Throughout the offseason, we’ll be profiling players who may end up in Denver when all is said and done with NFL Free Agency. The Broncos clearly have plenty of holes to fill before they get back to Super-Bowl form and we’ll be examining a long list of players they may choose to help the franchise do just that.
Less than four years ago Chance Warmack was touted as the best offensive guard prospect in over a decade by Todd McShay and the best player in the entire draft by Mike Mayock. Now, after four years in the NFL with the Tennessee Titans, Warmack hits the open market as an underperforming pro with plenty of talent.
The right guard’s four year career can be split into two, two-year segments. In his first two seasons, Warmack’s talent was evident as he showed promise of living up to the No. 10 overall pick while only missing three total snaps. The previous two seasons were a different story. Warmack’s performance didn’t improve from his first two seasons and injuries kept him off of the field for 16 total games.
At 26-years old, the former University of Alabama product hits the open market with plenty of talent and time left in his career, but with many questions as well.
Coming out of college, McShay graded Warmack as ‘outstanding’ in run blocking, awareness and toughness. In his four-year career he has had the most success in run blocking. Coming from a run-heavy Alabama offense—back then Alabama’s offense was run heavy—this part of his game translated to the NFL fairly well.
However, the other aspects of his game didn’t translate, or haven’t translated yet.
Unfortunately for Warmack, this category can be filled up more than the previous category. While Warmack graded out as the worst offensive lineman on Tennessee during the first two games of last season, according to Pro Football Focus, what could have been even more concerning was why he didn’t play the remaining 14 games.
After tearing a tendon in his middle finger in Week 2, Warmack elected to have season-ending surgery to repair the finger even though head coach Mike Mularkey said he could have elected to play through the injury for the season.
Additionally, three days after the Titans declined to pick up his fifth-year option last year, Warmack blamed the disappointing start to his career on the lack of coaching he received and not on himself.
How he fits in Denver
While Warmack could still have the most upside for any guard in free agency, he will not be among the most prized. If he lands in Denver it could be on a short-term “prove it” type of deal. In this situation, the Broncos would get a cheap talented lineman to help upgrade their offensive line while Warmack would get a chance to prove his worth to the league.
On the field, the fifth-year player would most likely step in at right guard. While he wouldn’t be guaranteed the starting job, it would be very possible that he could overtake Michael Schofield or Max Garcia.
If the new Denver Broncos coaching staff, specifically offensive line coach Jeff Davidson, believes they can mold Warmack into the player they want, then he could be wearing orange and blue next season.