Broncos' pick of Miller could have used complementary DT

Shock would be a bit of an overstatement to describe reaction to the Denver Broncos' decision last week to make Texas A&M outside linebacker Von Miller the second overall pick of the draft.

But it was, at the very least, a mild surprise that the Broncos chose him over Alabama defensive tackle Marcell Dareus, who ended up joining the Buffalo Bills at No. 3.

Likes, dislikes about teams' drafts

Michael Lombardi has a list of likes and dislikes about last week's NFL draft. Find out what he thought about the Broncos' selection of LB Von Miller over a defensive tackle. More...

Miller is an exceptionally talented player. He has the athleticism and speed to be a major force coming after the quarterback off the edge. New Broncos coach John Fox wanted to put more teeth into his team's pass rush in a hurry, and Miller certainly is capable of doing that.

Now comes word, from The Denver Post, that the Broncos had a broader plan for addressing their front seven. According to The Post, the team considered trading its way back into the top half of the first round in hopes of selecting Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley. But the price apparently was too high for the Broncos' liking, and Fairley ended up going to the Detroit Lions at No. 13.

The Post also reported that the Broncos also considered acquiring a first-round pick in hopes of landing Illinois defensive tackle Corey Liuget. But that didn't work out, either, and Liuget wound up joining the San Diego Chargers at No. 18.

If nothing else, the trade contemplations make it fairly clear that the Broncos recognized the importance of adding a dominant player to the middle of their defense. Whatever second-guessing their selection of Miller has drawn would have been greatly minimized (if not erased) by the addition of a big-time defensive tackle who could do plenty to enhance any linebacker's production. But it didn't happen, and that leaves the Broncos with a significant hole to fill.

The only defensive lineman the Broncos drafted was a smallish end, Oklahoma's Jeremy Beal, with the second of their two seventh-round picks.

It looks like the Broncos' effort to place big bodies in front of Miller and the rest of their linebackers will have to wait until free agency.

Follow Vic Carucci on Twitter @viccarucci.

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