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Broncos Wrap Up 2020 NFL Draft

DenverBroncos.comApril 25, 2020

The Broncos added to their offensive core in the fourth round of the 2020 NFL Draft by drafting Missouri tight end Albert Okwuegbunam with the 118th-overall pick.

Okwuegbunam will reunite with his college quarterback Drew Lock in Denver.

Okwuegbunam, a 6-foot-5, 258-pound player, caught 98 passes for 1,187 yards and 23 touchdowns during three seasons at Missouri.

The former All-Freshman SEC player led his team in receiving touchdowns during two of his three seasons, and he caught 17 scores from Lock during their two years together at Missouri.

He was among the best available prospects still on the board heading into Round 4, as he has elite speed. His 4.49-second 40-yard dash was the fastest among tight ends at the 2020 NFL Combine. The second-fastest tight end ran a 4.66. Noah Fant, for comparison’s sake, ran a 4.50 in 2019.

The Broncos have now addressed the offensive side with four of their first six picks as they added Jerry Jeudy, KJ Hamler and Lloyd Cushenberry III on the first two days of the draft.

The Broncos added to their linebacking corps as they drafted linebacker Justin Strnad with the 178th-overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Strnad, a four-year player at Wake Forest, tallied 244 tackles, 22.5 tackles for loss, eight sacks, three forced fumbles, 10 passes defensed and four interceptions in 46 career games.

In 2019, Strnad was an honorable mention All-ACC player and a team captain. While he missed the final six games of the season with a torn right bicep tendon, he recorded 5.5 tackles for loss, four pass breakups and an interception in his seven games.

Strnad said Saturday that he was cleared from his injury around the time of February’s 2020 NFL Combine.

“I do my think my best football is ahead of me,” Strnad said. “I think as far as special teams goes, I played all special teams my first two years of college. I think I’m going to be able to come in right away and help with any special teams [role] they need me to.”

As a two-year starter at Wake Forest, the former high school safety averaged nearly nine tackles per game.

“I feel very comfortable in pass coverage,” Strnad said. “I played safety in high school, so it’s something I’ve been doing for a long time.”

Strnad said he wants to continue to work on his man-to-man coverage, as the Demon Deacons largely played zone.

Strnad joins an inside linebacking group in Denver headed by Alexander Johnson and Todd Davis.

The Broncos added another player up front by drafting Fresno State guard Netane Muti with the 181st-overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Muti earned honorable mention All-Mountain West honors in 2017, which was his lone season as a full-time starter. That year, as a redshirt freshman, Muti started all 14 games for the Bulldogs.

He then, however, struggled with injuries over the next two seasons. Muti missed all but two games in 2018 with an Achilles injury, and he only played in three games in 2019 before suffering a Lisfranc injury. He also suffered an Achilles injury in 2016.

“My foot is doing great right now,” Muti said Saturday in regards to the Lisfranc injury. “Everything’s positive and moving in the right direction. [The] doctor is saying it’s doing good, so everything’s going well so far. I feel great, and I’m excited to be with the Broncos.”

Muti was considered by several evaluators to be a Top 50 talent in the 2020 NFL Draft, but the injury concerns pushed him down the board.

“I think I’m the best guard in this class,” Muti said. “I feel like they really got a steal. I’m just excited. I’m ready to give Broncos [fans] my all and go out there, learn from the older guys in the O-line room and just be a part of the family and just win games. I’m just excited.”

In all, Muti started all 19 games in which he appeared during his three-year career. He started 17 games at left guard and two at left tackle.

Muti was the team’s only underclassman to be named a team captain in 2019.

The Broncos previously drafted LSU center Lloyd Cushenberry III in the third round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

The Broncos added one last piece to their offense when they drafted wide receiver Tyrie Cleveland with the 252nd-overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Cleveland appeared in 46 career games for the Gators during his four-year career and caught 79 passes for 1,271 yards and eight touchdowns.

Cleveland started 26 games — included 12 in 2018 — and recorded a career high in receptions in 2019.

The Broncos added three wide receivers in the draft, as they took Jerry Jeudy in the first round and KJ Hamler with their second pick.

The Broncos added to their defense with their final selection of the draft as they chose North Dakota State outside linebacker Derrek Tuszka.

Tuszka was an FCS first-team All-American in 2019 as well as the Missouri Valley Football Conference’s Defensive Player of the Year.

During his final year, he recorded 48 tackles, 19 tackles for loss 13.5 sacks, one forced fumble and five passes defensed.

In his four-year career, he started 34 of the 53 games in which he appeared and recorded 133 tackles, 42 tackles for loss, 29.5 sacks, three forced fumbles and six passes defensed.

Tuszka joins a group led by Von Miller and Bradley Chubb.

Copyright © Meridian Media, 2021. All Rights Reserved. No part of this story may be reproduced without Meridian Media’s express consent.



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