the ability to be able to get to the outside.”

On seeking contact from the defense

“I want to be the one to deliver that blow and I think as a running back, that is definitely important.”

On coming in to compete

“I feel like I have a chance to go in there and compete with other running backs that are there. There are pretty good running backs who are there already. Just being there and competing with those guys.”


On his experience at the Senior Bowl

“I was so grateful to be able to be coached by coach ‘M-Rob’ (Broncos defensive backs coach Marcus Robertson) and coach Joseph on the defensive side of the ball. I got better every single day. They helped me with little things like my stance and my technique. Every day I saw getting better and competing.”

On his strengths and his ability to play special teams

“I think my speed. I can run at corner. There are other things I can do too. I take pride in special teams that is something I will always give 110 percent on. I am dying to be on the field to play special teams every single snap.”

On how he can improve

“There is a lot of stuff I can improve on in order to be the best. I would say just making sure I catch the ball when it is thrown to me. That is something I have been working on tremendously. I am pretty confident about that side of my game.”


On his relationship with WR Emmanuel Sanders

“He’s a guy who I was able to reach out to a couple times while I was at SMU and talk to him about how to get to that level, especially when we’re coming from a smaller school where it’s so hard to gain the attention of Dallas fans and gain national attention. Being able to have that relationship with him and being able to talk with him-it wasn’t an everyday thing but we would talk a few times about how I get to that level and how I continue to climb to be the best that I can be, even with that big fight against me coming from a smaller school.”

On what he feels his biggest strengths are

“Outside of my work ethic, I am a guy who is going to come to the field and demand respect wherever I am on the field, whether it is in the slot, whether it is on the outside, on the right or the left. Wherever I am at on the field, if it is a pass play or run play, defenses have to know where I am at because they know that I am going to do my job. I am going to do it above and beyond with what is inside of me. That is the thing that I think I bring to the table. I am going to make plays and I am going to continue to make plays. I am not goin


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