The Denver Broncos have selected Alabama cornerback Patrick Surtain II with the ninth overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Surtain scored off the charts in metrics used by RAS. His 9.97 RAS ranked seventh all-time out of 1755 cornerbacks from 1987-2021. While it would have been nice to get a quarterback, there is no questioning the type of athlete the Broncos got with their ninth overall pick.
Before the draft, NFL.com’s Brian Baldinger sang Surtain’s praise.
I believe Patrick Surtain II is the best defensive player going into the draft. He has a great deal of experience after playing three years at ‘Bama against the best competition every Saturday. Not to mention, he practiced daily against a fleet of top receivers (DeVonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle in this draft class, as well as 2020 first-rounders Henry Ruggs III and Jerry Jeudy), honing both his man-to-man skills and zone principals. Surtain was coached by his father, who had his own 11-year NFL career, before playing under the best defensive back coach in the country in Nick Saban. That’s why he is clean, skilled and ready to immediately upgrade an NFL team’s secondary on Day 1.
The Broncos secondary looks downright scary in 2021, but this move will pay dividends beyond next season as both Bryce Callahan and Kyle Fuller are playing on the final year of their current contracts. If one or both leave in free agency next year, then at least Denver has a starter already lined up.