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NFL Draft 2011: If Carolina Surprises With No. 1 Pick, Where Do The Broncos Go?

It's become accepted knowledge that the Carolina Panthers should take Auburn quarterback Cam Newton with the No. 1 overall draft pick. The NFC South is filled with star quarterbacks, and Newton could reach the same level as Drew Brees, Matt Ryan and the emerging Josh Freeman, his possible future counterparts in the division.

But if we listen to former Panthers and current Broncos coach John Fox, as Jeff Legwold writes in the Denver Post, he's not so sure the team will go with Newton or any quarterback with the top pick. It hints at where Fox would have gone had he been brought back after the end of the 2010 season. He believes a receiver or a defensive tackle is a possibility there. But taking a wide receiver, such as Georgia's A.J. Green, No. 1 overall seems to be a stretch. A quarterback or a defensive tackle would be better value with all the holes the team has to fill.

Let's run one scenario: The Panthers draft Alabama defensive tackle Marcell Dareus with the No. 1 pick. That eliminates the consensus player mock drafts had the Broncos selecting. Texas A&M linebacker Von Miller, LSU cornerback Patrick Peterson or even Auburn's Nick Fairley could be selected there. But would it be possible a team looking for a quarterback would be willing to trade a few draft picks to move ahead of everyone to get Newton?

That's the fun part of draft speculating.

The first round of the 2011 NFL Draft starts at 8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, April 28th and SB Nation has everything you need to prepare for it - NFL mock drafts, draft projections, scouting reports, the full NFL draft schedule and more. Check it all out at our 2011 NFL Draft Hub and our NFL Draft blog Mocking the Draft. Visit Mile High Report for more on the Broncos.