Granted, the Broncos have made plenty of disappointing first-round draft choices over their history, as we documented in a 2016 list of their ten worst. But just two years later, we have to update the roster to accommodate a bust who's put what is arguably the largest stain on Elway's legacy as an executive to date.
We hope the order won't shift again anytime soon. After all, the last time Denver drafted in the top five, the squad landed Von Miller, who became a Super Bowl MVP and is on a trajectory that could very well take him to the NFL Hall of Fame. But we aren't ready to bet Mile High Stadium on it.
Continue to count down our nominees for the Broncos' ten worst first-round draft picks.
Number 25 overall pick in 1992
Maddox had some good years as QB in Pittsburgh, long after his Broncos days. But in Denver, he was mainly drafted because then-coach Dan Reeves was disenchanted with John Elway and seldom rose from the pine.
Wide receiver: Hawaii
Number 19 overall pick in 2002
Lelie never became the big-time receiver the Broncos envisioned, and he was a grumbler, leading to his 2006 trade. Two years later, he was out of the league.
Number 25 overall pick in 2010
We're of two minds on Timmy. Yes, he got the Broncos to the playoffs (and won a game!) in his best season with the squad. But he was a terrible passer and a weirdly divisive presence who was disappeared from the roster at the earliest opportunity. Peyton Manning, four winning seasons and a Super Bowl championship followed.
Number 24 overall pick in 2001
He was drafted with the idea that he'd become a star, but Middlebrooks was more of a journeyman. He lasted just three seasons in Denver.
Offensive tackle: Nebraska
Number 22 overall pick in 1979
Clark is so little remembered for his brief stint in Denver that we couldn't even find a trading-card image showing him in a Broncos uniform. This is him sporting Nebraska red.