Meet Brian Orakpo, the man the Broncos were too stupid to draft

Watching the NFL draft during the Mike Shanahan era was consistently frustrating, since the team regularly made odd personnel choices, far too many of which didn't work out (Maurice Clarett, anyone?). For that reason, a lot of us were looking forward to the first draft since the arrival of a regime fronted by coach Josh McDaniels, in the hope that the new guys would have a keener eye for talent. And while it's too soon to render judgment, the earliest sign -- the number twelve pick -- doesn't bode well. Everyone knows the Broncos desperately need defensive help, and stud Texas defensive end Brian Orakpo was still available. So what did the Josh crew do? Snatched up Georgia running back Knowshon Moreno, who many draft prognosticators saw going in the first round's twenty-to-thirty range -- and the Broncos had the number eighteen pick, too.

The Washington Redskins, who drafted thirteenth, were so thrilled that Orakpo was still available that they took about ten seconds of their time on the clock to select him. As you eyeball the ESPN SportsCenter profile of Orakpo above, contemplate what it would have been like to see him in Broncos orange -- and wonder aloud if McDaniels is just as iffy at this evaluation stuff as Shanahan was.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts